On August 18th, 2020 an amended set of regulations governing the Cyprus Investment Programme (CIP) became effective following their publication in the Government Gazette. As a CIP accredited service provider, we outline below the major changes.

1. Changes in contribution

The amount of required contribution (one-time non-refundable payment) increases from €150.000 to €200.000

The following amounts are obligatory under the CIP to be contributed following application approval:

(a) €100,000 to the Cyprus Land Development Corporation; and
(b) €100,000 to the Research & Innovation Foundation OR the Service of Industry & Technology OR to the Renewable Energy Sources & Energy Conservation Fund OR to the National Solidarity Fund.

With the exemption of contribution to the Cyprus Land Development referred to in (a) above which cannot be waived, the requirement to contribute €100,000 to any of the above organizations/foundations/funds, may be waived if certain requirements are met.

2. PEPs eligible to apply under specific conditions

Under the revised scheme, politically exposed persons (PEPs) are eligible to apply for the CIP, provided they do not hold or did not hold an office in the 12 months prior to the submission of the citizenship application.

3. Citizenship for financially dependent adults

Under the revised scheme, the financially dependent children of the couple (the main applicant & his/her spouse) or the children of either of them, can apply for citizenship under their parents’ application if they are:
(a) between the ages 18 - 28;
(b) unmarried; and
(c) students working towards either a first university degree or a first master’s degree.

4. Citizenship for the parents of applicant’s spouse

Under the revised scheme, both the parents of the main applicant and the parents of the main applicant’s spouse may apply for citizenship.

5. Adult family members’ application

Parents and qualifying descendants may apply after the main applicant acquires citizenship or simultaneously (significantly reducing the overall application time).

Application for these family members must be supported by an additional investment of €500,000 in residential property.

6. Real estate development company proscription

It is no longer permissible for the main applicant to conduct his/her investment through the establishment of a Cyprus real estate development company.

7. Employee requirements (in case applicant invests in a Cyprus company)

In the case where the applicant invests in acquisition, establishment or participation in a Cyprus company, the company must employ a minimum of 9 EU citizens.

8. Funding the CIP investment

All funds for effecting the investment must be transferred from the main applicant’s bank account, or a bank account of his/her company maintained abroad, directly to Cyprus banks.

9. Police (clean criminal record) certificate issuance

The validity term of the police certificate for the submission of the citizenship application purposes has increased. The certificate may now be issued up to 6 months before the date of application.

10. Provisions added in relation to not-eligible persons

The list of investors not eligible to apply for Citizenship has been elaborated to include, among others, persons convicted (or under criminal investigation) of a serious crime, punishable by imprisonment of five years or more in the Republic of Cyprus, or another offense of similar severity.