Cyprus and Malta brace for the euro

On 1 January 2008 Malta and Cyprus abandon their national currencies and formally adopt the euro. Officials in both countries are preparing themselves - and banks, companies and consumers - for the big changeover. The central banks in both countries have been leading the process with the governors losing no opportunity to stress the historic significance of euro accession. They have also tried to provide reassurance that the process will be painless and trouble-free.

Of course, in doing so, they