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No sole rights for South to inspect Hellim: Denktas

13 February 2015

Deputy Prime Minister Serdar Denktas, has said that the South Cyprus Minister of Agriculture’s declaration that total authority to inspect halloumi-hellim cheese production will belong to the “Republic of Cyprus”, which will also control Turkish Cypriot cheese production “does not comply with the realities”.

Denktas, who is also the minister responsible for the economy, cultural tourism and sports, in a written statement said that the TRNC is actively exerting the necessary efforts to find a common solution in which the Turkish Cypriots, will also be included in the registration of halloumi-hellim cheese in the EU.

He argued: “Both political and legal efforts have been launched with the aim of looking out for our rights as regards this process and we are simultaneously continuing the necessary lobbying activities in order to explain that Hellim is the Turkish Cypriots’ ‘Traditional Product’ as well. Hellim is our traditional product too, as it is of the Greek Cypriots. Therefore, it is not possible for south Cyprus to unilaterally establish an organization and control the Turkish Cypriot producers.

The Greek Cypriot Minister of Agriculture has made an unfortunate statement before the geographical registration process is accepted in the EU. We are following the issue and our initiative on this issue will continue and intensify”.

The sale of Hellim contributes to 25% of the TRNC economy. Meanwhile, Hellim/Halloumi cheese faces fierce competition from other countries such as the UK, the USA and Turkey.

The president of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry, Ali Cirali has said that if they cooperate and find a solution to the halloumi/hellim issue, this will also be a step towards finding a solution to the Cyprus problem. He noted that the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot producers should come together as this is in the interest of both sides.

Source Kibris Gazetesi

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