Cyprus is one of the most beautiful countries in the world and Cyprus citizenship comes with a host of benefits. With a population of just over 1.7 million (in 2016), Cyprus offers fantastic quality of life and fulfilment as an individual. This is the reason people from all over the world want to get their Cyprus residency. To become a Cypriot national without any hassle, get in touch with one of the top law firms of the country and your job will be done.
Cyprus is one of those countries that offer both citizenship and residency. If you are confused, then you should know that in some of the countries of the world, you can either be a resident or a citizen – not so in Cyprus.
There are three immediate benefits when you become a resident of Cyprus. Once you become a citizen, your parents, spouse and children can also obtain citizenship without any trouble. As a Cypriot citizen, you can travel all through the European Union freely, work within the Union and reside in a place of your choice. You can also invest in property anywhere in the European Union and make other investments.
How to become a resident of Cyprus?
The Cypriot government has created an extremely favorable situation for someone to become a resident of the country. There are essentially three ways one can become a resident of Cyprus.
Perhaps the easiest way to obtain your Cyprus citizenship is through marriage. Any foreigner (both EU and non-EU citizen) who legally resides in the country and is married to a Cypriot can claim their citizenship after they have completed 3 years of marriage.
One can qualify as a citizen of Cyprus through naturalization if they qualify one of the two points mentioned below.
1. They have been a permanent Cypriot resident for 7 years consecutively
2. They have been a permanent Cypriot resident for 5 years consecutively and are a parent or a child of a Cypriot citizen
The government of Cyprus initiated a new immigrant investment program in 2014 where foreign investors and entrepreneurs can obtain Cypriot citizenship in return for their investment in the country. Called the Investment Citizenship Program, this is a fast-track program that involves less bureaucracy and provides citizenship in a much shorter period of time.
The Cyprus Council of Ministers approved the amendments to the Scheme for Naturalization in September 2016 to attract FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) by High Net Worth Individuals and in turn rewarded these investors with a second passport.
There are four criteria for foreign nationals to get Cyprus residency through the investment route.
1. By investing a minimum of €2 million for purchasing or constructing real estate, in residential, commercial land development-related projects or in infrastructure projects of building plots earmarked for future development.
2. By investing a minimum of €2 million in purchasing, creating or participating in companies or businesses based in Cyprus and operating out of the country. These companies or businesses should have a concrete presence in the country and must employ a minimum of five citizens of Cyprus.
3. By investing a minimum of €2 million in purchasing securities like bonds, AIFs and debentures and others that are registered and issued in Cyprus. These securities can also be registered or issued by companies that engage in substantial economic activities in the country and are regulated by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission.
4. One can also combine the eligible investments to reach the minimum total investment figure of €2 million. The combination can include investments of up to €500,000 in Cyprus Government bonds purchased from the primary market.
While the government of Cyprus has made the citizenship criteria for individuals absolutely favorable, it is always a good idea to apply for citizenship through a reputed law firm.
One may argue that in this age of the internet, there is no need for a third-party given the fact that getting the citizenship of Cyprus is so easy. But when you actually start the process, you get to feel that there are certain elements of residency that require more of your time and effort than you can afford to spend. Moreover, legal terms are often represented in different ways depending on a specific situation which a layperson may not understand properly.
There are local law firms in Cyprus that work on the area of Cypriot citizenship and they can help ease the process for you. For a very reasonable fee, they ensure that all legalities involved with your residency are taken care of.