The government has recently announced certain changes to the popular permanent residency program which has attracted thousands of investors over the last few years or so. Regulation 6(2) allows a non-EU investor to apply for permanent residency in Cyprus assuming he/she meets certain criteria, the main requirement being an investment to buy a property in Cyprus worth at least €300,000.
The key changes to the program which came into effect on the 24th of March 2021 are the following:
- The program as it was before the amendments took place was relying on investments to buy a house or flat. The amendments to the program mean that an investor can now purchase shops, offices, hotels or other similar properties with a combined value of at least €300,000.
- The program as it previously was only allowed the purchase of newly constructed properties and resale properties would not qualify for the program. Under the new program, purchase of resale properties is acceptable.
- There is now an option for investment that does not relate to real estate. The amended program now allows an investment worth a minimum of €300,000 in the share capital of a company registered in Cyprus and which employs at least 5 people. The company should have a physical presence in Cyprus. Further, investments in units of a Cyprus Collective Investment Organization (type AIF, AIFLNP, RAIF) are also acceptable
- The requirement for all investors to have a 3 year fixed term deposit with a local bank has been removed.
These changes are welcome and are expected to render the program even more attractive to non-EU investors who wish to apply for permanent residency in Cyprus.