March 2019: Key Changes to the Cyprus Passport Programme
With 1,864 citizenship-by-investment applications being approved since 2013, Cyprus has attracted EUR €6.6 billion to its real estate sector due to the Cyprus investment scheme. However as a result of mounting pressure from several EU bodies, Cyprus Government have decided to implement changes to the scheme that will be implemented on the 15th of May 2019. They are designed to increase transparency, whilst also supporting the Cypriot economy.
The following criteria will be mandatory to all potential investors applying for the Cyprus citizenship-by-investment scheme from May 15th:
- All applicants must be in possession of a Schengen visa.
- Applicants who were rejected by other schemes from EU member states will be excluded to avoid cherry-picking of the easiest schemes.
- The investment period will be increased from 3 to 5 years. (applicants will be able to change their investment, provided that consent is granted from the Ministry of Finance).
- If a residential property has already been purchased under the old regulations, the required investment is increased from EUR €2m to EUR €2.5m. Newly built properties investment will continue to be EUR €2 million.
- Investment into government bonds will no longer be an accepted form of contribution to the scheme.
- Shipping will be included in contribution to the investment sectors.
- A planning permit will be required for all properties purchased for the scheme that are undergoing construction.
- A compulsory government donation of EUR €150,000 will be required by all applicants.
- Further due diligence and background checks shall be carried out by specialist foreign firms on each applicant.
The above changes, increased timings for investment period, and compulsory donation, are three months away. If you or your clients are considering this scheme, do so before May 15th.
Eltoma Property have assisted many applicants by quickly and efficiently guiding them through every step of the process. Transparent, but efficient and confidential, our focus is always on our client’s best interests.
We have created a tailor-made Cyprus citizenship package to ensure your EU passport application is successful, and the related investment is tax efficient and profitable.
Contact us for more information.