Cyprus Telecommunications Authority




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Numbers you may like to know are:

Directory inquiries              11892

International calls               198     (operator)

Faults                                   197

Prefix codes

If you call a number with 99 in front, it is a mobile number and will cost you more.

22                    Nicosia

25                    Limassol

24                    Larnaca

26                    Paphos

23                    Ayia Napa

        Local calls were very reasonable, now welike using the internet.

*Please be aware that a lot of phone numbers in Cyprus are changing, the redirection message is only left on for 2 months, so many numbers in the phone book are invalid and may just ring out to fool you.
If your contact doesn't answer, check the number with 11892


The article below was written by Cyta.

I am very upset by them as they have stolen about 7000 Euros from me. Entirely my fault, as I had a standing order/direct debit thing so they could get paid whilst I was away on extended sick leave. My fault, because I believed the lie that they are a reputable company.

They are not. They are thieves like all the other thieves.

Be careful. Do not set up direct debits to anyone.

And if they can't produce a bogus authorization, go further than I did.


Value-Added services

bulletPacket Switched Public Data Network (CYPAPAC)
bulletX.400 Message Handling System
bulletInternet access (CYTANET)
bulletIntegrated Services Digital Network (ISDN)

Mobile services

bulletNMT 900
bulletGSM type (CYTAGSM)


CYTA’s ultimate aim is to gradually establish an all digital environment, working towards this during the last decade by implementation of an ambitious development programme of upgrading its network through the introduction of digital technology. Cyprus can now boast to have one of the highest degrees of digitalisation, with over 83% of the switching capacity and 97% of the transmission network being digital (it is anticipated that the whole network being fully digital by the year 2000)

In addition the Authority is in the process of implementing a full scale Synchronous Digital hierarchy (SDH) Network at national, regional and local level, which is planned to be completed in phased by year 2000.

In line with its policy of maintaining a balanced urban/rural development the Authority continually expands and upgrades its rural network . The number of direct exchange lines per 100 inhabitants is 58.5 whilst a density of 63 lines per 100 is aimed for year 2000.


The island is primarily connected around the world through 8 submarine cables (5 being fibre optic technology ), 6 major and a number of smaller satellite earth stations. These stations operate via INTELSAT and EUTELSAT as well as via the Russian satellite network to serve the ever increasing telecommunications traffic between Cyprus-Russia and other countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States.

In line with its policy of establishing Cyprus as a telecommunications hub in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East region, CYTA has, over the past few years, invested heavily in order to create a submarine fibre optic cable network connecting Cyprus with neighbouring countries and allowing world-wide cable access. Currently submarine fibre optic cable systems connect Cyprus with Greece, Syria, Israel, Lebanon and Egypt. The later constitutes part of the vast submarine cable network SEA-ME-WE2 which stretches from Singapore to Marseilles with CYTA being one of the 60 telecommunications organisations which have participated in its establishment.

Furthermore CYTA (with an investment of US$ 28.5 million) has made Cyprus a landing point of SEA-ME-WE3 (a 38,000 km long 10 Gbit/s state-of –the-art submarine fibre optic cable network) linking the Pacific Rim, South Eastern Asia, the Middle East and Western Europe.

CYTA is also involved in the establishment of a submarine fibre optic cable system in the Black Sea (BSFOCS) which will provide the countries of the Black Seas region with access to Europe and the Middle East.

CYTA has recently signed an agreement as to become a landing point for the LEV submarine cable system, connecting Israel, Cyprus and Italy (operational by the end of 1998)

CYTA’s aim for Cyprus is to be a telecommunications hub not only in terms of the establishment of an extensive network infrastructure in the area but also with regard to the provision of a number of services, by forming strategic alliances with other telecommunications organisations.

Makarios earth satelite station.JPG (37826 bytes)  



The history of telecommunications in Cyprus began on 9 November 1870, when it was decided to link telegraphically Cyprus with Lattakia by a submarine cable which was installed by the British "Newall Company". This telegraphic link was the first step in the development of telecommunications in Cyprus. At that time, the commercial centres were Nicosia and Larnaca. Larnaca being also the main port of the island as well as the town where all the consulates were located.

