Landmark deal signed for Europe’s largest casino

Cyprus Mail reports that the casino deal is signed:

The contract for Cyprus’ first integrated casino resort, the only one of its kind in Europe, was signed on Monday in Nicosia between the gaming authority and the Melco Hard Rock consortium and is designed to provide for an investment of €500m, attract an extra 300,000 tourists a year, and to add 4,000 jobs.

The contract was signed at the Filoxenia Conference Centre between the president of the National Gaming Authority and Andy Choy, chief gaming officer, of the consortium of Melco International Development Ltd, Seminole HR Holdings LLC (Melco Hard Rock) and CNS Group (Cyprus Phassouri Zakaki Ltd).
Energy, Commerce and Tourism Minister Yiorkos Lakkotrypis, who addressed the event, touted the fact that the Limassol complex would be the only integrated casino resort in Europe, which will be based in Limassol, and will include four satellite casinos in Nicosia, Larnaca, Famagusta and Paphos.

The main resort will also be the largest casino in Europe, the minister said with 136 gaming tables, 1,200 gaming machines, a luxury hotel with 500 rooms with the capacity for expansion, a conference hall spanning 6,000 square metres that can accommodate audiences of 1,500, and a wellness centre covering 4,000 square metres.

It’ll obviously take a bit of time and effort until this all comes to life, but no doubt – that’s a new era for Cyprus as a country, as a tourism destination, and as a member of the European Union.

Exciting news!

Visualization of the European refugee crisis

refugees

The flow towards Europe project provides a vivid visualization of the refugee migration.  It is an interactive map with breakdowns by country, and with a timeline covering the years 2012-2015.

Europe is experiencing the biggest refugee crisis since World War II. Based on data from the United Nations, we clarify the scale of the crisis.

Cyprus has lowest crime rate in EU

In Cyprus runs the story covering some criminal statistics of European Union in general, and Cyprus in particular.  There are some analysis to the numbers and some breakdown by type of crime and so on.

If you are visiting Cyprus on holiday, you can be reassured that Cyprus is the safest country in the EU – based on analysis of data from the EU’s statistical office, Eurostat.

[…]

From the site, you can find out that there were 2.3 million crimes recorded in Spain in 2012 (the latest data), 4.4 million in the UK and just 8,000 crimes recorded in Cyprus in the same year.

The bit that caught my eye was the term “recorded crimes”.  As if decreasing the number of recordings is one of the ways to minimize crime rate…

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Battle scars: How the first world war changed the world

Battle scars: How the first world war changed the world

Geography changed too. After the war the Treaty of Versailles carved out new countries from what remained of the old pre-war empires. Independence was granted to the Baltic states, which had been handed to Germany in 1918 as part of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, which ended Russian involvement in the first world war. Poland was reconstituted from former Russian, German and Austro-Hungarian territories, and Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia and a larger Romania were created.

Check the link for the cool swipe map overlay.

European Parliament votes to end roaming charges, expand consumer rights and make it easier to create better telecoms

European Parliament votes to end roaming charges, expand consumer rights and make it easier to create better telecoms

Today the European Parliament voted to end roaming charges by Christmas 2015, as part of a wider vote in support to the Commission’s proposed regulation for a “Connected Continent” (telecoms single market)*.

Corruption in Cyprus

Corruption in Cyprus

Around 55 per cent of companies in Cyprus who took part in a public tender over the last three years claim that corruption prevented them from winning the contract, the highest percentage in the EU, according to the Commission’s anti-corruption report published on Monday.

Conflicts of interest in bid evaluation were reported in 76 per cent of cases, collusive bidding in 68 per cent, abuse of negotiated procedures in 62 per cent, unclear selection or evaluation criteria in 61 per cent, and amendment of contract terms after the contract is concluded stood at 55 per cent.