Cyprus’ Citizenship-by-Investment continues to be one of the leading programs in 2015

Cyprus' recently revised taxation framework makes it arguably the most attractive citizenship-by-investment program in Europe to offer non-domiciled investors tax free profits.Cyprus' Citizenship-by-Investment Program continues to be one of the leading citizenship-by-investment programs in 2015, according to its recent Global Residence and Citizenship Program (GRCP) Report.
The President of the Republic of Cyprus, Mr. Nicos Anastasiades, recently announced a number of key revisions to the taxation framework of Cyprus and its economy during his speech at the 54th Annual General Assembly of the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Cyprus. These changes allow Cyprus to offer investors tax free profits until the end of 2016, making it the only country in Europe to provide such incentives.

Cyprus continues to be a popular destination for individuals seeking alternative citizenship or residence. Cyprus' program ranked tops in terms of Quality of Life, Visa Free Access, Processing Time (currently three months), Investment Requirements, Residence Requirements, Relocation Flexibility, Physical Visit Required and Transparency.

The recent changes in Cyprus' tax laws will further enhance its position as a top business and financial center. It is a major hub for international trade, and the island offers a good quality of life for its residents, excellent healthcare system, advanced infrastructure and diverse options for education - all of which makes it a highly attractive destination for investors or high net worth individuals (HNWIs) considering an alternative citizenship or residence.

The Cyprus Tax Update has introduced the status of a 'non-domicile' individual, targeting high-level business executives and HNWIs. This revision exempts such persons from the Special Defense Contribution Tax, which is currently 30% on interest income and 17% on dividend income. In addition, there has been a reduction of transfer fees on real estate transactions by 50% until the end of 2016.The recent changes also exempts investors from capital gains tax on any Real Estate transaction, provided that the acquisition is between the date of entry into force of the law and 31 December 2016. It also includes the consolidation and odernization of immovable property tax and transfer fees and notional interest deduction on fresh capital injected into Cyprus companies.

With Cyprus now offering an even more advantageous tax regime and numerous other business incentives, we expect to see increased demand from HNWIs, investors and entrepreneurs. This move by the government will further streamline the island's tax system, boost the property sector and drive more foreign direct investment.