Cyprus offers a fairly wide range of residency programmes, which apply to non-EU nationals.
Successful applicants who receive a Cyprus residence permit, also receive the following benefits:
- The right to reside, settle and stay indefinitely in Cyprus;
- Use of embassies in Cyprus to apply for a Schengen Visa;
- The option to include their spouse and qualifying dependent children on the same application;
- Currently, there are no language requirements in place regarding the Cyprus PR programmes;
- Access to high quality educational institutions and medical facilities;
- Minimal ongoing physical presence or residency requirements (not applicable to the temporary permit);
- Multiple personal and corporate tax benefits;
- Eligibility to apply for Cyprus citizenship by naturalisation after seven years.
Permanent Residency Programme (PRP) – 'Fast Track'
The Cyprus Permanent Residence Programme (PRP) provides successful applicants with permanent residence status within approximately six months.
The main qualification requirements are as follows:
To qualify, applicants are required to make a minimum investment of €300,000 (plus VAT, if property-related) into one of the following investment options:
- Qualifying residential or commercial real estate;
- Investment in share capital of a Cypriot Company with activities and staff in Cyprus;
- Investment in shares of a Cyprus Investment Organization for Collective Investments (type AIF, AIFLNP, RAIF).
Temporary / Retirement PR Programmes
A visitors' visa – which must be renewed annually – allows an individual and their qualifying dependants, to live in Cyprus as a visitor, without employment rights.
The main qualification requirements for this kind of visa are as follows:
- An annual income, (sourced outside Cyprus), of a minimum value of €24,000, which increases by 20% for a spouse and by 15% for each dependent child;
- Actual physical presence and residence in Cyprus. It is essential that a holder of the temporary residence permit, should stay out of the country for no more than three months at a time, because this could result in the permit being cancelled or removed from the applicant.
Companies of Foreign Interest
The Council of Ministers of the Republic of Cyprus, (approved on October 15th 2021), the "Strategy for Attracting Businesses for Activities or/and Expansion of their Activities in Cyprus".
The Strategy is a very important initiative towards attracting both international investments and talent. The existing investment policy has been radically reviewed, broadened and simplified to include a series of actions and reforms in several areas of intervention, aiming to enhance Cyprus' position as an international high-growth business centre.
Eligible businesses must meet one of the following criteria:
- The majority of the company's shares are owned by third-country nationals;
- The Ultimate Beneficial Owner (UBO) must deposit an amount of €200,000 in an account held by the company in a credit institution licensed by the Central Bank (payment institutions are not included). Alternatively, the company can submit evidence of an investment amounting to €200,000, for the purposes of operating its business in Cyprus (e.g. office purchase, office equipment purchase, or other).
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.