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Last Updated: Tuesday, 13 February 2007, 13:25 GMT
Cyprus applies to join the euro
What a Cyprus euro will look like
The new Cyprus euro coin would show a 3,000 BC cruciform idol
Cyprus has formally applied to join the single European currency.

The European Commission and European Central Bank will rule on whether it meets the rules for euro entry in May.

EU leaders should decide whether Cyprus can adopt the euro the following month and if they give their approval, it will then do so in January 2008.

EU economists last month praised Cyprus' efforts to reduce government debt but advised it to do more about pension and healthcare reform.

Meeting standards

Nicosia says that it meets standards for adopting the euro because its inflation level, which was 2.2% in 2006, is close to the euro average.

The officially-recognised government of Cyprus controls the southern two-thirds of the island.

It joined the EU in May 2004, a month after Greek Cypriots rejected a United Nations reunification plan.

A Turkish Cypriot breakaway state in north Cyprus is recognised only by the Turkish government in Ankara.

Last year, Turkey's EU entry plans were partially frozen, following its refusal to open its ports to Cyprus.

Slovenia became the 13th country to adopt the single currency at the start of the year while Malta, which has already applied, hopes to be admitted at the same time as Cyprus.


SEE ALSO
Rare meeting for Cyprus leaders
03 Jul 06 |  Europe
Country profile: Cyprus
12 Dec 06 |  Country profiles

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