Reduction in Cyprus Investment for Citizenship

September 20th, 2016   •   Comments Off on Reduction in Cyprus Investment for Citizenship   

The Cyprus Cabinet has approved amendments to its already popular citizenship by investment (CBI) program, making it more attractive than ever.

Importantly, the key advantages of the program, including speed of processing, no residency requirement, three year exit window, and inclusion of dependents up to age 28 have been retained. The Cyprus citizenship by investment program was introduced in March 2014, and has proven very successful, injecting over €2billion into the economy. The changes not only improve the competitiveness of the program but according to Minister of Finance, Harris Georgiades, ensure its longevity as well.

The most significant change is the reduction of the required investment to €2M, from €2.5M. This remains a pure investment, there is no donation element. Another advantage is the inclusion of the main investors parents, provided that they acquire a permanent residence property with a value of €500,000. It is possible for this value to be pooled into the main investment, enabling a more premium property to be purchased.

The ‘collective scheme’ concept, which required the simultaneous deposition of five applications, has been abolished. All applications will now be submitted individually, thus there is no waiting time for the formation of a group. Real estate was always by far the preferred qualifying investment option, this trend is sure to continue following the abolishment of both the bank deposit and pure bond investment schemes.

In order establish further genuine ties between the country and investor, applicants will be required to obtain Cyprus Permanent Residency (PR) status. This PR application can be submitted simultaneously with the citizenship application. It has a processing time of just two months and thus does not impact the overall speed. The investment made to fulfil the citizenship criteria also fulfils the financial criteria of the residency program, so there will be no additional cost to the investor.