Fast Track Procedure to Cyprus Citizenship & Residency
The very successful “Cyprus Citizenship by investment” programme and the fast track “Cyprus Permanent Residence” programme enacted by the Cyprus Government in the last few years, rightfully render Cyprus as the “jurisdiction of choice” for many high net worth individuals and their families who decide to live, invest and set up their businesses in Cyprus.
Key factors that make Cyprus an attractive destination for investment, is the highly specialized human capital, the reliable legislative and regulatory framework, the stable tax system and the safety and stability conditions prevailing in the country.
Advantages of Obtaining Cyprus Citizenship by Investment
Today, a Cyprus citizenship which is also part of EU citizenship that offers the opportunity to create wealth across borders, to limit visa restrictions when traveling and it opens county borders for individuals, which is not always available when using the passport of the country you were born in.
As of 1 January 2017, Cypriot citizens had visa-free or visa on arrival access to 158 countries and territories, ranking the Cypriot passport 16th in terms of travel freedom according to the Henley visa restrictions index.
Benefits of Cyprus citizenship:
- You can travel, live, work, and study anywhere in the European Economic Area(European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland).
- You can enjoy same rights as any European Citizen.
- The investors whole family can obtain the Cyprus Citizenship by Investment.
- Cyprus government allows Dual citizenship.
- Travel to 158 countries without a visa.
- Offers an effective tool for family and tax planning.
- Cyprus citizenship can become an additional insurance against political instability if needed.
- Cyprus has zero inheritance tax, gift tax, and wealth tax.
- Enables to some of the highest education and healthcare institution in the world.
- Fast track procedure to obtaining Cyprus citizenship by investment in 3 months.
Legal basis of Cyprus Citizenship by Investment
Cyprus Citizenship by Investment is available to investors who apply the SCHEME FOR NATURALISATION OF INVESTORS IN CYPRUS BY EXCEPTION on the basis of subsection (2) of section 111A of the Civil Registry Laws of 2002-2015.
One of the main purposes of the Cyprus citizenship by investment policy of the Republic of Cyprus is to further encourage Foreign Direct Investment and to attract high net worth individuals to settle and do business in Cyprus.
On the basis of the Scheme, a non-Cypriot citizen, who meets one of the following economic criteria (A), either personally or through a company/ companies in which he/ she participates as a shareholder – in proportion to his holding percentage, or through investments done by his/her spouse or jointly with the spouse or even as a high-ranking senior manager of a company/ companies that meets one of the economic criteria (A), may apply for the acquisition of the Cypriot citizenship through naturalization by exception.
The applicant should have made the necessary investments during the three years preceding the date of the application and must retain the said investments for a period of at least three years as from the date of the naturalization.
Criteria for Cyprus Citizenship by Investment
- Investment in real estate, land development, and infrastructure projects. The investor must have made an investment of at least €2,0 million for the purchase or construction of buildings or for the construction of other land development projects (residential or commercial developments, developments in the tourism sector) or other infrastructure projects.
- Purchase or Establishment or Participation in Cypriot Companies or Businesses. The investor should have made a purchase or should have participated in companies or organizations established and operating in the Republic of Cyprus with investment costs of at least €2,0 million. The invested funds shall be channeled towards the financing of the investment objectives of these companies exclusively in Cyprus, based on a specific investment plan.
- Investment in Alternative Investment Funds or financial assets of Cypriot companies or Cypriot organizations that are licensed by CySec. The investor should have bought units of at least €2,0 million from alternative investment funds (AIF) established in the Republic of Cyprus, licensed and supervised by the CySec and whose investments are made exclusively in the Republic of Cyprus, in investments that meet the criteria of this Scheme or in areas approved by the Minister of Finance.
- Combination of the aforementioned investments. The investor may proceed with a combination of the above investments, provided that the total investment will amount up to at least €2,0 million. Within this criterion (combination of investments) the applicant may purchase special government bonds of the Republic of Cyprus, up to €500.000, which will be issued by the Public Debt Management Office of the Ministry of Finance, on condition that the investor will retain these bonds for a three year period.
Investments Eligibility and Other terms
- Clean Criminal Record. The applicant must have a clean criminal record.
- Residence in the Republic of Cyprus. the investor must possess a permanent privately-owned residence in the Republic of Cyprus, the purchase price of which must be at least €500.000, plus V.A.T. If the applicant has invested in housing unit/units on the basis of the aforementioned criterion A.1, the purchase of another permanent residence in Cyprus will not be required.
- Residence Permit in Cyprus. The investor, prior to his/her naturalization as a Cypriot citizen must hold a residence permit in Cyprus.
- Investment in land under development is included in this criterion, provided that an investment plan for the development of the purchased land will be included in the application.
- The investor who invests Cyprus business shall be evaluated to verify that the companies or organizations have proven physical presence in Cyprus, with significant activity and turnover and employ at least five (5) Cypriot or citizens of European Union member-states.
Submission of Documents for Cyprus Citizenship by Investment
1.Clean Criminal Record: Certificate of Clean Criminal Record from the country of origin and the country of residence (if different).
2.Residence in the Republic of Cyprus: a. Contract of Sale. b. Title Deeds or Proof of Registration of the contract with the Lands and Surveys Department. C. Proof of payment of the agreed purchase price. D. Copy of the wire transfer to a Cypriot commercial banking institution in the name of the seller or the seller’s company. E. An evaluation certificate from an independent registered land surveyor, if required by the Ministry of Interior or the Ministry of Finance.
3.Criteria regarding the investment (when applicable): a. Certificate of Registration of the company/ companies by the Registrar of Companies. B. Certificate of shareholders by the Registrar of Companies or certificates evidencing that the applicant is the beneficiary owner of the company/ companies. C.Audited accounts of the company (or companies) for the last three years preceding the year of the application. D.If the applicant is a high-ranking senior manager, the submission of the employment contract and the receipt from the Department of Inland Revenue are additionally required. E.If the investment is made by the spouse of the applicant or jointly, a marriage certificate is required.
Depends on the cases and types of investment, other documents may need.
Cyprus Citizenship by Investment Application Process
- Submission of the Citizenship application at the Ministry of Interior.
- Submission of the Immigration Permit application at the Civil Registry and Migration Department.
- Collection of applicant’s biometric data.
- Issuance of the Immigration Permit.
- Once the application is approved, the applicant will be able to take all actions for the acquisition of the Citizenship and the issue of a Cypriot passport.
Cyprus Citizenship by Investment Program Competitive Advantages
- Investments in a variety of sectors of the Cyprus economy.
- Combination of investments is available.
- Low risk of investments in the Cyprus economy with the potential for high returns.
- No donation to the Cyprus Government is required.
- The investment may be realized after 3 years.
- Once the application is approved it has an immediate effect.
- Parents of the investor are eligible to apply.
- The amount of investment required is reasonable.
- Express procedure to obtain an EU passport.
- Reside, work & study freely in any EU member countries.