The recent amendments to the Naturalisation of Investors in
Cyprus by Exception Scheme, based on subsection (2) in
Section 111A of the Civil Registry Laws of 2002-2015 was
approved by the Cyprus Council of Ministers on the 13 September
The positive amendments are set to further enhance incentives to
attract more foreign investment into Cyprus, and further solidifies
Cyprus' position as the leading EU Citizenship by Investment
program. The program remains one of the top CBI choices for
high net worth individuals around the world.
Further to Council of Ministers amendments, announced on 13
September and the elaboration, as announced by the Cyprus Gazette
on 16 September 2016, Cyprus has reduced its investment criteria to
a minimum of €2 million for residential real estate, and made
the program even simpler and more appealing. There are a number of
reasons the Cyprus Citizenship by Investment (CBI) Program is now
considered to be the most attractive in Europe, including:
There is no requirement to make a donation to the local
government, in contrast to many other citizenship programs
Cyprus does not require applicants to live on the island prior,
during or after the application process, unlike all other EU
countries with citizenship programs that impose some form of
Applicants are able to receive a Cypriot passport within 3
months of filing an application, being by far the fastest route to
Simple and straightforward application process with no
requirements to disclose source of wealth or funds, no medical
testing, and no language requirements.
Approved by the EU (being one of only two CBI programs in
Europe with official EU approval).
Below are listed the investment options available to Non EU
investors, who can apply for citizenship for their whole family,
including spouse, children, adult dependants and parents:
Option 1: EUR 2 million (real estate)
An investment, held for three years, of EUR 2 million (plus VAT
of 0%, 5%, or 19%) in residential real estate situated in
The investment in real estate must be retained for a minimum
period of 3 years, after which point the overall investment in real
estate can be reduced to a minimum of €500,000 in residential
property (excluding any VAT that was paid on initial
Examples of above includes the following (all prices below are
quoted before VAT, if any):
Purchase one villa for €1.5 million, and one apartment for
€500,000. Sell the villa in 3 years' time.
Purchase one villa for €2 million and sell in 3 years'
time, but simultaneously purchase a residential property(ies) for a
minimum of €500,000.
Option 2: €2.5 million (combination of real
estate and/or investments)
A 3 year investment of €2 million within any of the
following investment categories:
Interest bearing Cyprus government bonds, provided the
investment does not exceed €500,000 (current annual yield of
such retail bonds is 0.75%).
An investment held for three years, of EUR 2 million (plus VAT
of 0%, 5%, or 19%) in "eligible real estate" situated in
Land, provided there is a development plan in place.
Creation, acquisition or participation in a Cyprus company or
business where the applicant is a majority shareholder, with
activities in Cyprus, and employing 5 Cypriot or EU nationals, who
have been resident in Cyprus for a duration of 5 years prior to the
filing of the citizenship application.
Alternative Investment Fund (AIF) or financial assets of a
Cyprus entity licensed by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange
Commission (CySec), with activities in Cyprus.
Mix and match any of the above options.
EUR 500,000 (plus VAT of 0%, 5%, or 19%) in residential
property, which must be held indefinitely.
Overall, the amended Cyprus CBI program coupled with the fact
that the Cypriot taxation system is consistently voted as one of
the most favourable in Europe (with the newly introduced
"non-domicile" regime which results in zero taxation of
worldwide dividends and interest income, for period of 17 years),
ranks Cyprus highly, for all serious high net worth individual
We are leaders in the area of Immigration Services in Cyprus,
and well positioned to assist clients with the preparation and
filing of a Citizenship Application. We are frequently
engaged by some of the world's largest and most reputable
international law firms, accounting firms and family offices.
For further information on the existing or newly revised Cyprus
CBI program, and to further discuss your investment options, feel
free to contact our
immigration team who will be happy to assist.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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We would like to take this opportunity to inform you of important amendments introduced to the Cypriot Citizenship by Investment program on 16 September 2016 (as published in the official Government Gazette).
Europe has long established itself as the most sought after
region in terms of high net worth immigration, accounting for over
half of the total number of global citizenship applications, with
the Caribbean in second place, followed by North America in third.
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