Does Cyprus have a Golden Visa Program?

The Cyprus Golden Visa Program is considered one of the quickest routes to permanent residency in Europe. The minimum investment requirement of €300,000 (about $330,000) is relatively accessible compared to other programs.

Accepted types of investments include the purchase of residential or commercial real estate, buying shares in a Cypriot company, or purchasing securities. The program allows flexibility in visiting Cyprus, requiring at least one visit every two years to maintain permanent residence​.

After undergoing changes over the years, the Golden Visa in Cyprus is still valid as of 2023, but it’s important to note that it now offers permanent residence by investment, not Cypriot citizenship.

The earlier citizenship by investment program, often referred to as the “golden passport programme”, was discontinued in November 2020. However, those who obtain the Golden Visa can apply for a Cyprus passport after residing in the country for five years as a Golden Visa holder.

In May 2023, the Cyprus government announced significant changes to the Golden Visa program. These changes, which came into effect on May 2, 2023, were aimed at tightening the program and reducing the risk of its exploitation. As part of these changes, foreign nationals must invest at least €300,000 plus VAT in Cyprus and demonstrate adequate income to qualify for residency under the Golden Visa program.

Currently, the Cyprus Golden Visa Program is active and accepting new applicants who meet the eligibility criteria and the qualifying investment amount.

To qualify for the Cyprus Golden Visa, applicants must meet several criteria:

Must be at least 18 years old.
Be a third-party national (non-EU/EFTA/EEA/Swiss).
Have a clean criminal record.
Have a clean record of property holdings, i.e., not have property assets frozen by the EU due to sanctions.
Show proof of an annual income of at least €50,000. This requirement increases by an additional €15,000 for a spouse and €10,000 for each eligible dependent child. The spouse’s income may be included in the calculation of the total annual income.
Possess health insurance that covers themselves and any eligible dependents.
Prove that they do not intend to undertake any lucrative employment in Cyprus except for their employment as Directors in a company they are investing in as part of the Golden Visa program.
Provide evidence that the main applicant can maintain the initial qualifying investment and the income requirements for themselves and their dependents.
Pass the due diligence process and be of good moral character.
Be able to collect all required materials for the Golden Visa application process.
Prove that all funds for the Golden Visa program were acquired lawfully​​.

The investment options for the Golden Visa include:

Purchase of a house or apartment from a development company valued at a minimum of €300,000 + VAT.
Purchase of other real estate types (e.g., shop, restaurant, hotel, office building) valued at €300,000.
Investment in the share capital of a Cyprus-based company that has local business activities and personnel, valued at €300,000.
Investment in a unit of the Cyprus Investment Organization of Collective Investments, maintaining investments within Cyprus territory​​.

The processing time for obtaining the Cyprus Golden Visa is relatively quick compared to other European options. Residency permits are usually granted within two months. To maintain their Cyprus Golden Visa residency status, investors are required to make a single visit to Cyprus every two years​​.

For more detailed information and to apply for the Cyprus Golden Visa, you can visit the official website of the Civil Registry and Migration Department of Cyprus

The Cyprus Golden Visa offers these key benefits:

After obtaining permanent residency (PR), there’s the potential to apply for a Cyprus passport within five years​​.
Most residents in Cyprus speak English, easing integration for expats and smooth business operations.
Cyprus enjoys a pleasant Mediterranean climate with long dry summers and mild winters.
The marine and coastal environments are highly rated, and many beaches have been awarded the Blue Flag for excellent quality.
Cyprus has a modern and effective healthcare system, contributing to a high average life expectancy.
The country is becoming a hub for quality education, with a significant increase in the number of foreign students.
Cyprus is a popular vacation destination where your real estate investment can eventually become a source of income as a vacation rental. 

Why does Cyprus offer Golden Visas? 

The program was introduced in 2013 as a government initiative to attract foreign direct investment and stimulate economic growth in the country. By offering permanent residency to foreign investors and their families, Cyprus aims to boost its economy.

Specifically, the Golden Visa program was launched to encourage foreign direct investment into the real estate sector of Cyprus’s local economy. This strategy helps to strengthen the property market and create a more robust economic environment.

Cyprus is known as a sunny scenic island, an interesting culture similar to Greece, and a favorable tax regime, making it an attractive location for entrepreneurs, retirees, and companies. The Golden Visa program complements these features by offering an English-friendly location with excellent education and healthcare institutions, further enhancing its appeal as a business and investment destination.

The program has been successful in attracting significant foreign investment. Since its inception, it has attracted over 4,000 investors and generated more than €8 billion in foreign investment for Cyprus. This influx of investment has had a positive impact on the Cypriot economy, showcasing the effectiveness of the program in achieving its goals.

The post Does Cyprus have a Golden Visa Program? appeared first on My Dolce Casa.

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