Cyprus Citizenship by Investment: the Scheme for Investors’ Naturalization in the Republic of Cyprus amendments by Exception. This scheme is based on subsection (2) in section 111A (Civil Registry Laws of 2002-2015). The amendments are strategically aimed at attracting Foreign Direct Investments as well as encouraging homegrown investments.
Before Naturalization, a permanent residence permit is issued (unless applicant(s) already holds a temporary permit).
The amendment (revised scheme) takes full effect from November 1, 2016.
Cyprus Citizenship Investment applicants
The following applies to the Cyprus Citizenship by Investment:
Any non-Cypriot citizen can apply for Cypriot citizenship through naturalization by exception as long as they meet the economic criteria (see below), either personally, by spousal or company association i.e. if they participate as a shareholder, or make investments in a company (individually, jointly, or by company association). A high-ranking senior manager can apply for Cypriot citizenship through naturalization by exception as long as they have received a remuneration that generates for Cyprus tax revenues (at least €100,000 over a 3-year period) and the said tax has been settled or prepaid. An individual can apply can apply for Cypriot citizenship through naturalization if they are qualified (via making the necessary investments during a 3 year period prior to application), and such investments must be retained for 3 more years after being naturalized. If a successful Cyprus Citizenship Investment applicant is found at a later time (during periodic inspections) to have breached any criteria, terms or condition of the scheme, their granted naturalization could be revoked.
- Investment level reduced to €2M – €2.5M (previously €2.5M – €3M)
- Applications no longer collective but submitted as stand-alone
- Economic criteria combination introduced
- Investors’ parents get to obtain Cyprus citizenship (€500.000 permanent resident)
- Bank deposits criterion abolished
Real estate, infrastructure projects, and land development investment.
The applicant is required to have made at least a €2.0 million investment for projects under this platform (land development) in either commercial, residential or in the tourism sector, purchased or constructed buildings (real estate), or other infrastructure projects. However, making an investment in land that is located in building zones of zero development is inconsequential.
Cypriot Companies and Organizations Financial Asset Investments
Applicants are required to have purchased or participated in organizations and/or companies established and operating in Cyprus with at least €2.0 million in investments. These investments will be used to finance the company’s investment objectives (exclusively in Cyprus), in accordance with specific investment plans. Such applications would be evaluated, with verifications of the company/organization made to ascertain their physical presence in the country (with significant activity) as well as having at least 5 Cypriot or EU member state citizens underemployment. The minimum number (5) of citizens is increased if there is more than one applicant (applying simultaneously or almost simultaneously) in the said company/organization. Employees of the company/organization are also required to have legally and continuously been a Cyprus resident during the 5 years prior to the submission of the application.
Alternative Investment Funds/Financial Assets of Cypriot Companies/Organizations Licensed by CySec
Applicants are required to have bought at least 2.0 million worth of AIF (alternative investment funds) established in the country and licensed and supervised by the CySec. These investments must meet the scheme criteria and must be in Minister of Finance approved sectors. These investments must be made in companies having a proven physical presence in Cyprus as well as having substantial economic activity in the country. The purchase of AIF units by another AIF are considered ineligible.
Combination of All the Mentioned Investments
Cyprus Citizenship Investment applicants are required to have made a joint investment of at least €2.0 million in all the aforementioned investment options. If the requirement is met, the applicant can buy a maximum of €500,000 special government bonds of the Republic of Cyprus (issued by the Finance Ministry), the investor is however required to retain the bonds for a period of 3 years.
To invest in the special government bond, investors are required to:
- Have a clean criminal record
- Be a Cyprus resident (Own a residence in the Republic of Cyprus)
- Hold a residency permit in Cyprus