This scheme sets out a fast track procedure for the acquisition of Cypriot citizenship by applicants, their spouses and dependent children of up to 28 years of age. The scheme gives the option to the parents of the applicant to also apply for citizenship provided they also acquire a privately owned permanent residence. A successful applicant will become a Cypriot national, with an EU passport. The fundamental freedoms of the EU will therefore apply including the free movement of people, capital, goods and services within the EU, Norway, Iceland, Lichtenstein and Switzerland. Travel visas are not necessary for more than 140 countries (including the EU). Dual citizenship is permitted in Cyprus, allowing for excellent international tax planning. There is no inheritance tax and property tax is low.
A non-Cypriot citizen with a clean criminal record, will be granted Cypriot Citizenship provided that he/she meets one of the investment requirements mentioned below and complies with the terms and conditions of the Scheme.
The investment(s) required for the purposes of this Scheme, can be made by a variety of methods. The applicant can make the necessary investments) either personally or jointly with a spouse, or through investment(s) made by a spouse.
The applicant may also make the investments) through a company or companies in which he/she owns shares. If the investment is made by a company in which the applicant is not the only person who owns shares, the percentage of the investment which will be considered as having been made by the applicant will be equal to the percentage of the shares he/she owns in the company.
Finally, where a company has made investment(s) in accordance with the investment requirements below, it is possible for a high-ranking senior manager of that company to apply for the Cypriot Citizenship, provided that he/she receives remuneration that generates tax revenues in the Republic of Cyprus of at least €100,000 over a 3-year period. This tax must have already been paid or prepaid.
The applicant should have made the necessary investment(s) during the three years before the date of their application and must retain the said investments for a period of at least three years from the date of their acquisition of Cypriot Citizenship.
It is important to note that the investment(s) can be sold by the applicant after the lapse of a 3-year period, from the date of acquisition of Cypriot Citizenship without their Citizenship being revoked.
The applicant should have made an investment in the Republic of Cyprus of at least €2,000,000 for the purchase or construction of buildings or for the construction of other land development projects such as residential or commercial developments. Investment in land under development is also included in this requirement, provided that an investment plan for the development of the purchased land is included in the application.
The applicant should have made a purchase or should have participated in companies or organisations established and operating in the Republic of Cyprus, with investment costs of at least €2,000,000. The funds invested by the applicant must be used by these companies or organisations exclusively in Cyprus, for their investment objectives. A specific investment plan by the companies or organisations must be prepared, indicating how the funds of the applicant will be invested. In addition, those companies or organisations must be able to prove they have a physical presence in Cyprus with significant economic activity and turnover. Further, these companies must employ at least five Cypriot citizens or other EU member citizens. The employees need to have legally and continuously resided in Cyprus during the five years preceding the application submission date.
The applicant must have bought units of at least €2,000,000 from Alternative Investment Funds (AIF) established in the Republic of Cyprus, licensed and supervised by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission. The said AIFs must make their investments exclusively in the Republic of Cyprus in areas that meet the requirements of this Scheme (i.e. land, companies) or in areas approved by the Minister of Finance.
The applicant can proceed with a combination of the above investments provided that the total amount of the investment will be at least €2,000,000. Under this criterion the applicant has the option to purchase up to €500,000 of government bonds which will be issued by the Ministry of Finance. Those bonds must be retained by the applicant for at least 3 years.
Additional Conditions and Requirements
Residence in the Republic of Cyprus: In addition to the above investment requirements, the applicant must also purchase a permanent, privately-owned residential property in the Republic of Cyprus with a value of at least €500,000 excl. VAT. If the purchase value of the residential property is in excess of €500,000, then part of that amount can be used to supplement the total amount of the investment made on the basis of the above criteria.
Parents of the applicant: The parents of the applicant may also apply for Citizenship, regardless of their age. The applicant’s parents who want to acquire Cypriot Citizenship must hold a permanent privately-owned residence in the Republic of Cyprus, the purchase price of which is at least €500,000 plus V.A.T. It is also possible for the applicant and his/her parents to collectively acquire a residence provided that its value is at least €1,000,000 plus V.A.T.
Residence Permit prior to the Citizenship: The applicant prior to his Citizenship, must have held a Residence Permit in Cyprus for a period of at least 6 months. If the applicant is not already a holder of such permit, then he/she (and the family members applying for Citizenship with the applicant) may apply for such permits on the basis of the Permanent Residency Scheme, simultaneously with his/her Citizenship application. The clean criminal record requirement from their country of residence and the requirement for a Residence Permit for at least 6 months before to the Citizenship, apply to all members of the family of the applicant (i.e. spouse, children, parents), who are applying for Cypriot Citizenship.