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Overview - Executive Summary


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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Cyprus Golden Passport Case Faces Trial Suspension and Refiling

The trial surrounding Cyprus's Golden Passport scandal, originally exposed in an investigation by Al Jazeera, has been suspended by the Nicosia criminal court due to changes in the court's composition. This development has resulted in the acquittal of all four defendants, including former House President Demetris Syllouris, former Akel MP Christakis Giovani, lawyer Andreas Pittajis, and Giovani Group executive Antonis Antoniou, on all charges, at least for the time being. Elli Papagapiou, the representative of the prosecution, explained that the current case could not proceed due to the change in the court's composition. As a result, the criminal case will...

Changes Implemented to Cyprus' Residency by Investment Program

The Residency by Investment program in Cyprus has undergone significant amendments as approved by the government. These changes aim to tighten the application process and establish stricter requirements for prospective investors. Among the key modifications are the introduction of a higher minimum annual income threshold, an increased amount for sponsoring dependents, and the implementation of annual income verification for individuals holding residency status. Additionally, adjustments have been made to the eligibility criteria for family members, excluding parents and adult children from obtaining residency under the main applicant's application.   Under the revised program, applicants seeking residency by investment in Cyprus...

Revocation of 'Golden Passports' for Three Investors by Cabinet

Three investors had their Cypriot citizenships revoked. Additionally, the passports of the individuals' wives and children were also taken away, according to government spokesperson Konstantinos Letymbiotis. This action was taken following a thorough investigation conducted by the government.   In the same cabinet session, a bill for 2023 was approved. This bill pertains to the issuance of court orders aimed at safeguarding the collective interests of consumers. Its purpose is to modernize the existing institutional framework that protects consumers' collective interests.   With the new legislation, courts are granted the authority to intervene and halt any behaviors that violate consumer...

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,...