Under a convention concluded on 4 June 1878, England occupied and administered Cyprus. During the same year the "Eastern Telegraph Company" obtained license to install a new telegraphic cable which linked Larnaca with Alexandria and then with London through other submarine cables.

During the first decade of the 20th Century, the Government installed a telegraphic network providing service to the railway stations.

By Order in Council of 1904 it was made unlawful to install, erect, maintain or use any ‘telegraph apparatus’ with which messages could be transmitted or received without a licence from the High Commissioner. In 1913 the contents of the above Order were embodied in the Wireless Telegraphy Law.

Until 1925 telephony in Cyprus was practically non-existent. There was only a limited Government network used exclusively by the Government. During the same period the Forest Department maintained telephone service between the Forest Stations.

In 1925 a family from Limassol named Yiordamli installed a private telephone network providing service to about 100 subscribers in Limassol. It was installed without licence until an official licence was granted approximately a year later.

Telephone (agreement) Law (cap.283) of 1930 authorised the Governor to enter into an agreement with the "Imperial and International Communications Ltd" (this company was created by the merging of "Eastern" and "Association" Telegraph Companies). Under this agreement, the Company would take over the Government telephones and establish and maintain the telephone service in Cyprus. The agreement was effected in 1933. In 1933 the first comprehensive legislation regarding Telecommunications, the Telegraphy Law (cap.282) was enacted.

Eventually in 1934 "Imperial and International Communications Ltd" was succeeded by "Cable and Wireless Ltd". In 1936 the latter installed and operated a telephone network for local telecommunications that was extended to overseas telecommunications in May 1951. Before the establishment of the Cyprus Telecommunications Authority and the undertaking by it of the service. Cable and Wireless Ltd had the exclusive rights and the sole responsibility for telecommunications in Cyprus.

The inland Telecommunications Service Law 67 of 1965 (cap.302) is a landmark in the history of Telecommunications in Cyprus. This Law established a Corporate Body, the "Cyprus inland Telecommunications Authority" which took over as for 1 January 1955, the inland telecommunications. During the transitional period of 1 January 1955 to 30 June 1956 Cable and Wireless Ltd continued to provide and operate the Inland Telecommunications, as agent of the Authority by agreement. The aforesaid law is a comprehensive legislation that regulates the objects, functions and mode of operation of the Authority, which acquired inland telecommunications from the Cable and Wireless Ltd and undertook the responsibility to continue employment of the officers of the company.

On 1 April 1961, following an agreement with Cable and Wireless Ltd, the Authority also acquired the overseas telecommunications. The telecommunications Service Law 34/62 amended the basic Law 67/54 and the Authority was renamed Cyprus Telecommunications Authority. Thus the concentration of all the Telecommunications service under a Cyprus Corporate Body was completed.

The first 25 years of the existence and operation of the Cyprus Telecommunications Authority have fully justified its creation. It was a period marked with rapid progress and the provision of a better and more adequate service to the public, both inland and overseas, for the general benefit of the Republic of Cyprus.


Only during the last 150 years or so have significant steps been made to meet the instinctive need of man to communicate quickly. The invention of the telephone by Alexander Graham Bell in 1876 led to a faster and more direct means of communication. However, in those days the telephone was not yet suited for long-distance communications, until telegraphy. Ever since the strides of technology into a world of satellite communications, fibre optics and digitalisation have been spectacular (although Cyprus having been under foreign rule for many centuries was slower to follow these developments).

The Cyprus Telecommunications Authority (CYTA) a corporate body established by law to provide telecommunication services nationally and internationally, has made substantial investments in the past few year, towards upgrading its telecommunications network and providing a number of new advanced services to meet the ever increasing market demand.

CYTA has already accomplished one of it’s main aims, to make Cyprus a telecommunications hub in the Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East region, in so doing contributing to the realisation of the Government’s objective to make Cyprus a business and information centre in the area.

CYTA’s decision to invest in state-of-the-art technology and keep abreast of new developments in the field of telecommunications has played a significant role in the island’s economic reactivation since the 1974 Turkish invasion.


Conventional telecommunications services


Cyprus telecomunications building Nicosia.JPG (33483 bytes)




Chronology of the Development of Telecommunications in Cyprus

1871 -  First submarine telegraph cable laid between Cyprus - Syria (Ayios Theodoros – Lattakia)

1878 - A second submarine telegraph cable laid between Cyprus – Egypt (Larnaca – Alexandria)

1911 -  Appearance of the first telephones which were connected to small Government or private networks.

