1. Grant of the Cypriot Citizenship to Foreign Investors
The Government of Cyprus, in its efforts to enhance the competitiveness of Cyprus and provide even more investment opportunities to foreign investors, has revised the “Cyprus Investment Programme”.

A non-Cypriot citizen may apply for the acquisition of the Cypriot citizenship through naturalization by exception, if he fulfils the financial criterion A.1 and one of the financial criteria A.2-A.5, either personally or through a company/companies in which he participates as a shareholder – in proportion to his holding percentage, or through investments made by his spouse or jointly or even as a senior executive of a company/companies that fulfil the financial criterion A.1 and one of the financial criteria A.2-A.5.

A high-ranking senior manager may also apply, provided that he receives such a remuneration that generates for Cyprus tax revenues of at least €100.000 over a three-year period and provided that this tax has already been paid or is prepaid.

The applicant should have made the necessary investments during the three years preceding the date of the application and must retain the said investments for a period of at least five years as from the date of the naturalization. The investor may replace the investment during the said five-year period, provided that he has obtained beforehand an approval by the Cypriot Ministry of Finance.

A.New Financial Criteria
A.1 Donation to the Research and Innovation Foundation and the Cyprus Land Development Corporation 

The applicant should make a donation of at least €75.000 to the Research and Innovation Foundation. If the applicant donates an amount higher than the minimum of €75.000, this additional amount can be used for the purposes of supplementing the total amount of the investment made on the basis of the criteria A.2-A.5.

This obligation is lifted, if the applicant has invested at least €75.000 in a certified innovative enterprise (i.e. an enterprise that had acquired the relevant certificate by the Ministry of Finance) or a certified social enterprise.

In addition, the obligation is lifted, if the applicant has made an investment under the criterion A.3 (Purchase or Incorporation or Participation in Cypriot Companies or Businesses) of a total amount equal to the 20% of the required investment amount (i.e. €400.000) in a company whose operations fall within the primary sector of the economy, or the secondary sector of the economy (excluding construction projects), or in the sectors of research and development, education, health and renewable energy resources.

This obligation is lifted, if the applicant has invested at least €75.000 in a certified innovative enterprise (i.e. an enterprise that had acquired the relevant certificate by the Ministry of Finance) or a certified social enterprise.

In addition, the obligation is lifted, if the applicant has made an investment under the criterion A.3 (Purchase or Incorporation or Participation in Cypriot Companies or Businesses) of a total amount equal to the 20% of the required investment amount (i.e. €400.000) in a company whose operations fall within the primary sector of the economy, or the secondary sector of the economy (excluding construction projects), or in the sectors of research and development, education, health and renewable energy resources.

In addition the applicant should make a donation of at least €75.000 to the Cyprus Land Development Corporation for the financing of housing schemes for affordable housing, but also for the materialization of other housing schemes/measures. If the applicant donates an amount higher than the minimum of €75.000, this additional amount can be used for purposes of supplementing the total amount of the investment made on the basis of the criteria A.2-A.5.

A.2 Investment in Real Estate, Land Development and Infrastructure Projects
The applicant should make an investment of at least €2 million for the purchase or construction of buildings or for the construction of other land development projects, whether residential or commercial, and whether related to the tourism sector or to other infrastructure.

The investment in land under development is included in this criterion, provided that an investment plan for the development of the purchased land will be included in the application. However, investment in land that is situated in a building zone of zero development is excluded.

A.3 Purchase or Incorporation or Participation in Cypriot Companies or Businesses
The applicant should purchase, incorporate or participate in companies or organizations established and operating in Cyprus with investment costs of at least €2 million. The invested funds shall be channelled to finance the investment objectives of the companies exclusively in Cyprus, based on a specific investment plan. Moreover, investments in the shipping sector are eligible on the basis of measurable criteria that will be determined jointly by the Cypriot Ministry of Finance and the Shipping Deputy Ministry.

The companies or organizations must prove physical presence in Cyprus, with significant activity and turnover, and employ at least 5 Cypriot or European citizens. The minimum number of employees shall increase, if more than one applicant invests simultaneously or almost simultaneously in the same business or company.

Exclusively in Cyprus, based on a specific investment plan. Moreover, investments in the shipping sector are eligible on the basis of measurable criteria that will be determined jointly by the Cypriot Ministry of Finance and the Shipping Deputy Ministry.

The companies or organizations must prove physical presence in Cyprus, with significant activity and turnover, and employ at least 5 Cypriot or European citizens. The minimum number of employees shall increase, if more than one applicant invests simultaneously or almost simultaneously in the same business or company.

