Chronology of Telecoms in Cyprus

1974 In the summer of 1974, Turkey invades Cyprus and occupies 37% of the island, from which 70% of the national income emanated. As a result 200.000 Greek Cypriots (2/5 of the island's Greek population) were forcibly evicted from their homes and the fate of 1.619 persons is still unknown. Since then a garrison of 40.000 troops remains on the occupied part of the island.

The Cyprus Telecommunications Authority, as a result of the Turkish occupation, lost approximately 33% of its assets and 25% of its subscribers and was deprived of approximately 50% of its income.

In spite of the heavy losses and the gloomy outlook, the Authority decided to refocus its development programme and to press on with its implementation, recognising that sufficient and efficient telecommunication services were of extreme importance in the efforts of the government to rebuild the economy of the country:

  • reinstatement of the service to parts of the island which were served by installations that were in the occupied areas,
  • expansion of its network in the non-occupied areas in order to meet expected business demand,
  • implementation of a balanced development programme, for rural and urban areas,
  • enhancing of its international network facilities by laying submarine cables connecting Cyprus with Greece and Lebanon,
  • provision of satisfactory service both local and overseas,
  • introduction of measures to avoid interruptions with regard to ship-to-shore and ground-to-air services.
  • Cyprus becomes a member of INTELSAT (International Telecommunications Satellite Organisation), where is represented by CYTA.

1975 Commissioning of the “APHRODITE” and “ADONIS” submarine cable systems connecting Cyprus with Greece and Lebanon respectively.

Automation of International Telephony.

Automation of the Telex Service.

1980 The "Makarios 1" Satellite Earth Station is put into operation.

Cyprus becomes a member of EUTELSAT (European Telecommunications Satellite Organisation), where it is represented by CYTA.

1981 Commissioning of the “APOLLO” submarine cable system connecting Cyprus with Greece.

Introduction of the Telefax Service.

1982 The "Makarios 2" Satellite Earth Station is put into operation.

1986 Introduction of digital technology in the Authority's network. The digital network is introduced by using the overlay approach in parallel with the existing analogue network.

Introduction of the Paging Service.

The "Makarios 3" Satellite Earth Station is put into operation.

1987 Installation of the first telephone booths operating with telecards (prepaid card phones).

1988 Introduction of the Mobile Telephone Service.

Installation of Emergency Telephone Systems along the Nicosia-Limassol highway.

Additional Telephone Facilities are provided to the public.

1989 Liberalisation of the supply of telecommunications terminal equipment.

1990 The Packet Switched Public Data Network (CYTAPAC) is put into operation.

A fourth Satellite Earth Station is put into operation.

1991 Two additional Satellite Earth Stations are put into operation.