1924 -  Installation of the first private telephone network in Limassol by George Yiordamlis. It provided service to about 100 subscribers in the town of Limassol.

1928 -  A third submarine telegraph cable, laid between Larnaca and Haifa, is put into operation.

1936 -  Introduction of manual public telephone by Cable & Wireless Ltd.

1951 -  Automatic dialling within local areas is introduced in Nicosia. Other cities follow within the decade.

Introduction of International Radiotelephone.

1955 -  Establishment of the Cyprus Inland Telecommunications Authority (C.I.T.A.), a Corporate Body, which undertakes the provision of inland telecommunications.

1961 -  C.I.T.A. is renames into the Cyprus Telecommunications Authority (CYTA) following the take over of external telecommunications from Cable and Wireless Ltd.

    Cyprus becomes a member of ITU (International Telecommunications Union) and CTO (Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation) where it is represented by CYTA.

1962 -  Cyprus becomes a member of CEPT (European Commission of Posts and Telecommunications) where it is represented by CYTA.

1968 -  The Cyprus – Greece Tropospheric Link is established.

1969 -  Introduction of Telex Service.

1970 -  Introduction of Islandwide Automatic Telephone.

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 1619 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 loses and the gloomy outlook, the Authority decided to refocus its development programme and to press on with its implementation recognising that sufficient and efficient telecommunications services were of extreme importance in the efforts of the Government to rebuild the economy of the country.

bulletreinstate the service to parts of the island which were served by installations that were in the occupied areas.
bulletExpansion of its network in the non-occupied areas, in order to meet expected business demands
bulletImplementation of a balanced development programme, for rural and urban areas
bulletEnhancing of its international network facilities by laying submarine cables connecting Cyprus with Greece and Lebanon.
bulletProvision of satisfactory services, both local and overseas.
bulletIntroduction 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 it 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 "Markarios 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.

Additional telephone facilities are provided to the public.

Installation of emergency telephone systems along the Nicosia-Limassol highway.

1989 -  Liberalisation of the provision 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.

1992 -  Cyprus becomes a member of INMARSAT (International Mobile Satellite Organisation) where it is represented by the Authority.

1993 -  Introduction of the Audiotex Service.

1994 -  Introduction of the Videoconferencing Service.

Three submarine fibre optic cable systems are put into operation, connecting Cyprus with Israel (CIOS), Greece (APHRODITE 2) and Egypt (the latter constituting part of the International Submarine Fibre Optic Cable System SEA-ME-WE 2).

A seventh Satellite Earth Station is put into operation.

A satellite link is established between Cyprus and Russia through a Russian satellite, to serve the ever increasing telecommunication requirements between the two countries.

1995 -  CYTA decides to invest in the INMARSAT-P affiliated Company which will introduce the global handheld mobile telephone service by the year 2000.

Introduction of the Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) and Voicemail.

Two additional submarine fibre optic cable systems are put into operation, connecting Cyprus with Syria (UGARIT) and Lebanon (CADMOS).

CYTA provides access to Internet through the CYTANET service.

1996 -  New Customer Service Office operate in Nicosia and Limassol.

1997 -  Introduction of ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network).

Introduction of X.400 Message Handling System.

CYTA signs an agreement for the construction of the SEA-ME-WE3 submarine fibre optic cable system, which will connect Northern Europe with Far East and the Pacific Rim.

CYTA expands overseas. Digimed Communications Ltd a fully owned subsidiary of CYTA signed an agreement with Matra Marconi Space (MMS) for the creation of EAST Ltd Company (Euro-African Satellite Telecommunications) and the Middle East.

1998 -  CYTA signs and agreement for the construction of the LEV submarine fibre optic cable system, which will connect Israel with Cyprus and Italy.

CYTA continues to expand and upgrade its network through the steady introduction of state-of-the-art digital technology which currently comprises about 84% of its switching and over 97% of its transmission network.

Over the past few years, the Authority has embarked on an ambitious development programme aiming at making Cyprus a telecommunications hub in the area and a centre of advanced telecommunications services.

new Cyprus telecomunications building Nicosia.JPG (20549 bytes)

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