On the 13th of February 2019, the Council of Minister of the Republic of Cyprus has decided to proceed with amendments in the criteria and other terms and conditions for acquiring a Cypriot passport under the Cyprus Investment Program.
The main changes on the CIP are the following:
- In case that the applicant has applied for the acquisition of citizenship in any other Member State of the European Union and has been rejected, he is not entitled to apply for Cypriot citizenship through the CIP.
- Investor must be a holder of Schengen visa to be entitled to apply for Cypriot passport.
- Investor has to make a mandatory contribution of €75,000 to the “Foundation of Research and Innovation”.
- Investor has to make a mandatory contribution of €75,000 to the “Cyprus Land Development Corporation”.
- The investments must be maintained for a period of at least five (5) years following the naturalization, instead of three (3) years as it was required before.
- During the above-mentioned period, the investor can change his/her investment upon the approval of the Ministry of Finance.
- In case where the residential property is bought from an investor who had previously used the property to apply for Cypriot passport though CIP, the investment amount shall be €2,500,000 instead of €2,000,000.
- In addition to this, for investments in property, a planning permit, a certificate of completion of the property as well as a bank waiver - in case that there is a mortgage on the property - are required.
- Investment in shipping and investments in Registered Alternative Investment Funds are added to investment sectors whereas investment in government bonds is excluded from investment sectors.
- A specialized foreign firm will be hired to undertake due diligence and background checks of the applicants.