Bariono Wealth Advisors Ltd
Investor Immigration - Cyprus Investment Programme
In its continuing efforts to attract high net worth individuals to settle and do business in Cyprus the Council of Ministers has established the Cyprus Investment Programme. One of the main objectives of the economic policy of the Republic of Cyprus is to further encourage foreign direct investment and to attract high net worth individuals to settle and conduct their business 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.
Conveniently situated at the crossroads of three continents, Cyprus enjoys the benefits of full EU membership, while providing an accessible gateway to Europe, Asia and Africa. The island boasts pristine beaches and an excellent climate, combined with a modern, professional and fast-paced business environment.
Main advantages of being a Cypriot Citizen:
- Convenient geographical location
- The lowest crime rate in Europe
- Favourable tax regime, including several favourable international double tax treaties
- High quality health care and education system
- Low cost of living
- Stable economy in a western-type presidential democracy
- Economic growth potential in Oil & Gas industry
- No inheritance tax
- Legal system based on English common law
- English language is widely spoken and the accepted language for business
In addition, Cyprus Citizenship provides the benefits of full EU membership, offering visa-free rights of movement and residence in more than 150 countries.
Investors (and their families) can move, reside, study and do business in any of the EU member states as well as in Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Iceland.
Spouses of the investors may submit their applications and acquire the Cyprus Citizenship at the same time as their partners. The investors’ dependent children (minors up to the age of 17) may apply for citizenship after the investor acquires the Cyprus Citizenship.
Important information about the program:
The minimum amount of investment is €2.000.000. The applicant will also need to acquire a residential property of at least €500.000 + VAT, which must be held for life. The €2.000.000 investment can be disposed of 5 years after the citizenship was granted. The applicant’s parents are also entitled to apply for the Cyprus citizenship-by-investment, provided that they own a lifetime residence of at least €500,000 + VAT. The investor and their parents may acquire one residential property of a total value of €1.000.000 + VAT, which will be allocated equivalently.
There is a mandatory donation of € 75,000 to the Foundation for Research and Innovation to promote entrepreneurship in Cyprus. An obligation that can be waived under certain conditions, i.e. where the investor shall invest in an innovative business (which has acquired a relevant certificate by the ministry of finance) or in a certified social company. The mandatory donation is also waived where the applicant has made an investment under the criterion “Purchase or Establishment or Participation in Cypriot Companies or Businesses” amounting to at least 20% of the investment cost of the prerequisite amount (ie € 400,000 ) to a company operating in the primary sector of the economy or in the secondary sector of the economy, or in one of the fields of research and technology, education, health.
There is another mandatory donation of € 75,000 to the Cyprus Land Development Corporation, aiming at the contribution to the integrated housing policy, specifically for the purpose of implementing affordable housing projects and the implementation of other housing plans / measures.
Where the investment relates to the purchase of real estate or property as well as in the case of a permanent homeowner, a planning permission, a completion certificate and a bank waiver will be required.
The applicant must have a Schengen visa in order to be able to apply for naturalization.
An applicant who has applied for the acquisition of citizenship in any other Member State of the European Union and has been rejected will not be entitled to acquire Cypriot citizenship within the framework of the Cyprus Investment Program.
The applications are usually processed within six months from the submission date.
Below are the types of investment within the scope of the Cyprus Citizenship-by-Investment program which the applicant can choose from:
- Investment in real estate, land development and infrastructure projects: The applicant should make an investment of at least €2.000.000 for the purchase or construction of immovable property or other infrastructure projects. The applicant has freedom of choice whether to invest in residential or commercial property, or property related to the tourism sector.
- Investment in financial assets of Cypriot companies or Cypriot organizations: The applicant should make an investment worth €2.000.000 through the purchase, incorporation or participation in a Cypriot company. The company should have a proven physical presence in Cyprus with significant activity and turnover. At least five Cypriot or European citizens should be employed by the company.
- Investment in Alternative Investment Funds or financial assets of Cypriot companies or Cypriot organizations that are licensed by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission: The applicant should make a purchase of units worth at least €2.000.000 from alternative investment funds (AIF) that are licensed and supervised by CySec (Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission). The investments must meet the criteria of the scheme or in areas approved by the Minister of Finance. Applicants may purchase financial assets of Cypriot companies in the form of bonds, bills and securities, although the Cypriot company or organisation needs to have a physical presence and substantial economic activity in Cyprus. It should be noted that the purchase by an AIF of units in another AIF is excluded.
- Investments in the shipping sector is also eligible, on the basis of specific measurable criteria.
- A combination of the above: The applicant is not restricted to one type of investment, provided that the total investment amount is €2.000.000.
We undertake the whole process on behalf of our clients and keep them informed and updated throughout the entire process, which is as below:
- Selecting the investment: Our expert team will undertake the task of carrying out research in the real estate market to give you the best possible advice on the available options for your investment.
- Preparing the application: The client will receive an application package explaining in detail what is required for either application. The most time-consuming documents will be requested ahead of time to give the client time to prepare in advance.
- Obtain pre-approval
- Submit the application: When an application is submitted to the Ministry of Interior, it is forwarded to the Ministry of Finance where the financial criteria are examined. Once the Ministry of Finance approves it, the applicant must proceed to make the investment. The application will then return to the Ministry of Interior and then to the Council of Ministers.
- Issuing the Citizenship Certificate: A certificate will be issued after the Council ratifies the citizenship. The client will need to take an oath at the Cyprus court and then the Citizenship Certificate will be stamped. Subsequently, we will apply for a biometric passport, which is obtained in a matter of days, at which point the client becomes a Cyprus and EU citizen.
Please contact us to find out more about the Cyprus Investment Programme and to receive guidance which is applicable to your specific needs.