Cyprus is one of the most attractive destination for investment due to its strategic geographic location, successful economic reforms, highly specialized human capital, the reliable legislative and regulatory framework, the stable tax system, the safety and high standard of living. The government cancelled the Cyprus Investment Program – a citizenship by investment scheme in November 2020, but it still maintains a residency by investment scheme, which enables non-EU nationals to obtain a residence permit, or so-called ‘golden visa’ in Cyprus in exchange of investment. Regulation 6(2) of the Aliens and Immigration Law of Cyprus sets requirements and eligibility criteria for Cypriot ‘golden visas’, which are being offered to foreign investors since 2008.
RESIDENCY BY INVESTMENT
- Spouse, dependent children (under 25) and parents (in-laws) of the main applicant can also apply;
- Quick processing time of 2-3 months;
- The right to live in Cyprus and free travel throughout the Schengen Zone;
- Safe and profitable investment;
- Possibility of gaining regular rental income;
- Curtailed governmental bureaucracy;
- Favorable tax regime: no tax on worldwide dividends, interest, inheritance or income tax;
- Access to the world-class educational facilities;
- Access to the world-class healthcare system;
- Beautiful scenery and beaches and mild climate and high standards of living.
The recent amendments to the Regulation 6(2) were adopted in March 2021, which introduced new investment options and re-defined criteria for investors’ dependents, included in the application. The investment threshold was unaffected and still stands at EUR 300,000, excluding VAT.
Along with the investment in a residential realty, starting from March 2021, investment in commercial properties, such as offices, shops or hotels, can also qualify. Together with a main applicant, his/her spouse, unmarried children or in-laws under 25 and parents (in-laws) are also eligible to apply for residence permit. The whole application processing time varies from 2 to 3 months.
There are two other investment options available in the program: investment in the share capital of a Cypriot enterprise and investment in AIF, AIFLNP or RAIF funds.
The previous requirement of depositing money in Cyprus’ bank (at least EUR 30,000 for 3 years) was lifted. But the main applicant is required to prove an annual income of at least EUR 30,000, increased by EUR 5,000 for each family member (spouse and children) and by EUR 8.000 for each dependent parent or parent-in-law. All applicants must have a clean criminal record,
Investors have also to confirm that they do not intend to be employed in Cyprus, unless at the key position in the enterprise in which they decide to invest.
The program does not require physical presence, but applicants are required to visit the island for delivering biometrics and once every two years to maintain the residence status. Cypriot ‘golden visa’ holders can apply for Cyprus Citizenship or permanent residence status in 5 years, but they have to satisfy a certain residency requirement.
Bayat legal Services’ compliance team will conduct an internal due diligence.
Qualification assessment, KYC and background security check.
Study the application, sign the retainer agreement, prepare tailor made list of documents and application preparation.
Purchase the property, submission, file review, due diligence process.
Final decision, approval letter issuance.
Golden visa issuance.