The aim of this paper is twofold. The first is to examine whether efforts of the Republic of Cyprus to establish itself as an offshore financial centre present any problems for its desired accession and integration to the European Union. The second objective is to discuss the solutions available to Cyprus as an Offshore Financial Centre (OFC). It attempts to outline the 'problematique' of the OFC through a theoretical debate known within the field of International Political Economy as competing or alternative forms of capitalism. This theoretical exposition aims to reflect on how OFCs affect onshore activity in the nearby mainland(s) and in the regional financial system. The second objective of the paper, that of introducing the options available to Cyprus, is discussed within the context of a second debate. This lies in the subfield of economics known as Institutional Economics, and discusses issues of unilateral liberalisation and harmonisation of institutional frameworks and policies, both from the perspective of an integrated global environment.
Cyprus, European Union, accession, offshore financial centre
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