As a part of its policies aiming to further encourage Foreign Direct Investment and to attract high net worth individuals to settle and do business in Cyprus the Council of Ministers established the “Cyprus Investment Programme“.
Below you may find information on the provisions of the “Cyprus Investment Programme” that will be put into effect from the 15th of May 2019 and onwards.
It is a requirement that the applicant must donate at least € 75.000 to the Research and Innovation Foundation AND at least € 75.000 to the Cyprus Land Development Corporation.
NOTE: Investors who have signed contracts for the purchase of immovable property and have paid the stamp duty until 15/05/2019 will not be obliged to make the above donations if their application for naturalisation is filed by the 15th of July 2019.
These amounts will be paid only after the application for acquiring Cyprus citizenship has been approved and before receiving the passport.
It is important to note that those who decide to invest in immovable projects or infrastructure are not required to pay the €75.000 to the Research and Innovation Foundation.
Furthermore, one of the following investments must be made:
- Investment in real estate, land development and infrastructure projects of at least €2 million – if the investment will be in the land, an investment plan for the development of the purchased land should be included in the application.
- Investment in financial assets of Cypriot companies or organisations of at least €2 million. These should be companies or organisations with a physical presence in Cyprus, with significant activity and turnover, and should employ at least 5 Cypriot or EU Citizens.
- 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 €2 million.
- Combination of the above criteria of a total investment of €2 million.
Privately Owned Residence
- An investor must also own a permanent privately-owned residence in Cyprus of at least €500.000 (plus VAT). If investment is made into residential properties, as per the first financial criterion, this requirement is not applicable, if at least one of the units is worth at least €500.000 (plus VAT), provided that the applicant retains the possession of the residence for life.
- An investor will need to supply the contract of purchase in relation to the residence and proof of payment of the agreed consideration.
- Members of the same family, who apply separately as investors, can collectively acquire a residence, provided that the total value of this property is €500,000 (plus VAT) for each applicant.
- In case that the value of the permanent privately-owned residence in Cyprus exceeds the amount of €500,000 (plus VAT), the additional amount may be used for supplementing the total amount of the investment made on the basis of the financial criteria above.
The following non-Cypriot natural persons who meet the set financial criteria are eligible to apply for the acquisition of Cypriot Citizenship:
- Natural persons, either personally or through a company in which they are participating as shareholders, in proportion to their holding percentage.
- Through investments made by their spouse or jointly with the spouse.
- As a high-ranking senior manager of a company (provided that they receive a remuneration that generates paid tax revenues of at least €100.000 over three years and that their tax has already been paid or prepaid).
Terms and Conditions
Further to the requirement of acquiring a privately-owned residence as described above, the following terms and conditions apply:
- Clean Criminal Record – the applicants and their family members that are eligible and will apply for the acquisition of citizenship, must hold a clean criminal record and their names should not be included in any sanction list. The applicants should also make a declaration as to any citizenship applications they have made in any other Member-States.
- Schengen Visa – the applicants and their family members that are eligible and will apply for the acquisition of citizenship, except European citizens, must hold a valid Schengen visa unless they do not require an entry visa for travelling in European Union Member-States,
- Residence in the Republic of Cyprus: Prior to their naturalisation, investors must hold a residence permit in Cyprus for at least 6 months. Nevertheless, the application for a residence permit can be submitted simultaneously with the application for naturalisation. If for any reason the application for naturalisation is rejected, the residence permit will be cancelled immediately.
Duration of Keeping Investments
The applicant should have made the necessary investments during the 3 years preceding the date of the application and must retain the said investments for a period of at least 5 years as from the date of the naturalization. The investment may be replaced during these 5 years, provided the Ministry of Finance consents to it.
The program applies to:
- The immediate family of the applicant (spouse or civil partner, minor children and adult financially dependent children). Adult financially depended children are:
- a) Full time higher education students up to the age of 28;
- b) Persons with severe physical or mental disability
- The investor’s parents may also apply for citizenship after the investor has acquired his/her citizenship. The investor’s parents will need to acquire a residence of at least € 500,000 (plus VAT), or otherwise the investor and his/her parents may collectively acquire one residential property of a total value of at least €1 million (plus VAT).
- The adult financially depended children of the investor as well as his/her parents can apply for citizenship after the investor is granted the Cypriot citizenship.
H.1 – DOCUMENTS
To proceed with an application under the Cyprus Investment Programme, it is important that the required documents are filed:
- Application Form M127 (Citizenship application) fully completed and signed before a Registrar of a Cypriot court or consular officer;
- Letter by the applicant or by the applicant’s representative, by which the investment and criterion under which the application is submitted, are briefly explained;
- Birth Certificate – (Translated in English, Certified by Public Notary & Apostilled);
- True Copy of passport;
- Certificate of Clean Criminal Record from the country of origin and the country of residence (if different) (Translated in English, Certified by Public Notary & Apostilled). Must be dated no later than 90 days from the date of its submission;
- Due diligence report (i.e. World Check, LexisNexis Diligence, Regulatory DataCorp Inc. etc.) Must be dated no later than 30 days from the date of its submission;
- Declaration concerning citizenship applications in other Member States (signed before a Registrar of a Cypriot court or consular officer);
- Copy of valid Schengen Visa (where necessary);
- Marriage Certificate / Civil Partnership Certificate (Translated in English, Certified by Public Notary & Apostilled)
- Copies of publications in a daily newspaper – two consecutive publications;
- Two passport size photographs;
- Curriculum Vitae (Brief – Prepared by Applicant);
- Copy of Residence Permit in the Republic of Cyprus;
Furthermore, in case the investor does not already hold a residence permit he/she will need to submit an application for acquiring an immigration permit, right after the submission of the naturalization application.
H.2 – PROCEDURE
STEP 1: We will arrange for a meeting at the Ministry of Interior for the submission of all required documents. Upon examination of the documents, the Ministry of Interior will provide to us on the same day the “Confirmation of Submission of Application for Naturalization by Exception” and the receipt of payment for submitting the application.
STEP 2. We will file at the Civil Registry and Migration Department application form MIP1 in order to obtain an immigration permit. Along with the application, we submit the “Confirmation of Submission of Application for Naturalization by Exception by the Ministry of Interior” certificate, along with the rest of the required documents.
STEP 3: Once the application from MIP1 is filed, the presence of the applicant and their spouse will be needed for at least five working days. This is because the Civil Registry and Migration Department will need to collect the applicant’s and his/her spouse’s biometric data (fingerprints and photograph) and signature. Within five working days, their immigration permits will be issued.
STEP 4. The Ministry of Interior examines the application for naturalisation. The expected time-frame for the examination is 6 months.
Governmental Fees payable upon applying for Naturalisation and prior to receiving the Cyprus Passports from the Immigration Department:
APPLICATION SUBMISSION FEES
CERTIFICATE INSURANCE FEE
INVESTOR (main applicant)
PARENTS OF THE MAIN APPLICANT
€2,000 (per person)