On 26 February 2019, the official government gazette of the Republic of Cyprus published the decision of the Council of Ministers, dated 13 February 2019, in which amendments to the Cyprus Investment Programme were approved — specifically with regard to acquiring Cypriot citizenship.
The main changes, listed below, are coming into force on 15 May 2019:
- The investment period will increase from three to five years from the date of naturalization for all new applicants submitting after 15 May 2019. Currently, for existing applicants the period for retaining the investment is three years.
- A new donation fee of EUR 150,000 (EUR 75,000 to the Research and Innovation Foundation and EUR 75,000 to the Cyprus Land Development Corporation) for each main applicant submitting after 15 May 2019 will come into force, where previously no such donation was required.
- All new applicants must hold a valid Schengen visa — a copy of which will need to be added to the applicant’s citizenship file.
- All new applicants submitting after 15 May 2019, who wish to invest in housing units that have already been used to acquire Cypriot citizenship via the Cyprus Investment Programme, will now need to invest at least EUR 2.5 million — up from the current rate of EUR 2 million.
Considering the above, it is in every potential investor’s interest to proceed with submitting their citizenship application before 15 May in order to benefit from the current terms and conditions of the Cyprus Investment Programme.