A.4 Investment in Alternative Investment Funds (“AIFs”) or Registered Alternative Investment Funds (“RAIFs”) or financial assets of Cypriot companies or Cypriot organizations that are licensed by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (“CySec”)

The applicant should invest in units of at least €2 million from AIFs or RAIFs established in Cyprus, licensed/registered and supervised by CySec. Such investments should be made exclusively in Cyprus, in investments that meet the criteria of this programme or in areas approved by the Cypriot Minister of Finance. It is permitted for these AIFs or RAIFs to invest in secondary market stock-market values of the Cyprus Stock Exchange an amount that does not exceed the €200.000.

In order to confirm that the investments that meet the criteria of the current programme will be retained for at least 5 years, the manager or the auditor of the Fund shall inform in writing and on an annual basis the Ministry of Finance with reference to the value of the initial investment.

The purchase of financial assets of Cypriot companies or organizations of at least €2 million, such as bonds, bills and securities, issued with the approval of the CySec, by companies that have proven physical presence and substantial economic activity in Cyprus and have as a purpose the financing of the investment plans of these companies or organizations exclusively in Cyprus, based on an investment plan, fall under this criterion.

The purchase by an AIF or RAIF of units of other AIFs or RAIFs is not considered eligible.

A.5 Combination of the aforementioned investments
The applicant may make a combination of the above investments, provided that the total investment will amount up to at least €2 million.

The applicant may make a combination of the above investments, provided that the total investment will amount up to at least €2 million.

The new criteria will apply starting from 15 of May 2019.

B. Terms and Conditions for Granting the Passport

B.1 Clean Criminal Record
The applicant must have a clean criminal record. Moreover, his name must not be included in the list of persons whose assets, within the boundaries of the EU, have been frozen as the result of sanctions.

In addition, an applicant, whose application for citizenship in any other EU member state had been rejected, is not eligible to apply for the acquisition of the Cypriot citizenship through the Cyprus Investment Programme.

B.2 Schengen Visa
The applicant must hold a valid Schengen visa. Third-Country nationals that do not require an entry visa for travelling in EU member states, as well as EU citizens are excluded from this obligation.

B.3 Residential Property in Cyprus
The applicant must possess a permanent privately-owned residence in Cyprus, the purchase price of which must be at least €500.000 plus VAT.

Members of the same family, who apply separately as investors, can collectively acquire a residence, provided that the total value of this home-property covers the amount of €500.000 per each applicant.

In case that the purchase value of the permanent privately owned residence in Cyprus exceeds the amount of €500.000, this additional amount can be used for purposes of supplementing the total amount of the investment made on the basis of the criteria of Part A above.

Furthermore, if the applicant has invested in housing unit/units on the basis of the aforementioned criterion

A.2, the purchase of another permanent residence in Cyprus will not be required, if at least one of these housing units is worth at least €500.000 plus VAT, provided that the applicant retains the possession of the residence for life.

However, if the applicant has invested in housing units that have already being used for the purpose of acquiring the Cypriot citizenship via the programme, the above provision will be in force provided that the total amount of the investments, including the privately-owned residence, is at least €2,5 million.

B.4 Residence Permit in Cyprus
The applicant, prior to his naturalization as a Cypriot citizen, must hold a residence permit in Cyprus for a period of at least 6 (six) months.

In case the applicant is not already a holder of a residence permit, he may apply for an immigration permit on the basis of Regulation 6(2) of the Aliens and Immigration Law, simultaneously with the application for naturalization.

C. Key highlights of the Cyprus Investment Programme
• Visa-free travel within the EU.
• Visa-free travel to over 159 countries worldwide.
• Wide choice of investment means the ability to invest directly in real estate or other assets of one’s choice or to combine allowable investments.
• Citizenship is granted to the spouse or partner of the investor, minor children and financially dependent adult children of the investor.
• The investor’s parents are also entitled to apply for citizenship, provided they own a permanent privately-owned residence in Cyprus, the purchase price of which must be at least €500.000 plus VAT. The investor and his parents, may collectively acquire a residence, provided that the total value of this home-property is at least €1.000.000 plus VAT.

2. How can we help you?
• Advise the investors on the required financial criteria and conditions to be met depending on their particular personal circumstances.
• Examine the chosen investment option of the applicant in order to establish the most effective and efficient way to meet the required financial criteria.
• Provide guidance and assistance on the application process and on the required steps to be followed.
• Find the right property matching the criteria of the applicant via our network of reputable licensed real estate agents.
• Drafting and assisting with the preparation and submission of the applications and all required documentation.
• Monitoring the status of the applications and continuous follow up.
• Regular update of the applicant on the progress of the application.