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Cyprus: Cash only please!00:39

Cyprus: Cash only please!

Cyprus, Nicosia
March 20, 2013 at 19:53 GMT +00:00 · Published

Cyprus: Cash only please!

Gas stations in Cyprus ask their customers to pay cash only after the Cypriot government announced on Wednesday that banks on the island will stay closed until the following Tuesday. Until banks reopen petrol companies only have access to limited amounts of money. Gas stations need their customers' cash to remain liquid and buy petrol. The measure taken by gas stations all over the island indicates that the shortage of cash could soon be an issue in Cyprus.

The government decided to keep banks closed after the Cypriot Parliament rejected a bailout plan on Tuesday. The plan was announced on Friday by the Troika of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the European Central Bank (ECB) and the European Banking Authority (EBA) after a European Union (EU) summit was held in Brussels. Not one member of Parliament voted in favor of the plan, which included a levy of 9.9% on saving accounts with more than 100,000 euros ($130,000). The bailout would also have hit smaller savers too as the plan proposed to tax 6.5% on savings under 100,000 euros. The Cypriot government later came up with an alternative plan to spare savings under 20,000 euros ($26,000).

To avoid a financial meltdown, Cyprus needs 17 billion euros ($22 billion). The EU offers to contribute 10 billion euros ($13 billion) only if Cyprus brings in 5.8 billion euros ($7.5 billion) by itself. In order to find alternative financing options Cypriot financial minister Michael Sarris visited Moscow on Wednesday to discuss another Russian loan.

Cyprus: Cash only please!00:39
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Description

Cyprus: Cash only please!

Gas stations in Cyprus ask their customers to pay cash only after the Cypriot government announced on Wednesday that banks on the island will stay closed until the following Tuesday. Until banks reopen petrol companies only have access to limited amounts of money. Gas stations need their customers' cash to remain liquid and buy petrol. The measure taken by gas stations all over the island indicates that the shortage of cash could soon be an issue in Cyprus.

The government decided to keep banks closed after the Cypriot Parliament rejected a bailout plan on Tuesday. The plan was announced on Friday by the Troika of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the European Central Bank (ECB) and the European Banking Authority (EBA) after a European Union (EU) summit was held in Brussels. Not one member of Parliament voted in favor of the plan, which included a levy of 9.9% on saving accounts with more than 100,000 euros ($130,000). The bailout would also have hit smaller savers too as the plan proposed to tax 6.5% on savings under 100,000 euros. The Cypriot government later came up with an alternative plan to spare savings under 20,000 euros ($26,000).

To avoid a financial meltdown, Cyprus needs 17 billion euros ($22 billion). The EU offers to contribute 10 billion euros ($13 billion) only if Cyprus brings in 5.8 billion euros ($7.5 billion) by itself. In order to find alternative financing options Cypriot financial minister Michael Sarris visited Moscow on Wednesday to discuss another Russian loan.

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