The mild coastal climate of Famagusta was ideal for the cultivation of citrus fruit, especially oranges. From different records and testimonies, it appears that the cultivation of citrus fruit was widespread already from the previous century. The difference however, was that the commercial exploitation of this trade only started in the second half of the twentieth century. The increase in production of citrus fruit however, did pose some problems as neighboring countries were only able to absorb small quantities of the exported fruit. The establishment of direct maritime transportation links between Cyprus and Europe after 1934 somehow eased the problems caused by overproduction and the British market was able to absorb significant quantities from Cyprus . This activity had positive spillover effects for the rest of the economy.
At the end of the 1950's, beginning of the 1960's there was a severe water shortage problem due to over irrigation. This problem was the primary reason why the authorities progressively lessened Famagusta 's economic dependency on the production and exportation of citrus fruits. Luckily, the city developed other profitable activities that became important sources of income and wealth.
The Orange Festival, photo from the book by Z. Iacovides
“20 Photographs from the Occupied Areas”, Publication of the Bank of Cyprus