Greek Cypriots owners of property in North Cyprus are no longer applying to the Immovable Property Commission (IPC) as they did in the past, mainly because of legal measures taken by the Greek Cypriot authorities and because of the problems experienced by the commission in paying property compensations.
Chairman of the IPC Eyfer Said Erkmen, told Turkish Cypriot daily ‘Kibris’ that although the IPC had awarded £302,145,102 for a total of 1,001 cases, which had been concluded to date, so far, only £192,145,102 had been paid out. Erkmen added that since Turkey has given up allocating money to the commission due to the fact that the ‘serefiye vergisi’ (a tax levied on an area where land values have risen), has not become law, the commission was not able to pay the remaining 110 million pounds sterling.
Erkmen went on to say that “17,586 plots of land had been ‘Turkified’ so far in our country”.
Evaluating the reasons behind the lack of interest by the Greek Cypriots in applying to IPC as they had in the past, Erkmen said that this is due to the difficulties experienced in verifying the ownership of the property, because of legal measures taken by the Greek Cypriot side and also due to the fact that the process has been prolonged.
He went on adding that the Greek Cypriots in the past were not able to mortgage their immovable property in the north, but now, since they are able to do so at the banks, they no longer apply to the IPC as they did.
Erkmen also said that there are a total of 166 hotels in North Cyprus and that only 33 out of them are built on Turkish Cypriot-owned land.
Referring to the circular sent by South Cyprus to the embassies and travel agencies abroad asking them to warn tourists not to visit North Cyprus and stay overnight at these hotels, Erkmen stressed the need for all hotels which are built to a Greek Cypriot land to be “Turkified”, so that tourists have the right to move around and visit freely the TRNC and the for Greek Cypriots not to have this advantage in their hands.