Many firms and organizations choose Cyprus as their international hub as it offers access to European markets. Its strategic geographical location where 3 continents converge, its clear cut, easy entrance procedures for incorporating a company and its low business tax regime consist the main factors for foreign companies to seek relocating or establishing their headquarters in Cyprus. It is only the next natural step for the Republic of Cyprus to enact a special Investor Citizenship plan further strengthening its position as an international business hub.
Acquiring Cypriot Citizenship comes with a lot of perks as Cyprus is a member of European Union making the applicant part of the European Community with all the benefits of an EU Citizen. Living in Cyprus means provides a high standard of living with one of the lowest cost within the EU as it has low taxes, ease of movement, advance health care systems and free public education. Other benefits coming from the Cypriot culture and history is that it allows for a pace of life of your choosing, within a bilingual society speaking Greek and English with from people with a an eventful history and backgrounds from “all the walks of life” you get a special blend of speeds options, you can spend your mornings sitting in the office talking on the phone and sending emails, closing deals and communicating with clients and in the evening you can put the work on hold to enjoying a long walk on the shore or a coffee in a coffee shop down town. Sunny weather 360 days during the year and low crime rates are additional factors that contribute to the low stress life on the inland. More on the perks as an EU citizen you can freely travel within the EU borders as well as do business anywhere within the EU territory.
Cypriot Citizenship is inherited, meaning that you, your spouse and your children and their decedents will also acquire the citizenship. You are allowed to have double citizenship but do not receive double taxation, meaning in Cyprus you will only be taxed on the Cypriot products or services and income. Getting the citizenship is fairly easy, as long as you fill in the application criteria, as you do not need to pass any tests or language proficiency. There are several citizenship schemes in Cyprus but mandatory requirement for all applicants is to have a clean criminal record.
The investor scheme requires for applicants to invest at least €2,000,000 within Cyprus and to qualify must fulfill the conditions of clean criminal record, not be included in the list of persons who legislation requires the commitment of property within the limits of the European territory and to own a permanent residence in Cyprus.
In detail the conditions and requirements are:
- Invest €2,000,000, the amount can be invested in one or a combination of the below:
- property (houses, offices, shops, hotels etc but excluding underdeveloped land);
- businesses or companies that are based and are active in the Republic of Cyprus;
- companies registered in the Republic of Cyprus;
- financial assets (e.g. bonds/securities/ debentures registered and issued in the Republic of Cyprus;
- participation in a company/consortium of companies that has undertaken to carry out a public project;
- Own a permanent residence in Cyprus of a minimum value of €500,000. In relation with point 1.a. above, investments in residential properties can include a privately-owned permanent residence of a minimum value of €500,000.
- Pass the due diligence process. The process requires the applicant to provide a number of documents such as a notarized passport copy, a clean criminal record from the country of origin and evidence of source of funds used for the investments. Additionally the application will undergo controls and checks by the related authorities, to verify the AML status and sanction of the applicant
It should be noted that the amounts mentioned do not include VAT which depending on the investment selection it will increase the amount required.