Cyprus Passport: Procedures and Pitfalls
Being an owner of an EU passport myself, I can truly appreciate the automatic freedom of movement this allows throughout the EU. This article has been drafted with the objective in mind to support others in achieving this goal and receiving the benefits detailed below. As you may be aware, many countries provide citizenship programmes. This article will focus attention on the Cyprus Citizenship by Naturalisation scheme.
A non Cypriot Investor can acquire a Cyprus Citizenship by Naturalisation by Exception on the basis of the legislation Subsection (2) of Section 111A of the Civil Registry Laws of 2002 -2015.
This legislation was thereafter revised by Council of Ministers, to introduce new criteria effective from 13th September 2016.
A non Cypriot citizen, TCN – (Third Country National – being the standard immigration term), who satisfies the following criteria, may apply for Cypriot Citizenship through naturalisation by exception:
- Can apply in person or via a company/companies, which he participates as a shareholder, in proportion to his shareholding percentage.
- Through investments, either individually or with their spouse/partner.
- A high ranking Senior Manager of a company(ies) may apply where he receives a remuneration package generated for the Republic of Cyprus and tax revenues of a minimum €100,000 over a three year period.
- The necessary investments must be completed, in the prior three years before the date of the application. These investments must be held for a minimum three years following the date of the naturalisation.
Investment Vehicles & Amounts involved
The level of investment required:
- €2mil Euro.
The individual is required to make an investment of minimum €2 million for the purchase or construction of immovable properties, for the construction of other land development projects (residential, commercial, or in tourism sector developments) including other infrastructure projects.
The Investor must within this level, purchase and maintain a primary resident property in Cyprus for €500,000EUR.
- €2.5 mil Euro
Cyprus Companies – purchase, establish or participate
There is a requirement to invest a minimum of €2 million in a Cyprus company(ies).
The invested funds shall fully support the investment goals of this company(ies) exclusively in Cyprus, founded on a specific investment plan.
This Cypriot company(ies) must have physical presence in Cyprus and prove operational within Cyprus. In addition, must employ a minimum of 5 either Cypriot or EU Citizens, who have been legitimately and consistently living in Cyprus during the previous 5 years, prior to the application submission date.
The other 500,000EUR must be utilised to the purchase of the main private residence.
- €2.5 mil Euro
- AIF Investments – Alternative Investment Funds
The Investor may invest a minimum of €2 million in AIF’s units. The AIF must be established in Cyprus and be licensed and supervised by CySEC – Cyprus Security and Exchange Commission.
The other 500,000EUR must be utilized to the purchase of the main private residence.
- Cypriot Companies Financial Assets investment
Similarly the Investor must invest a minimum of €2 million in the Cypriot company(ies) financial assets, as securities and bonds. These companies have the same criteria as above, i.e. must have a physical presence in Cyprus and significant economic activity within the Republic of Cyprus.
The other €500,000EUR must be utilised to the purchase of the main private residence.
- A Combination of the Investments
The investor can arrange for a combination of the above investments, on the condition that the total investment minimum equals €2 million. It should be noted that part of the investment combination can be placed in government bonds, totaling €500,000EUR being available for investment.
Again, the other €500,000EUR must be utilised to the purchase of the main private residence.
EU Cypriot Passport: Benefits
- EU passport holders are entitled to arrive, live, study and work in the European Union, also, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Switzerland and Norway.
- The Cyprus Citizenship programme has absolutely no residential requirement.
- Investors and their families can obtain full EU rights, including the ability to live and work in any EU country.
- Visa free travel in 168 countries.
- Dual citizenship is acceptable.
- No requirement to relinquish your current nationality
Processes & Procedures: Investors
- Complete the investment criteria per your individual circumstances, ensuring the funds are held within Cyprus prior to submission of your application for Cypriot Citizenship.
- Obtain an immigration permit, where not already held, by completion of The Aliens & Immigration Regulations – Application for Registration & the Acquisition of an Immigration Permit form.
- Complete the Application by an Alien for a Certificate of Naturalisation – M127.
- Complete the supporting checklist – Checklist of Investor’s Application Documents.
- Obtain both original and copies of the required documents to support your application.
- Make an appointment to submit your application accordingly with the Minister of the Interior.
It is always best to gain expert advice to oversee and support the entire process, which here at Eltoma Corporate Services, we can provide for you.
We have the knowledge, experience and resources to support the completion of the documentation and process as per your individual requirements, including the gathering of all required forms in the necessary format. You will be appointed your own Cyprus Citizenship officer, who will accompany you throughout the entire procedure.
In conclusion, to gain the available benefits highlighted in this article, do not hesitate to contact us for further guidance.