Cyprus' outgoing finance minister Vasos Shiarly on Wednesday said the cash-strapped country had enough funds to stay solvent until May as it anxiously waits for an international bailout, dpa reported.
"Looking at the data - our fiscal obligations should not reach a problem until May," Shiarly told reporters after holding talks with President-elect Nicos Anastasiades and the country's new finance minister Michael Sarris.
Shiarly who will formally hand over his post on February 28 when the new cabinet is sworn in, said the government would not need to resort to borrowing since it had enough money until the end of May.
The new finance minister, who was selected earlier this week by Anastasiades, said he would be "surprised" if the government was called upon for additional spending and tax cuts than those already agreed under a preliminary bailout with international creditors.
Sarris, 67, a respected economist who spent years working for the World Bank, said the quicker the island secures the bailout with other eurozone members and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) the better it will be for the country.
It is the second time Sarris serves as finance minister in the past decade. He is credited with helping Greek Cypriots enter the euro zone in 2008.
Three days after the island held runoff presidential elections, Anastasiades, which won an outright majority, announced his new eleven-member government on Wednesday.
Aside from Sarris, the new cabinet will also consist of Ioannis Kasoulides in the post of foreign minister. He has previously served as foreign minister and government spokesperson.
The new Cypriot government will have to deal with the immediate challenge of finalizing a financial rescue bailout of up to 17.5 billion euros (22.8 billion dollars).
Compared to the hundreds of billions of euros used to prevent Greece, Ireland and Portugal from collapsing, the sum needed for Cyprus' banks and state coffers is relatively small. But, in real terms, the loan is equal to the island's entire economy.
While Cyprus has made some austerity cuts demanded by creditors under a preliminary bailout agreement - including slashing civil service wages and hiking taxes - it has balked at others, such as major pension reform and privatizing state-owned companies.
The new president will also have to convince reluctant creditor countries, namely Germany, that Cyprus deserves help after its banks lost billions of euros on bad Greek debt.