The Cyprus second passport programme is one of the most expensive, but it can be acquired in a shorter time than some of its competitors. The benefits of holding a Cyprus second passport include EU citizenship, the right to live, work, and travel throughout the EU, and other freedoms that come with being an EU and Cypriot citizen.
The Cypriot government first started offering citizenship by investment back in 2013. In May 2019, the terms of the programme were revised and new rules were implemented to make the programme more exclusive. The investments that have come into the Cypriot economy as a result of the second passport programme have been notable. The economy has recovered, real estate and other industries are booming, and Cypriots enjoy a higher standard of living.
Cyprus is an island that sits between Africa, the Middle East and Europe. A member of the European Union, it is home to 1.17 million people. Cypriots are generally bilingual and speak Greek and English.
It is also home to a large population of highly-skilled individuals working in finance, fintech, tourism, and real estate. For several years, Cyprus has been a global hub for forex brokers, offshore business, and fintech. This sector has continued to grow and is a huge draw for wealthy businessmen. Furthermore, the country’s strategic location and its laid-back island lifestyle have made it extremely popular with HNWI looking for a European base.
Benefits of a Cyprus Second Passport
The benefits of a Cyprus second passport are:
- Visa-free travel or visa on arrival travel to 174 countries
- Free movement throughout the EU, EEA and Schengen Area
- A quick processing time
- EU citizenship
- Commonwealth citizenship
- Right to live, travel, work, establish a business, or study in all EU Member States
- Possession of a strong passport
- Free education in Cyprus and in some EU countries
- Can be passed on via descent
- High level of social stability, education, healthcare, human rights, and access to social services
- Majority of investments can be retrieved after five years
- Low donations when compared to other EU jurisdictions
- A respected country
Requirements for Cyprus Citizenship
Anyone applying for Cypriot citizenship must invest EUR 2 million in real estate. This can be through the purchase of one, or several properties. The purchases can be made by the individual or a company of which the applicant is the main shareholder. Alternatively, the applicant can invest up to EUR 2 million in a company with at least 5 local employees. Investments can also be made into local investment funds.
The applicant can choose one, or a combination of all of these investment vehicles, as long as the total value is EUR 2 million. After a period of five years has elapsed, the value of the investment can be reduced to EUR 500,000. This must be held indefinitely.
Applicants are also required to submit their biometric data to the authorities. There are no medical requirements, language tests, or interviews like there are in some other jurisdictions.
Meeting due diligence requirements set by the Cyprus government is, of course, another requirement. A clean criminal record check must be produced and the Cypriot authorities will conduct their own research on each applicant to ensure they are of good standing. They will ascertain whether they have been denied entry to any EU country, are not under investigation or prosecution and are not associated with any company or legal entity that is restricted in the EU. They must also not be wanted by INTERPOL or EUROPOL.
The applicant or their co-applicants must not be a politically exposed person or have held public office in any country in the last five years.
Contributions for Cyprus Second Passports
As well as satisfying the above requirements, the applicant must make additional contributions as a part of the second passport process.
A donation will go to the Government’s Research and Development Fund for EUR 75,000. These funds will be matched by the EU and will aim to increase the country’s investment in R&D over the next few years. One of the main purposes of the fund is to encourage participation in Europe’s biggest research and innovation programme- Horizon 2020.
A donation of EUR 75,000. This donation will go to the Land Development Organisation. This fund will be used to create affordable housing, subsidise land, and to create social housing for Cypriot citizens.
Payment of government fees. Applicants must also pay government fees that are in the region of EUR 20,000. Other fees including professional service provider fees need to be taken into account, as do passport and ID card issuance costs.
How long it takes
The application process is quick as long as all documents are in order. To compile documents and make all investments takes around one month. It then takes a further six months to receive approval. You must then wait up to eight months for the passport to be issued. All in all, you can have your citizenship in just over one year.
Acquiring Cypriot citizenship includes a number of important steps that need to be taken with due care and consideration. The whole process usually takes eight months from start to finish.
- Before you start your application for Cyprus second passport, you need to engage a professional like Fast Offshore to help you.
- The second step of the process is to apply for Cypriot residency. This means you declare you live in Cyprus for six months, but you don’t need to be physically present. It does, however, mean you need to visit Cyprus to file the residency request.
- At this point, you must decide on the investment strategy you will take and how you will split your EUR 2 million of investments. You must ensure the investment sum of EUR 2 million is met and paid in full.
- It is then time to prepare the supporting documents and submit them with the application to the authorities. At this stage, you must pay all government fees.
- You must then wait to receive a formal acceptance of your application.
- Upon receiving approval, you must visit Cyprus for a second time. During this time you will take an Oath of Allegiance and submit your biometric data. After that has been done, your passport will be issued.
- You are then a fully-fledged Cypriot citizen.
Get in Touch!
Through our network of trusted partners, we can assist you in picking the perfect passport and then taking care of all the paperwork. We can also assist you with company incorporation, bank account opening, and other forms of corporate and financial advice, in this and many other jurisdictions.
Enjoy fast, experienced, efficient and professional ongoing support with Fast Offshore. Contact us today to take the first step towards freedom and new opportunities with a second passport.
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