One of the main objectives of the economic policy of the Republic of Cyprus is to further encourage Foreign Direct Investment and to attract individuals that wish to settle and live in Cyprus. Key factors that make Cyprus an attractive destination for investment, is the highly specialized human capital, the reliable legislative and regulatory framework, the stable tax system and the safety and stability conditions prevailing in the country. Within this framework and taking into account the strong investor interest, the Government of Cyprus has established and revised the “Criteria for granting an Immigration Permit within the scope of the expedited procedure to applicants who are third country nationals and invest in Cyprus” with specific incentives, terms and conditions and control procedures in order to prevent abuse. On the basis of the Programme, a non-Cypriot citizen, who meets specific economic criteria may apply for the acquisition of the Cyprus Permanent Residency.
Key Provisions of the new amended Fast Track 6.2 Permanent Residence
- Total investment can be as low as €300,000 plus VAT
- Numerous types of investments are now available as described below :
(A) Investment in a house/apartment: Purchase of a house or apartment from a development company, which should concern a first sale of at least €300,000 (plus VAT).
(B) Investment in real estate (excluding houses/apartments): Purchase of other types of real estate such as offices, shops, hotels or related estate developments or a combination of these with a total value of €300,000. The purchase of interest can be the result of a resale.
(C) Investment in Cyprus Company’s share capital, with business activities and personnel in the Republic: Investment worth €300,000 in the share capital of a company registered in the Republic of Cyprus, based and operating in the Republic of Cyprus and having a proven physical presence in Cyprus and employing at least five (5) people.
(D) Investment in units of Cyprus Investment Organization of Collective Investments (forms of AIF, AIFLNP, RAIF): Investment worth €300,000 in units of Cyprus Investment Organization Collective Investments.
- The Applicant must show income from abroad of at least €30,000. This income should be increased by €5,000 per dependant ( spouse and children) and by €8,000 for each parent / parent in law. In cases where the applicant chooses to invest as per Investment criterion B, C or D his /her total income or part of it may also come from sources coming from activities within the Republic annually.
- The applicant and his/her spouse shall confirm that they do not intend to undertake any sort of employment in the Republic with the exception of their employment as Directors in a Company in which they have chosen to invest under the criteria
- In cases where the investment does not concern the company’s share capital, the applicant and/or his/her spouse are allowed to be shareholders in companies registered in Cyprus and the income from the dividends derived from such companies may not be considered as an obstacle for the purposes of obtaining the Immigration Permit. In such companies, they may also hold the position of an unpaid Director.
- Where the applicant chooses to invest based on Investment Criterion B,C or D he/she should provide evidence regarding his/her accommodation in the Republic (e.g. title of ownership or contract of sale and proof of payment for the property or rental agreement).
- Funds related to the investment must be proven to come from abroad
- Any alienation of the holder of the Immigration Permit from the investment he/she has made without its immediate replacement with another of the same or greater value which must meet the conditions set out in the current regulations ,will result to the cancellation of the Immigration Permit based on the provisions of Regulation 6 of the Aliens and Immigration Regulations.
Key Benefits of obtaining the Permanent Residency in Cyprus
- Fast Track Procedure – minimum 2 months for approval
- Residency for the whole family – the investor, investor’s spouse, investor’s minor and adult children as well as the investor’s parents and parents in law can obtain the permanent residence with no additional investment being made
- The PR permit of the adult children is valid even after they have exceeded the age of 25 years old and even if they do not remain students and/or financially dependants on their parents
- The residence Permit obtained is PERMANENT and lasts for a lifetime
- A PR holder can apply to obtain Cypriot Citizenship via naturalization based on the years of residence after spending 5 years of legal residence in the Republic within an 8 year period
- A PR holder can upgrade his/her PR permit to a long – term residency status which will enable him/her to enjoy similar rights to EU citizens including the ability to legally work in Cyprus. This long term residency status is permanent and available to all non EU nationals that have resided in Cyprus for over 5 years. The long term residency status is granted to applicants that have not been absent from the Republic for more than six consecutive months and more than 10 cumulative months within the 5 year period
- No Inheritance Tax
- No immovable property tax will be paid by property owners as from January 2017
- PR holder’s children can attend either a public Greek school for free or attend one of the many private English schools and Universities in the Republic which allow entry into EU and USA Universities.