The Scheme for Naturalization of non-Cypriot investors by exception is based on subsection (2) of section 111A of the Civil Registry Laws of 2002-2015 (the “Scheme”). The investment options available are as follows:
- Investment in real estate, land development
This is the most popular of the criteria available under the Scheme is the investment in real estate. Under this criterion the applicant is required to make an investment of at least €2 million in real estate located in Cyprus with the purchase price of the family residential home being at least €500.000 plus VAT.
It is noted that investment in land under development is included in this criterion, provided that an investment plan for the development of the purchased land will be included in the application.
- Purchase or Establishment or Participation in Cypriot Companies or Business
The applicant is required to purchase shareholding in companies or organisations existing in Cyprus with an investment cost of at least €2 million. The funds must be used towards financing the investment objectives of these companies exclusively in Cyprus, based on a business plan. These companies must employ at least 5 Cypriots or citizens of other European Union member states.
- Investment in Alternative Investment Funds or financial assets of Cypriot companies or organisations that are licensed by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission
The applicant is required to buy units of at least €2 million from an alternative investment fund established in Cyprus and licensed by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission and whose investments are made exclusively in Cyprus, in investments that meet the criteria or are in areas approved by the Cyprus Ministry of Finance.
- Combination of Investments
The applicant is entitled to proceed with a combination of the above investment options, provided that the total investment amount will amount up to at least €2 million.
Within this option the applicant may purchase special government bonds of up to €500.000, provided these are not sold for a period of 3 years.
Under each of the above investment options, the applicant must own a residence in Cyprus, the purchase price of which must be at least €500.000 plus VAT.
The applicant must prior to his/her naturalization as a Cypriot citizen hold a permanent residence permit in Cyprus. If the applicant does not already hold a Permanent Residence Permit he/she may apply for a Permanent Residency Permit simultaneously with the application for citizenship so as not to delay the process.
The Cyprus government has decided to permit the submission of the spouse of the applicant simultaneously with the applicant’s application for citizenship, meaning that both spouses are able to acquire citizenship together.
Other criteria in support of the application:
- A certificate of clean criminal record from country of residence duly translated and certified. This requirement is also applicable to the applicant’s spouse;
- A marriage certificate, duly certified (official and certified translation);
- The birth certificates of the applicant’s children, duly certified (official and certified translation);
- A true copy of a valid passport for the applicant and his/her spouse;
- Curriculum vitae of the applicant and his/her spouse;
- Copy of the Permanent Residence Permit (if available);
- Two passport size photos of each of the applicant and his/her spouse.
Cypriot citizenship can be obtained by the children (under the age of eighteen) of an applicant once the main applicant parent has acquired Cypriot citizenship and provided that both parents consent to the child obtaining Cypriot citizenship.
Cypriot citizenship can be obtained by the financially dependent adult children of the applicant once the main applicant parent has acquired Cypriot citizenship if such adult children fit into either of the following categories: (a) students up to the age of twenty eight that are attending a university aiming to obtain a diploma, undergraduate degree or master’s degree; or (b) children with severe physical or mental disability that renders them unable to work.
It is now possible for the parents of the applicant to apply for Cypriot citizenship after the main applicant has first acquired Cypriot citizenship. In order for the applicant’s parents to apply for citizenship they must own a residence in Cyprus, the purchase price of which must be at least €500.000 plus VAT. It is noted that the main applicant and his/her parents may collectively acquire a residence in Cyprus, provided that the total purchase price is at least €1 million plus VAT.
The approximate timing for applicants that are not already the holders of a Permanent Residency Permit is 6 months from the submission of the application and supporting document.