|The Cyprus Ports Authority was established in 1973 on the basis of the 1973 Ports Authority Law. This was a result of a clause in a Loan granted to the Republic of Cyprus by the World Bank for Reconstruction and Development in 1969, for the construction of (Lemesos) Limassol and Larnaka ports. The Bank had asked for the creation of an independent and flexible organisation free of pubic sector bureaucratic procedures and which could operate on a commercial basis.|
Cyprus Ports Authority is a Public Sector Entity set up by law and governed by a nine-member Board (Chairman, Vice-Chairman and seven members) appointed by the Council of Ministers for a three-year term. The Board applies the policies of the Government according to the Authority’s legislation. These policies are conveyed and supervised by the Minister of Communication and Works.
The Authority is the competent entity to administer, operate and develop the ports, as well as to facilitate international shipping aids and issue licences for pilotage.
The Authority has a double role:
(a) It exercises public power
(b) It provides commercial and financial services
In its public power role, the Authority is the owner of the ports and lighthouses as well as being the regulator of port services rendered. Within the framework of this role, the Authority:
• Plans, develops and manages port infrastructure.
• Provides licences for the use of port land, and the provision of services in the ports under its jurisdiction.
• Provides licences for the provision of port services and for the construction of works in port areas.
• Provides public/non financial activities.
As well as the above role, the Authority provides commercial/financial/port services. The main ones are:
• Ship pilotage
• Ship towage and mooring
• Use of gantry cranes and large mobile cranes
• Reception, storage and delivery of cargo
Within the jurisdiction of the Authority are the commercial ports of Lemesos (Limassol) and Larnaka, the old port of Lemesos (Limassol), the Paphos port, the Latchi fishing harbour and the oil terminals at Vassiliko and Moni. Further, the lighthouses at Cape Greco, Cape Kiti, Cape Gata, Paphos and Akamas also come under its jurisdiction.
The ports of Famagusta and Kyrenia the oil terminal at Karavostassi as well as the lighthouses at Kormakitis and Apostolos Andreas remain under Turkish occupation.
Unfortunately, however, as soon as the Authority started to make its first steps, it was thwarted by the Turkish invasion, which in addition to the human suffering and the disaster it brought about, also checked its course and deprived it of its main port, that of Famagusta which then handled 83% of the country’s trade.
It took a further two years from July 1974, before the Authority was able to gradually function as an autonomous organization. In August 1976 the assets of the ports were transferred to the Authority, which began slowly to undertake its role and to employ its human resources in stages. In January 1976 the first employee of the Authority was appointed, its General Manager. Next, in 1977, it was manned with a minimum necessary staff, thus creating the Personnel and Administrative Department as well as the Finance Department. In October of the same year the employees of the then Ports Department were transferred to the Authority along with a number of employees from the Customs and Excise Department.
From 1973 until now, the installations of Lemesos (Limassol) and Larnaka ports have been expanded considerably. In Lemesos (Limassol) port, the quays were enhanced from 800 metres to 1.980 metres and in Larnaka port from 326 metres to 866 metres.
At the same time, the open stacking area at Lemesos (Limassol) port was increased from 103.000 sq. metres to 490.000 sq. metres, while that of Larnaka port from 61.867 sq. metres to 220,000 sq. meters. Also, the land and sea equipment of the ports was upgraded both in number and kind.
In Lemesos (Limassol) port in 1973, the land and sea equipment comprised mobile cranes and one tugboat. Four cranes and four gantry cranes with a lifting capacity of 40 tons, two Panamax gantry cranes and a pilot boat were added in stages. Further, during the last decade three new tug boats with a bollard pull of 35 tons each were added to the Authority’s fleet in order to handle larger container ships.
While the land and sea equipment in the port of Larnaka in 1973 comprised of a few mobile cranes and two tug boats, new equipment was gradually added and in the decade of the 1990’s was augmented with two gantry cranes and a pilot boat.
Within the framework of the Authority’s efforts towards the rationalized development of Cypriot ports, it was decided to draw and implement a Master Plan to improve the port of Lemesos (Limassol). It’s enforcement was scheduled to be carried out in different phases up to 2005.
In the first phase, which began in 1993 and which was completed in 1996, the main breakwater was expanded by 500 metres, the turning circle was dredged to 15 metres, and new quays of a length of 670 meters and a depth of 14 metres were constructed at the western side of the port. Container stacking space of a total area of 200.000 sq. metres was reconfigured.
Lastly, the Authority has sought its incorporation into the international port community as well as its active participation in international shipping issues. As such it is now a member of the International Association of Ports and Harbours (IAPH), of the International Cargo Handling Association (ICHCA) and the International Lighthouses Authorities Association (IALA). As of 1993 the Authority has also become a member of the Mediterranean Cruise Association (MedCruise) as well as in the European Sea Ports Organisation (ESPO).