European Citizenship by Investment Programmes Comparison ( Second Passport Benefits )
Which Citizenship Programmes offers the highest value for the Investor and his family
What Is Citizenship?
Citizenship is the relationship between an individual and a nation state whereby the state grants the citizen certain rights, such as the right to vote, work and own property, and in return the citizen accepts the responsibility of upholding the laws and customs of that state. Citizenship unites different people under a common identity.
Traditional means of acquiring citizenship and the corresponding passports have been birth, naturalization and marriage. Naturalization is the process by which a resident of a country can acquire citizenship usually by residing in that country for a certain number of years. Since 1984 investment in the host country has been another way of acquiring citizenship.
What Is Citizenship by Investment?
Citizenship by investment is the process of obtaining a second citizenship and passport by investing in the economy of the host country. Citizenship by investment programs legally confer citizenship status faster than traditional immigration processes and do so without requiring investors to put their lives on hold.
Let's talk about Cyprus, an island laying in the heart of the Mediterranean sea, with a size that is big enough to be called cosmopolitan, at the same time, small enough to be regarded as the ideal place to raise a family. An island which enjoys more than 300 days of sunshine yearly, with mild winters and the largest number of blue flag beaches per coastal line in the world! A sovereign European country with a cultural heritage so rich that is lost in the centuries, yet an island that patiently awaits to be explored and re-discovered, offering an unparalleled level of quality of life which is second to none.
The recent political and social upheaval in the Eastern Mediterranean basin, which has spilled over the wider area of the Middle East, in combination with the political and economic uncertainty in the greater region, not only upgrade the strategic position and geopolitical role of Cyprus in this part of the world, they render Cyprus a symbol of security and stability, in its capacity as the Easternmost border of Europe.
Real estate and land developing
The applicant should have a direct investment in Cyprus of at least €2,0 million (excl. VAT) for the acquisition or development of real estate projects (residential,* commercial, tourism sector or other infrastructure). It shall be noted that the acquisition of land is not considered to be a qualifying investment under this criterion.
Purchase or participation in Cypriot businesses or companies
The applicant must have made an investment of at least €2,0 million (excl. VAT) in the purchase or participation in businesses or companies, that are based and operating in Cyprus. These businesses or companies should have a tangible presence and substantial activity in Cyprus, as well as employ at least five (5) Cypriot or EU citizens who have been legally residing in Cyprus for a continuous period of at least 5 years.
Investment in AIFs or financial assets of Cypriot businesses or organisations
The applicant must have purchased financial assets of at least €2,0 million (excl. VAT), i.e. units in Alternative Investments Funds, bonds, debentures, other securities, etc, registered and issued in the Republic of Cyprus, in companies or organisations with substantial economic activity in Cyprus which are regulated by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission.
Combination of investments
The applicant may choose to proceed with a combination of any of the above investments, with a total investment amount of at least €2,0 million (excl. VAT). Such combination may also include the acquisition of
government bonds of the Republic of Cyprus for a maximum amount of €500.000.
Terms and conditions:
In addition to satisfying any one of the above criteria, the applicant must:
a) Have a clean criminal record.
b) Own a permanent residence in Cyprus of a market value of
at least €500.000 (excl. VAT).
*If the investment is only in residential property there is no
additional requirement to acquire a perminent residence in
Cyprus of at least €500.000 (excl. VAT).
c) Submit a residence permit application simultaneously
with the Cyprus citizenship application. The residence
permit is obtained almost immediately and the application
procedure is straightforward.
Other useful notes:
• The investor is obliged to retain the investment for at least 3 years following the acquisition of the Cyprus citizenship but must retain possession of a permanent residence of at least €500.000 (excl. VAT) for life. If the investor chooses to dispose the permanent residence at any time this needs to be substituted with another property of an equal or higher purchase price.
• The investor’s parents are entitled to apply for the Cyprus citizenship provided they are owners of a permanent residence of at least €500.000 (excl. VAT). For this purpose the investor and his/her parents may
consider acquiring a single co-owned residential property of a total value of at least €1,0 million (excl. VAT).
• The investor’s minor children, as well as his/her adult financially dependent children up to the age of 28 are entitled to apply for the Cyprus citizenship.
As a result, the adoption of a very successful “Citizenship by investment” programme and the fast track “Permanent Residency” programme enacted
by the Cyprus Government in the last few years, rightfully render Cyprus as the “jurisdiction of choice” for many high net worth individuals and their families who decide to live, invest and set up their businesses in
Even though the procedure for obtaining Cypriot citizenship is relatively straightforward, it is a very delicate process that requires a meticulous level of focus on the detail and structuring of the investment. Oikos Group has a wealth of international and local expertise and a high success rate of delivering the grant of citizenship within the three-month time frame.
Please contact us for more information or to arrange for an initial confidential and personal consultation.
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