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Cyprus Investment Programme established under section 111A (2) of the Civil Registry Laws of 2002-2019

Jul 22, 2019 | Insights

Introduction

The Cyprus Investment Programme (CIP), established under Section 111A (2) of the Civil Registry Laws of 2002 to 2019, was approved by the Cyprus Council of Ministers on 13 September 2016, and subsequently amended in May 2018 and February 2019. The latest amendments to the CIP are effective from 15 May 2019 onwards.
By virtue of this Law, the Council of Ministers of Cyprus may grant citizenship by naturalisation to foreign investors, subject to satisfaction of certain conditions (which are considered below):
Non-Cypriot investors and high net worth individuals can apply to acquire Cypriot citizenship through naturalisation by exception subject to satisfying certain conditions and criteria.

 Eligibility Criteria

  • To qualify under the CIP, the main applicant for citizenship must be at least 18 years of age.
  • The main applicant may also add dependents to a citizenship application including his/her spouse and children, as well as parents, to benefit under the CIP.

The definition “Children” includes those up to (and including) the age of 17 and “adult dependents” which are adult children from the ages of 18 up to and including 28 (subject to their application being reviewed by the Council of Ministers prior to their 29th birthday), provided (i) they are financially dependent on the main applicant and (ii) they are students working towards either a first university degree, or a first master’s degree. Additionally, an investor’s child with severe physical or mental disability that makes him or her unable to work is also considered as financially dependent. Parents of the main applicant may be included in the same application provided an additional investment of €500,000 (plus VAT if applicable), is made in residential property in Cyprus.
Further to continue to adhere to or satisfy the criteria and conditions below may result in citizenship being revoked.

 Financial Criteria

Eligible persons must meet the following financial criteria in order to acquire Cypriot Citizenship:

  • Donation of €75,000 to the Cyprus Land Development Corporation plus donation of €75,000 to the Research and Innovation Foundation, subject to certain exceptions and
  • Investment in real estate, land development and infrastructure projects of at least €2m; or
  • Purchase or Establishment or Participation in Cypriot Companies or Businesses of at least €2m where such companies or businesses employ at least 5 EU nationals; or
  • Investment in Alternative Investment Funds or financial assets of Cypriot companies/ organisations that are licenced by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission of at least €2m; or
  • Combination of the above criteria, provided that the total investment will amount up to at least €2m.

In addition to €2m investment the applicant must have purchased a residential property of a minimum value of €500,000 which must be held indefinitely.

  

Terms and Conditions

  • A minimum investment of €2 million.
  • Clean criminal record.
  • Residence Permit in Cyprus. The applicant, prior to his/her naturalization as a Cypriot citizen, must hold a residence permit in Cyprus for 6 months (no requirement to live in Cyprus).
  • Applicants must be holders of a valid Schengen Visa prior to submitting a citizenship application. Third-Country nationals that do not require an entry visa for travelling in European Union Member-States, as well as citizens of European Union Member States are excluded from this obligation.
  • Keep investment for a minimum period of five years.
  • Applicants whose citizenship application has been rejected by another EU member state, will not have the right to apply.

Benefits of CIP

  • Travel, live and work within all EU-Member States.
  • Travel visa-free to more than 150 countries.
  • The investor does not become a tax resident, unless more than 183 days in a calendar year are spent in Cyprus.
  • Not necessary to reside in Cyprus before or after the obtainment of citizenship.
  • Dual citizenship permitted.
  • Passed on to family members: spouse and dependent children.
  • The applicant’s parents are also entitled to apply for Cypriot citizenship provided they own a permanent residence in Cyprus of at least €500,000 (excluding VAT). Their application may be submitted after the investor had acquired Cypriot citizenship.

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