The Committee for the Supervision and Control of the Governmental Program "Citizenship for Investments" starts receiving applications from suppliers of related services for inclusion in the official register of such companies. This is stated in the message of the Ministry of Finance of Cyprus from 15 June.
The application can be submitted on the website of the committeecipregistry.mof.gov.cy(Greek, English).
Service providers that facilitate the acquisition of citizenship by investors, in particular developers, legal and accounting firms, are required to follow the provisions of a specially developed set of rules of conduct, which, among other things, requires verification of the sources of origin of the investor's capital. In addition, such companies have no right to promote the program of investment citizenship as "the sale of passports of Cyprus".
The register will be published on 31 July 2018 on the websites of the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of the Interior and the investment agency Invest Cyprus (formerly the Cyprus Investment Promotion Agency). It is noted that the register of 31 July will include companies whose applications were submitted and approved before 18 July. The register will be updated regularly.
Meanwhile, applicants for obtaining investment citizenship will continue to follow the previous procedure for filing documents until 30 July this year. Starting from 31 July, applications for the naturalization of investors can be submitted only by intermediaries included in the register. By the way, on 21 June an explanatory seminar devoted to the new rules will be held for the companies. The presence of a certificate of participation in it is one of the mandatory conditions for inclusion in the register.
As you know, the Cypriot program "citizenship for investments", officially named the Cyprus investment scheme, allows investors to obtain the citizenship of Cyprus on an expedited procedure. To do this, you need to invest in the economy of the country 2 million euros. Since the launch of the program in 2008, the citizens of Cyprus have become 1 685 investors and 1 651 members of their families. In May this year the government introduced a limit on the number of passports for investors at the level of 700 per year. Last year, citizenship received 503 investor, and this is the largest number for the entire duration of the program.
At the same time, it was decided to tighten the verification procedure, which must pass the applicants. Presumably, this step was taken in response to criticism from many international organizations, including Transparency International: in its opinion, the Cyprus investment program undermines efforts to combat money laundering and corruption. Attention of the Cypriot authorities, in turn, was directed to work with intermediaries who actively advertised their services in conjunction with the "sale" of Cypriot passports.