Visa for Permanent Residence in Cyprus
Cyprus was ranked as the 5th best country for relocation in the world by a reputable International Lifestyle review (2014). The criteria for this report was based on favorable business and leisure indicators. The only 2 countries in Europe to make it into the top 5 were Switzerland and Cyprus, which was ranked highly, due to its favorable tax regime for new residents and for the citizenship by investment schemes.
There are many reasons why Non EU citizens are finding Cyprus the ideal country for relocation, to name a few:
Geographically close in proximity to 3 continents
Presidential Democracy and stable economy
Low tax rates and favorable incentives for new citizens
No Inheritance Tax
Reasonably priced properties of high standard
Low cost of living
Oil and Gas potential
Most citizens speak fluent English
High quality Healthcare
Excellent private and public schools
Superior telecommunications and travel connections
Highly trained professionals in service industry
Lowest crime rate in the EU
Schengen applicant state
For those who do not have the means to obtain Cypriot Citizenship by Investment, the following criteria has to be met and approved by the Immigration Control Board before the Minister of Interior can grant a residence visa. Visas will only be granted for work permits if the business that will be carried on does not negatively affect the economy or create undue local competition in the Republic of Cyprus.
Anyone intending to work as a self-employed person in the following trades in the Republic of Cyprus will be granted a visa to live in Cyprus, provided they have a clear police record and all the necessary permits with disposable capital as follows:
Agriculture Euro 250,000
Mining Euro 200,000
Any trade or profession Euro 150,000
Profession or Science for Academics with Professional qualification must have adequate funds
Persons who have been offered permanent employment
Persons with disposable annual income which is deemed high enough to provide a decent standard of living in the Republic of Cyprus and this is subject to the approval of the Immigration Control Board.
For those who require Permanent Residency, this can be obtained through investing in real estate. This is easier than acquiring Citizenship by Investments which has different criteria. With Permanent Residency, you will get a residency permit and a Cypriot passport. To qualify for this permit you must invest a minimum of EUR 300,000 in a new property. The permit can be granted within a couple of months for the whole family provided that all the criteria which include a clean police record are met. This permit covers the whole family including parents of the main applicant and children up to the age of 25 years. It is valid for life and can be passed on to dependents. The requirements for keeping your Permanent Residence is that all family members visit Cyprus at least once every 2 years. Once obtained this permit will allow all members of the family easy access throughout the European Union.
THE SCHENGEN AREA
The establishment of the Schengen Area allows all residents of the member countries to cross internal borders without any visas or border checks. The advanced shared data base that these countries have enables the exchange of information between these countries with full cooperation from law enforcement. Uniform Schengen visas are issued from all the members to their citizens and they are allowed to travel freely between all the Schengen countries. Holders of Schengen Visas get two or multiple entries as well as long stay visas, and are allowed to enter Cyprus without a Visa as from the 17th June 2014. Permanent resident permits issued by a Schengen country, and Romanian, Croatian and Bulgarian multiple entry visas, are also able to enter the Republic of Cyprus without a Cypriot visa. The maximum period allowed with these visas, is 90 days every six months.
Most of the member states of the European Union are members of the Schengen Agreement which currently has 26 member states. The EU countries that are not members are Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia and Cyprus, but they will be joining soon. Non EU countries that are members are the Azores, Madeira and The Canary Islands. It is also noted that Ireland and the United Kingdom are not members of the Schengen agreement either. All other countries will require a visa to enter into the Republic of Cyprus. These can be issued by the Cypriot embassies and consulates worldwide.