CYPRUS

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Cyprus : Citizenship by Investment


Citizenship by Investment in Cyprus
On the basis of a Council of Ministers' Decision dated 24th of May 2013 foreign investors can acquire citizenship of Cyprus by investment of 3,000,000 – 5,000,0000 EUR depending on the chosen investment option. In addition to the above-mentioned investment the applicant is expected to purchase residence in Cyprus the cost of which must exceed the amount of EUR 500,000 (+ 5 % VAT).
The currently applicable Council of Minister's decision of May 24, 2013, which is still in force, enables foreign nationals to gain citizenship if they meet certain criteria set out by the Ministry of Interior, under one of the following options:

1. National Investment and Donation

With this option an amount of EUR 2 million must be deposited with the Treasury of the Republic, as an investment in the National Investment Company. Additionally, EUR 500,000 needs to be donated to the Research and Technology Fund.

2. Direct Investments 
The applicant can also make a direct investment into the Republic of Cyprus amounting to at least €5 million including the purchase of real estate, businesses, shares or other financial assets.

3. Bank Deposits 
With the bank deposits option, the applicant should have personal deposits in Cypriot banks or deposits of privately owned companies or of a trust (in which he is a shareholder, settler or beneficiary) in the Republic of Cyprus amounting to a minimum of EUR 5 million. Such deposits must be held in a banking institution within the Republic of Cyprus for a period no less than three years.

4. Local Business Activities 
This option of obtaining citizenship is more complex. An applicant must establish a new company registered in the Republic of Cyprus in which they have full control. Following this, the company must have paid to the Government of Cyprus an amount of at least EUR 500,000 per annum for the three years preceding the citizenship application submission date.

Alternatively, if the headquarters of the company are located in Cyprus and no less than five Cypriot citizens find employment there, the annual government fee is reduced to EUR 350,000. If the business employs 10 Cypriot citizens or more, the amount decreases to EUR 250,000. In all of the above cases a three year period preceding the application must be met.

5. Combination (mixed option) 
The applicant can also choose to fulfill a combination of requirements stated in points 2, 3, and 4.

6. Impaired deposits with the Bank of Cyprus or Popular Bank after the 15th March 2013 
A further option is available for applicants who have incurred an impairment in deposits on one or both of the abovementioned Banks amounting to a total of at least EUR 3 million.
In all cases except the last option, the applicant must hold a privately-owned property in the Republic of Cyprus, the market value of which must be at least EUR 500,000 excluding V.A.T., and must have a clean criminal record.