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Overview - Cyprus: Open Business

By Leo Zhang. The Republic of Cyprus is an island country in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea, east of Greece, south of Turkey, west of Syria and Lebanon, northwest of Israel and north of Egypt. Cyprus is the third largest island in the Mediterranean Sea. It is also the third most populous island in the region and one of the area's most popular tourist destinations. Cyprus' strategic location at the crossroads of Europe, Asia and Africa has helped shape its history throughout the centuries, making it not only a major eastern Mediterranean trading hub, but a reputable international business and financial...

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New action plan for foreign investments

  Find out how Asia Outbound can introduce you to new intermediaries for your project or services.           By GUEST COLUMNIST    The government has announced its new action plan for attracting foreign businesses to establish or expand their activities in Cyprus.   The announcement came a year after the abolition of the previous investment program in the wake of adverse publicity that put Cyprus in the spotlight for the way it granted citizenship.   The new strategy, to be implemented from January 1, 2022, aims to attract foreign businesses and stimulate economic activity by promoting foreign investment.  ...

European Commission Steps Up Infringement Procedures Against Malta, Cyprus' ‘Golden Visa’ Schemes

The European Commission has taken further steps in its infringement procedure against Malta’s ‘golden passports’ scheme, warning the country that Malta is failing to fulfil its obligations towards the EU treaties with its citizenship programme.   Last year, Malta phased out the controversial IIP scheme and replaced it with a new scheme that the government says focuses more on residency and can lead to citizenship.   But the European Commission had launched infringement proceedings and asked Malta to provide a detailed explanation.   The government had replied to the EC last year, telling it that Malta would not cede on...

Permanent Residency in Cyprus

By Evis Hadjipetrou   Your “insurance policy” for the future   The Cyprus PR program offers non-EU nationals guaranteed permanent residency within 2 months with a single, secure, real estate investment of €300,000. It applies to the investor, their spouse dependent children up to age 25, and the parents of the applicant and spouse.    Permanent residency status means that your family has the right to live freely in Cyprus or continue to live in your home country and just use the permit whenever you need it.      Permit holders also have the right to own a business in...

Cyprus Abolishes Citizenship Through Investment Program

By Al Jazeera Investigative Unit   Cyprus has announced it will abolish a controversial passport scheme following an investigation by Al Jazeera that revealed how high-ranking politicians were willing to issue passports to convicted criminals.   The interior and finance ministries said in a statement posted in Greek on Twitter that the citizenship through investment program in its current form will be abolished from November 1.   “The proposal was based on the long-standing weaknesses but also on the abusive exploitation of the provisions of the program,” Tuesday’s statement said.   In addition, Cypriot Attorney-General George Savvidis said an investigation into possible criminal...

Wealthy Britons Turn to Cypriot Citizenship

The number of British entrepreneurs looking to “buy” citizenship from countries offering visa-free access to the European Union has risen sharply, investment migration firms say, as prospects of a post-Brexit trade deal between Britain and the bloc darken.   Investment immigration firm Astons said it had seen a 50% and 30% year-on-year increase in interest from clients seeking Cypriot or Greek citizenship respectively this quarter, less than four months before UK passport-holders are likely to lose their rights to freedom of movement across the EU.   Henley & Partners also reported a rise in requests for advice on investment migration applications to Malta,...

Cyprus Investment Program: Parliament adopted changes to the program

Changes to the Cyprus Investment Programme officially published in the Government Gazette on August 17-18.   The Cyprus Investment Programme, based on the subjection (2) in section 111A of the Civil Registry Laws of 2002 - 2019, was approved by the Cyprus Council of Ministers on the 13th of September, 2016 and subsequently amended in May 2018, February May, and August of 2019 and August 2020. The latest amendments to the CIP are effective from 18 August and reflected in this memo for your ease of reference.   The amendments include the following changes:   The amount of the donation...

China's Richest Woman Buys EU Citizenship with 'Golden Passport'

According to a batch of leaked documents obtained by Al Jazeera known as the Cyprus Papers, Yang is among more than 500 high-net-worth Chinese citizens who have acquired "golden passports" by each investing at least 2 million Euros (US$2.3 million). Since the tiny island country is a member of the EU, obtaining a Cypriot passport has become a backdoor to quickly enable wealthy individuals to gain EU citizenship.   The news agency has not provided the names of all the Chinese nationals on the list, but it did release eight key figures. Yang was at the top of the list, as...

The Emerging Investment Horizon

Ever-changing global markets provide a diverse range of investment opportunities, which makes it more challenging to keep up with or even to tap into alternative options. We at BAO look at markets from a different perspective with an aim to help broaden your investment horizon. According to the China Global Investment Tracker, the value of China’s overseas investment and construction industries combined since 2005 amounted to over $2 trillion. The rapid development of China’s foreign investment is an inevitable result of the robust economic development, international financial management and focussed strategies of China’s wealthy family groups. China is opening up...