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The Council of Ministers issued recently its Decision setting new criteria and conditions for the Naturalization of Foreign Investors / Entrepreneurs by Exemption on the basis of para. 2(f) of the Third Schedule of the Civil Registry Laws 2002-2011, and set the following new criteria and conditions:- 

A.  CRITERIA 
1. Direct Investments: The applicant should have direct investments in the Republic of Cyprus amounting to a minimum of €10 million.  Direct Investments include among other things purchases of immovable properties, businesses / companies, shares, financial assets (e.g. securities registered and issued in the Republic of Cyprus); or 
2. Entrepreneurial Activities: The applicant should have established/registered in the Republic of Cyprus a Company/Companies controlled by him, with a total minimum turnover, in accordance with the company’s/companies Audited Accounts, of €10 million per annum, on average, over the last 3 years preceding the year of the application and at least 1/3 of the applicant’s employees are citizens of the Republic of Cyprus; or 
3. Introduction of new and innovative technologies, Research Centres: The applicant should prove that he has introduced on a large scale new and innovative technologies in vital/major sectors of the Cyprus economy or that he has established an important Research Centre for the conduct of research locally, on a large scale; or 
4. Bank Deposits: The applicant should have personal deposits in Cypriot banks or deposits of privately owned Companies or of a trust (in which he is a shareholder) in the Republic of Cyprus amounting to a minimum of €15 million, spanning a five year fixed period. It should be noted that the above-mentioned deposits must be held in a banking institution within the Republic of Cyprus for a period no less than five (5) years. In the case where following a periodic inspection it is ascertained that the condition is being violated, the naturalization may be revoked; or 
5. Combination of Direct Investments, Entrepreneurial Activities and Deposits in Cypriot banks: The applicant should have a combination of the above-mentioned assets amounting to €15 million; or 
6. Direct Income / Remuneration for Services: The applicant should have established a company or  companies, the management of which is in the Republic of Cyprus, and in the last 3 years preceding the year of the application to have paid into the Cyprus economy either in the form of income tax payments / V.A.T.  and/or in the form of remuneration for the purchase of business services (legal, accounting, auditing, banking and others) at least €500.000 on average per annum.

B.  CONDITIONS 
1. Age: The applicant should be at least 30 years old. 
2. Clean Criminal Record: A clean criminal record from the country of origin and/or from the Cyprus Police. Confirmation that the applicant’s name is not included on the list of persons whose property is ordered to be frozen within the boundaries of the European Union. 
3. Residence in the Republic of Cyprus: The applicant is required to have a permanent privately-owned residence in the Republic of Cyprus, the value of which must exceed the amount of €500.000 at current prices.

For more information on the above Decisions of the Cyprus Council of Ministers setting new criteria and conditions for the Naturalization of Foreign Investors / Entrepreneurs or assistance for applying and preparation of the relevant supporting documentation please contact Mr. Soteris Flourentzos at SOTERIS PITTAS & CO LLC, by telephone (+357 25 028460) or by fax (+357 25 028461) or by e-mail (sflourentzos@pittaslegal.com).

The statements contained in this publication are not legal opinions and readers should not act on the basis of such statements without first consulting a lawyer.