Stricter supervision in relation to the Scheme for Naturalisation of Investors in Cyprus by Exception

Posted on 20 Mar 2018

Recently there were a lot of publications within the European Union expressing concerns about the allegedly very high number of Cypriot passports being given to foreign investors the last few years. The Council of Ministers has decided on 9th January 2018 with the decision with number 84.069, to impose a stricter supervision of all the parties involved in the Scheme for the naturalisation of non-Cypriot investors in Cyprus by exception.

The said decision was officially published in the Gazette of the Republic of Cyprus on 2nd March 2018.  It provides the following:

  • The establishment of a Supervisory and Control Committee, consisting of officials from the Ministry of the Interior, the Ministry of Finance and the Cyprus Organization of Promoting investments (CIPA).
  • The establishment of a Register of Service Providers in relation to the “Scheme for Naturalisation of Investors” where all the natural and legal persons providing services related to the Scheme, will have to be registered.  The said natural and legal persons shall apply for their registration and they shall meet specific admission criteria for their application to be successful. Applications for the Naturalisation of non-Cypriot Investors filed by natural and legal persons not registered with the Register will not be accepted.
  • The adoption of a Code of Conduct, which has been prepared by the CIPA and which includes guidelines regarding the promotion of the said Scheme. The Code of Conduct will be applied by all natural and legal persons related to the Scheme, such as Service Providers, real estate agents, construction companies, banking and credit institutions et al. 
  • The prohibition of the advertising of the Scheme in public places (including the internet) and particularly in relation to the image of the Cypriot passport.  The details in relation to this prohibition, as well as the consequences of non-compliance, are included in the Code of Conduct mentioned above.
  • The obligation of the Applicant and of the Registered Service Provider to submit a signed declaration confirming their compliance with the Code of Conduct and practices and that they are fully informed in relation to the procedures of the Scheme.

The content of the above is to provide an overview of the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought on each particular case. For any further information, please contact Andria Kouloumi at a.kouloumi@kyprianou.com.cy