Cyprus is highly exposed to the fallout from the war in Ukraine through trade with Russia. This new challenge comes against the background of the lingering effects of the pandemic and financial vulnerabilities dating from the 2012–13 crisis. Growth is projected to slow from 5½ percent in 2021 to around 2 percent this year. Recovery will regain momentum in 2023, and is projected to continue in the medium term, supported by investments and structural reforms in the Recovery and Resilience Plan.
Following a deep recession in 2020 and further contraction in 2021Q1, the euro area economy recovered rapidly in the second and third quarters thanks to high vaccination levels, increasing household and business adaptability to the virus, and continued forceful policy support. Looking ahead, while supply chain disruptions, elevated energy prices, and resurgences of Covid-19 cases—including those related to the Omicron variant—are likely to pose near-term headwinds to growth, the recovery is set to continue in 2022 as the impact of the pandemic on economic activity continues to weaken over time and supply-side constraints ease. Medium-term output losses relative to pre-crisis trends will vary significantly across countries and sectors as will the extent of labor market scarring. Price pressures are building up as production bottlenecks are set to persist for a while. However, inflation—despite increasing significantly in recent months due to transitory factors—is projected to moderate during 2022 and remain below the ECB’s inflation target over the medium term. Uncertainty surrounding the outlook remains high and largely related to pandemic dynamics and legacies, including induced behavioral and preference changes.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
In tandem with Eurozone financial market developments and the prevalence of negative interest rates in 2020, Cypriot banks passed through the costs of their liquidity to their customers, reducing the attractiveness of placing PDMO cash surpluses in domestic bank deposits. Suitable investment alternatives to central bank deposits for the PDMO’s liquidity buffer are scarce, given negative yields on other Eurozone sovereign and agency issues. This situation is shared by the PDMO with almost all of its Eurozone peers. While this is likely to persist in the short term, it should not preclude establishing a framework governing the PDMO’s investment policy or a suitable set of guidelines.
As emerging and developing economies accumulate more domestic sovereign debt, it is likely to play a larger role in the resolution of future sovereign debt crises. This paper analyzes when and how to restructure sovereign domestic debt in unsustainable debt cases while minimizing economic and financial disruptions. Key to determining whether or not domestic debt should be part of a sovereign restructuring is weighing the benefits of the lower debt burden against the fiscal and broader economic costs of achieving that debt relief. The fiscal costs may have to be incurred in the context of restructuring because of the need to maintain financial stability, to ensure the functioning of the central bank, or to replenish pension savings. A sovereign domestic debt restructuring should be designed to anticipate, minimize, and manage its impact on the domestic economy and financial system. Casting the net wide across claims can help boost participation in the restructuring by lowering the relief sought from each creditor group. A strategy that engages creditors constructively, and as transparently as possible, that relies on market-based incentives, and that presents the exchange as part of a consistent macroeconomic plan typically works best.