The Programme offers wide-ranging EU support, including tailored measures to help Turkish Cypriots meet the standards under the Halloumi/Hellim package before the end of 2024. In 2021, the Commission registered Halloumi/Hellim as a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) and issued a Decision under which Turkish Cypriot producers will be able to sell PDO-compliant Halloumi/Hellim across the Green Line, thus placing it on the EU market, once the relevant EU food safety and animal health standards are met. The EU will continue to support the Turkish Cypriot community in producing PDO-compliant Halloumi/Hellim.
The Programme will also continue to support trade across the Green Line and ensure compliance with EU product and production standards, including in the area of product safety. Specialised testing equipment will be made available for this purpose.
Tailored technical assistance and grants will be offered to local businesses and support to vocational education and training will be provided. This will enhance youth employment and facilitate labour mobility across the Green Line.
To build confidence between the Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot communities, the programme will continue to provide substantial financing to the Committee on Missing Persons and the bi-communal Technical Committee on Cultural Heritage. Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot high school students will be offered support to jointly attend the United World Colleges (UWC) as part of the bi-communal scholarship programme. Civil society organisations will receive grants to foster human rights, active citizenship and reconciliation.
Finally, in line with efforts to meet the European Green Deal priorities across the island, the Programme will further promote energy efficiency and renewable energy initiatives.
The Aid Programme for the Turkish Cypriot community aims to facilitate the reunification of Cyprus by encouraging the economic development of the Turkish Cypriot community. It also supports reconciliation, confidence-building measures, and civil society, projects to bring the Turkish Cypriot community closer to the Union, and preparation for the implementation of the acquis.
Between 2006 and 2023, €688 million have been allocated for projects under the Aid Programme. The programme is managed by the Commission's Directorate-General for Structural Reform Support (DG REFORM).
For More information
This year’s programme will continue to contribute to economic development and societal cohesion in Cyprus, playing an important role in facilitating the reunification of Cyprus. The 2023 programme focuses on supporting the implementation of the Halloumi/Hellim PDO package and Green Line trade, and it will continue to finance well-established confidence-building measures. I am convinced that all of this helps create the conditions for resuming Cyprus reunification talks within the UN framework.
Elisa Ferreira, Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms - 12/09/2023
- Publication date
- 12 September 2023
- Representation in Cyprus