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Recent amendments introduced to the Permanent Residency Program in Cyprus, make the program more flexible and certainty more attractive for potential investors and their families.

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Amendments to the Cyprus Residency Program- A Revised Scheme

Although the requirement of the Residency Program of the minimum investment amount of €300,000 remains in place, the investment criteria have been expanded thereby permitting the potential investor to invest in other areas of the economy. More specifically an investor /applicant may invest in one of the following

I. Investment in a dwelling home
Purchase of a dwelling home must be by a Land Development company, which should relate to a first sale the minimum value of which must be at least €300,000 (plus VAT).

II. Investment in Real Estate (other than a dwelling home)
Investment in commercial real estate with a minimum value of EUR 300,000.

III. Investment in the share capital of fully-fledged Cyprus registered companies
A minimum investment of €300,000 can be made in the share capital of a company registered in the Republic of Cyprus, which is a fully fledged of Cyprus and which employs a minimum of five personnel. It is to be noted that the applicant may be a director of such a company, provided that he/she does not receive an annual salary from their office as directors.

IV. (D) Investment in units of a Cyprus Collective Investment Organization (type AIF, AIFLNP, RAIF):
An investment in the value of €300,000 in units of a Cyprus Collective Investment Scheme.

I. Proof of Residence in Cyprus
Where the applicant has elected to invest in commercial real estate or shares in Cyprus registered companies or in units in collective investment scheme, the applicant, may, by way of confirmation of residence in Cyprus, present a contract of sale or a rental agreement of a dwelling home.

II. No obligation for a Fixed Deposit
The requirement of the applicant maintaining a fix deposit of €30.000 for three years has been abolished.

III. Declaration of ‘No intention to work in the Republic of Cyprus
It has been a requirement of the Programme that when applying under Regulation category 6(2), the Applicant and his/her spouse had to sign a declaration that they did not intend to work in the Republic.
Although this continues to be the case, it is to be noted that under the amended regulations, the declaration is not required in the cases where the applicant chooses to be a director of the company in which he/she has invested.

IV. Ability to hold shares in Cyprus companies
The Applicant and/or the Applicant’s spouse may hold shares in Cyprus companies (other than a company in which the main investment has been made). The income (by way of dividends) derived from such shareholding shall not prevent the approval of the applicant’s Permanent Residency application.

V. Provisions relating to Investment in Real Estate
The purchase of commercial real estate can be made by a legal entity in which the Applicant and/or his spouse are the sole shareholders or UBOs, and which entity is legally established in the Republic of Cyprus or in another Member State of the European Union or the European Economic Area.

It is to be noted however that, where the applicant has purchased a dwelling home as part of his/her Permanent Residency application, the requirement that the amount of at least €200.000 plus VAT has been paid prior to submitting the application for Permanent Residency, remains in place. It is also to be noted that the requirement that such finds emanate from overseas funds, remains in place.

VI. Higher Value Investment is permitted so at to include the Adult Children of the applicant
It is now possible for the main Applicant to make an investment of a higher value in order for his adult children to become eligible for Permanent Residency even though they may not be financially dependent on the main Applicant.
The market value of the investment of €300,000 needs to be multiplied according to the number of adult children, which will rely on such investment for the purpose of obtaining permanent residency. The investment may be made in the joint names of applicant and his /her adult children.

In the event that the investment relates to Real Estate, proof of payment of at least 66% of the purchase price of the properties should be submitted together with the application.

It must be noted that, in such cases, each adult child must be able to prove a secure annual income of at least €30,000, which will be increased by €5,000 for each dependent person.

It continues to be the case that, in addition to making the investment, the Applicant should be able to demonstrate that he has at his disposal a secure income of at least €30,000 per annum with an increase by €5,000 for each dependent family member and €8,000 for each dependent parent of the Applicant or his/her spouse.

Where the applicant invests in a dwelling home, the applicant must demonstrate that his/her income emanates from external funds.

It is to be noted that were the applicant’s investments is in the additional permitted investments, the Applicant’s source of income may be derived from sources from activities within the Republic.

As per the previous provisions of the Permanent Residency Program, the spouse and the minor children of the applicant (up to the age of eighteen years) are eligible to obtain permanent residency.
Permanent Permit can be granted to the unmarried children of the Applicant between the ages of 18 and 25, provided that, at the date of the application, they are attending higher educational institutions abroad and are financially dependent on the Applicant.

It is noted, however, that, if the children of the Applicant between the ages of 18-25 are enrolled as students in Higher Institutions of the Republic of Cyprus, they will have to apply for a Temporary Residence Permit in the Republic in their capacity as students under the relevant legislation (EU Directive). Following the completion of their studies, they will be entitled to apply for a Permanent Residence Permit, irrespective of their age with the only prerequisite that the main Applicant provides evidence of an additional annual income of €5,000 per annum.

It continues to be the case that the parents and parents-in-law of the main Applicant can apply on the basis of the main Applicant’s investment, with the prerequisite that the Applicant will present an additional annual income of €8,000 for each dependent parent or parent-in-law.

Clean Criminal Record
The applicant and all adult members of his/her family must provide a certificate of clean criminal record from their country of residency.

The application with all supporting documents will be filed with the Civil Registry and Migration Department and shall be forwarded for examination and approval to the Minister of Interior.
The estimated time of approval is approximately two months from the date of submission of the application.