Keywords: economic embargoes, entrepreneurship, gender issues, North Cyprus, Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, Turkish Cypriots, European Union, Republic of Cyprus, Turkey, small businesses, United Nations buffer zones
The dilemma of the Turkish Cypriot entrepreneur: the view from the 'Green Line'
Turkish Cypriots have a unique yet strange relationship with the European Union. The ground they stand on is 'in' Europe, as the island of Cyprus acceded to the EU on 1st May 2004. By taking out a passport from the Republic of Cyprus, Turkish Cypriots can become EU citizens, but while continuing to live on the 'other side' of the Green Line, they are neither able to vote in any EU elections nor have any right to say in the EU. Politically, they stand outside of Europe, looking over the Green Line that separates them from their Greek Cypriot neighbours. No country in Europe recognises their state, the Turkish Republic of North Cyprus, but Turkish Cypriots believe that they are European. A recent survey of 1,000 entrepreneurs in the region discovered that small businesses are economically productive despite economic embargoes.