The Council of Ministers of the Republic of Cyprus has just recently proposed changes to the current Cyprus Investment Programme (citizenship by investment program), which allows obtaining the citizenship of the country in a little more than six months.
The changes will take effect from the moment they are published in the official government newsletter, and the publication is expected soon.
The proposed changes:
- Investors will be required to make a donation of €75,000 to the “Cyprus Land Development Corporation” (effective from May 15, 2019)
- Investors will be required to make a donation of €75,000 to the “Research Promotion Foundation” (effective from May 15, 2019)
- Instead of the previous 3 years’ requirement, investors shall keep their investments for a period of at least 5 years
- For any investments in real estate a Planning Permit, a Certificate of Completion of the property (if finished) or a bank guarantee from the seller of the property to the buyer (for non-finished properties) should be provided (effective from May 15, 2019)
- Applicants should hold a valid Schengen visa
- If the residential property is purchased from someone who previously used this property to gain citizenship, the required investment amount is increased from €2m to €2.5m (effective from May 15, 2019)
- If the applicant has already applied for citizenship in another EU Member State, and the application was rejected, then the citizenship application in Cyprus would be automatically rejected
- The possibility to invest in government bonds is abolished
- The possibility to invest in shipping will be soon permitted.
The proposed changes, although they require a higher investment than before, clearly show that the Government of Cyprus wants the Programme to be more transparent and to conform to international standards.
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