"This is destructive for us," said an official with Cyprus-based shipping company EDT Offshore, who spoke on condition of anonymity because his company did not authorize him to speak to the media.
"We have to pay our crews' salaries and that's $500,000, while we have to pay as much for our office staff by March 28 and we don't have access to our bank accounts," he said. "These are people who need to pay their bills, have obligations to meet."
Authorities in the Greek port of Piraeus have prevented one of three EDT ships from leaving until the company pays it port dues. That means the ship can't fulfill its contract with clients, meaning possible losses for the company, which has a fleet of 18 vessels.
Fitch credit rating agency warned Tuesday that it may downgrade Cyprus further into "junk" status amid concerns that the shock from the banking sector's "systemic failure" heightens the risk to public finances.
Also Tuesday, the chairman of the board of Bank of Cyprus, Andreas Artemis, and four other board members tendered their resignations, a statement from the bank said. The board did not accept the resignations, which will become valid only if not withdrawn in a week's time.
Meanwhile, Britain flew in some 13 million euros over the weekend to pay about 3,000 British civilian and military personnel serving at the two military bases that it retained after its former colony Cyprus gained independence.
The Ministry of Defense last week flew in 1 million euros in cash in case automatic teller machines on Cyprus shut down.
Elena Becatoros in Nicosia and Juergen Baetz in Brussels contributed to this report.
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