Sun, sea and happiness for Greek Cypriots: study

NICOSIA (Reuters Life!) - It might have something to do with all those sunny days, but Greek Cypriots are by and large a very happy bunch, a survey showed on Thursday.

Some 89 percent of respondents to a survey on the Mediterranean island said they were content with their lot in life, RAI Consultancy said in an annual poll charting social and economic perceptions.

“The level of satisfaction of Cypriots with their lifestyles has been steadily high throughout the years,” said Olympios Toumazos, President of RAI Consultants, which carried out the Cyprus-barometer survey commissioned by Marfin Popular Bank.

The poll also found 88 percent of islanders wanted to ban smoking in enclosed public places, a surprisingly high turnout for a nation of smokers. It was based on responses of 976 individuals from December 2007 to January 2008.

Toumazos said social conditions like strong family bonds and a Mediterranean temperament which makes it more acceptable for people to vent their frustrations could play a role in making people content.

“The climate could also play a significant part .. It’s not based on scientific findings, but they are observations,” he said.

Reporting by Sarah Ktisti, writing by Michele Kambas, editing by Paul Casciato