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Russia and the EU waiver by the December 2011

Recently in Poland, opened a two-day meeting of the Russia Permanent Partnership Council and the European Union on freedom, security and justice. At the head of the Russian delegation was the special envoy of Russian President Minister of Justice, Mr. Alexander Konovalov.

Mr. Konovalov said that "the text of the joint list of steps to short-term visa-free travel for citizens of Russia, the EU agreed in the main part of its contents."

"We hope that it will be finally discussed and sanctioned by the leadership of the European Union and the Russian Federation before the December summit of the EU - Russia, to the summit an opportunity to sign it," - said Mr. Konovalov.

In his words, "in the text there is a rather large package of issues that our European partners are traditionally associated with the abolition of the visa regime. That measures to combat transnational crime, illegal migration, protection of personal data, with some additional procedures associated with the presence of people in Russia or the EU. "

"This is a package that was lying on the table for at least the last five years. In this case, we concluded that it is necessary to meet our European partners. The EU can not solve it alone without a package ", - explained the Minister of Justice.

Russia Permanent Partnership Council and the European Union on freedom, security and justice exists since 2004. Meetings are held both in Russia and in the territory of the EU at the level of Ministers of Justice and Internal Affairs of Russia, the current and future presidencies of the EU commissioners and management of specialized agencies of the European Union.

By Irina Lelina for Areti Charidemou & Associates LLC

Yulia Tymoshenko - a fair verdict?

Last Tuesday, in Kiev, Pechersk District Court sentenced former Prime Minister Mrs Yulia Tymoshenko to seven years in prison for abuse of office during the signing of gas contracts between the companies "Naftogaz Ukrainy" and "Gazprom" in 2009.

The judge recognized that Mrs Tymoshenko had exceeded her powers, while she was prime minister of Ukraine, as without the approval of the government, issued a directive to the negotiations on gas in Moscow, which were not properly executed. This verdict can be appealed within 15 days.

Mrs Tymoshenko did not agree with the verdict handed down to her and is going to appeal this decision to the European Court.

 "I do not agree with this verdict. We will defend my honor at the European Court. We do not have any hope for our justice" - said Mrs Tymoshenko.

According to the President of Ukraine, Mr Viktor Yanukovych, the imposed sentence on Mrs Tymoshenko will complicate European integration of Ukraine.

At the same time, Mr Yanukovych stressed that the verdict is not the final.

"Certainly, the court's decision was within the existing Criminal Procedure Code, but it is not a final decision - the Court of Appeal is ahead," - said Mr Yanukovych.

Western countries have always expressed concern about the case of Mrs Tymoshenko and said that if the former prime minister will be sentenced to actual prison term, it will seriously worsen relations with Ukraine, namely, block the signing of agreements on association between the EU and Ukraine, the agreement includes the provision of a free trade zone. Kiev is planning to initial an agreement before the end of this year, followed in early 2012 to sign the document after all the formalities regarding to the translation of the agreement into all the languages ​​of the European Union.

By Irina Lelina for Areti Charidemou & Associates LLC

European Tourism Forum of 2012 in Cyprus

In accordance with the Cyprus Tourism Organisation (CTO) press release the European Tourism Forum of 2012 will be held in Cyprus during the Cyprus EU Presidency in the second half of the year 2012. This was announced during the Forum of 2011 which was held in Poland, Krakow, between 5 and 6 October within the Polish EU Presidency.

A Cyprus delegation, consisting of the Board Member of the Cyprus Tourism Organisation Mr George Moisi, acting General Director of CTO Mr Lefkos Phylaktides and a Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism official Mrs Niki Paschalidou Hadjiantona have participated in the Forum and an informal EU meeting of Ministers.

The main discussed matter at the Forum was methods to improve the competitiveness of Europe as a tourist destination. During the informal EU ministers of tourism meeting also was devoted attention to the promotion of Europe as a main destination to third world countries and actions of the European Commission to attract tourism from third world countries.

The European Tourism Forum was first launched in December 2002 in Brussels with the target of providing an operational framework and correct measures to strengthen European tourism.

The European Tourism Forums brings together the leading representatives from the tourism industry, civil society, European Institutions, national and regional tourism authorities and international organizations to discuss the challenges of the industry.

The EU aim is that Europe maintains its place as the first tourism destination in the world.

By Irina Lelina for Areti Charidemou & Associates LLC

Forex Trading Customer Support in Cyprus

Yesterday, Forex trading platform and financial service provider iFOREX has launched full customer support and training services in Greek language. The clients and potential traders of iFOREX now will be able to receive 1-on-1 tuition and get full assistance from a Greek customer service representative. iFOREX also offers complete customer services in many other languages that also include French and Italian.

The decision to include full support in Greek language meant that iFOREX expanded its global offices to a new location in Cyprus. Within the office in Cyprus, Greek customer support teams were fully trained to assist to the clients with any questions or enquiries they might have in regards to Forex trading, the iFOREX platform or the exclusive trading tools of iFOREX.

 "iFOREX has always had strong beliefs in the way that it approaches customer support. We believe that clients will be more comfortable trading and enjoy a better experience when they know that they can rely on support not only in their mother tongue, but also from people that understand the Forex market and the trading platform"- underlined a senior member of the support management team.

By Irina Lelina for Areti Charidemou & Associates LLC

Billionaire Mr Soros at the European Court

The European Court of Human Rights rejected an appeal from billionaire Mr George Soros on the verdict by a French court in 2002. The court acknowledged that Mr Soros used the inside information in transactions with the securities of Societe Generale Bank.

 In the center of the proceedings in 2002 that were the commercial transactions signed by Mr Soros in 1988, included the transactions with Societe Generale bank, whereby the fund of Mr Soros “Quantum Fund” earned a profit of $ 2.9 million.

In 2002, the court determined that Mr Soros possessed inside information about the intentions of the group of wealthy investors to propose purchasing the bank.  Although plans for this group of investors did not take place, the fund of Mr Soros has won a deal with the bank's shares by buying them before they were announced to potential buyers, and sold after the onset of this information.

Mr Soros was awarded a penalty of $ 2.2 million, which was subsequently appealed and reduced to 940 507 euros. Mr Soros has based his appeal on the fact that the French law on official information at the end of 1980 was too vague, so that he could understand violating it.

However, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that Mr Soros as "a well-known institutional investor, a well known business community, could not know that his decision to invest is a risk of violations of securities transactions on the basis of  confidential information."

By Irina Lelina for Areti Charidemou & Associates LLC

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