Cyprus is one of the few EU countries where, despite criticism from the European Commission, it is still possible to obtain citizenship in exchange for investment, bypassing the long naturalization procedure. True, participation in the relevant Investment Program will require significant investments and a willingness to pass a rigorous due diligence check.
In the European Union, the Cypriot citizenship by investment program is viewed sideways, fearing that due to insufficiently strict control, people who have not earned their fortune with impeccable honesty can get access to passports. However, an applicant for citizenship under this scheme undergoes a very rigorous due diligence check, and having a criminal record is an insurmountable barrier. If the applicant tried to obtain citizenship of any other EU country, but was refused there, he will not be allowed to participate in the program in Cyprus.
How long does it take to obtain Cypriot citizenship by investment?
The procedure for obtaining a passport through investment usually takes 6 to 8 months. For comparison: access to the citizenship of the same Cyprus through naturalization after obtaining an investment residence permit is stretched for seven years.
How much does it cost to get citizenship?
About 2.5 million euros.
Firstly, the amount includes investments in the amount of 2 million euros made directly within the framework of the government program.
The applicant has the following options:
- Purchase of real estate in the amount of at least 2 million euros. This may be residential property, commercial or building land. You can collect a portfolio of several objects for the specified amount. From May 15, 2019, for cases where the applicant buys a property that was previously used by another investor to obtain Cypriot citizenship under the program, the amount increases to 2.5 million euros.
- Invest at least 2 million euros in the purchase, creation or participation in enterprises that are actually located and operating in Cyprus. At the same time, such companies must be active and employ at least five Cypriots or citizens of other EU countries.
- Invest at least €2 million in alternative investment funds or financial assets of Cypriot entities licensed by the Securities and Exchange Commission. This option allows you to purchase financial assets of Cypriot companies and organizations in the form of bonds, securities and debt securities for a specified amount.
- Combine all the options listed above so that the total investment should be at least 2 million euros.
Secondly, the applicant will have to make two conditionally voluntary contributions – 75 thousand euros to the Cyprus Research Promotion Fund and the same amount to the Cyprus Land Development Corporation.
Thirdly, the main applicant must purchase and permanently own residential property, where his address will be registered, with a value of at least 500,000 euros (excluding VAT). However, if the applicant prefers to obtain Cypriot citizenship through the purchase of real estate, the cost of this object may be included in the 2 million euros that he must submit to participate in the program.
Investors are required to keep their investments for at least 5 years from the date of naturalization.
Is it possible, after obtaining the citizenship of Cyprus, to keep the passport of another country?
Cyprus recognizes dual citizenship.
Key benefits of the Investment Program
- Citizenship can be obtained not only by the applicant himself, but also by his entire family, including children under the age of 28 and his parents.
- Cypriot citizenship gives you access to all the basic rights of an EU citizen, including the ability to live, work and study in the EU – not only in Cyprus.
- Although Cyprus is not part of the Schengen area, thanks to intergovernmental agreements, the island nation’s passport provides visa-free entry to 173 countries around the world, including Canada, the UK, Hong Kong and Singapore.
- Transparency and speed of the procedure.
- There is no need to permanently reside in the country.
Our partners from PR Special Pro are ready to provide the necessary advice on residence permits and citizenship in different countries of the world, registration of foreign companies and opening bank accounts.