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What is Citizenship by Investment?

Citizenship by Investment is the means by which a high net-worth individual can obtain citizenship in a country of their choosing for themselves, their spouse and dependent children, by investing funds into that country. The benefits of citizenship in more then one country are many – it provides a family with stability and security while affording them financial privacy for banking and investments.

UK Citizenship by Investment

To gain citizenship into the UK in this manner, an investor can invest funds into a UK business that is active and trading, and cannot be offshore. The minimum investment value is
£2 million and typically an investment of this amount would gain the investor citizenship within
a five year period.

Why the UK?

The United Kingdom provides a highly attractive investment prospect. The UK offers a fantastic standard of living, with some of the world’s best free healthcare provisions and globally recognised educational institutions including both private and state schools, top universities and other higher education providers.

The UK is a multi-cultural society, and this vibrancy lends itself well to business with the number of businesses in the city increasing by 46 percent since 2012. The capital city, London, has been named the most powerful city in the world for the fifth consecutive year in the 2016 Global Power City Index, and boasts a powerful financial hub alongside a thriving ‘start-up culture’ of new businesses.


For investors wishing to seek second citizenship into the UK, you must have a minimum of £2 million of your own money that you will invest into the UK in either Government Bonds, shares or loan capital in UK companies (note: these must be active and trading, and cannot be offshore companies). You must also be intending to make the UK your main home, spending no less than six months each year in the country in order to maintain your visa status, and be able to provide for any and all dependents without taking employment (self-employment and business not included).

You should be able to demonstrate a good knowledge of either the English language, Welsh, or Scottish Gaelic, and in the 12 months leading up to your application you should not have spent more than 90 days outside the country, and your total number of days spent outside the UK throughout the five year application process should not exceed 450. You must not be in breach of any immigration laws and must be able to display good moral character.

Typically, the higher the investment that you make into the UK, the quicker you will be able to obtain your citizenship. An investment of £2 million will give you permanent residency after a period of five years, however an investment of £5 million will secure residency in three years, and an investment of £10 million will provide for residency in two years.


As of 23rd June 2016, the UK will remain a member of the EU for a further two years, affording UK citizens visa free travel to, and the right to live, study and work in, all EU countries including:

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Slovakia
  • Spain
  • Sweden

This right also extends to Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein.

With a European Health Card, EU citizens have the right to healthcare in any EU member state should it become necessary either for free or for a reduced cost depending on which country they are visiting.

EU Citizenship through Cyprus

EU Citizenship through CyprusTo gain citizenship in Cyprus in this manner, an investor must place a minimum of
€2 million into Cypriot residential real estate, either via a singular investment or across a portfolio where one residence is named as a personal residence. Alternatively you can also make an investment of at least €2 million in regulated funds operating in Cyprus.

Citizenship by investment into an EU member country affords freedom of movement for business and residential purposes throughout the European Union, with the added benefit of good healthcare and educational provisions as well as good investment opportunities and financial freedom.

Why Cyprus?

Situated at the crossroads of Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East, Cyprus is strategically placed for global travel, with easy access to the European Union for both business and pleasure. Boasting the cleanest bathing waters in Europe, 340 days of sunshine per year, good schools and universities, first rate healthcare, a small population and a low crime rate, Cyprus is the ideal place to raise a family.

English is widely spoken and understood throughout the country, which was ranked 39th in The World Bank’s “Doing Business” 2014 and 33rd in the Forbes Best Countries for Business Index. Cyprus benefits from no inheritance tax, and its corporate tax structure and double tax treaty network have been described as the most favourable in Europe. It also gives investors access to free trade within the EU, with the ability for businesses to reach up to 500 million EU citizens, as well as the right to live, study or work in any EU member state.

In March 2014, Cypriot legislation regarding foreign investors was amended to enable investors to become a Cypriot citizen through naturalisation. This means that investors also become an EU citizen, allowing them to work, live and study in any EU country. Since the legislation was amended, the process has become more affordable and accessible.

EU member countries include:

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • United Kingdom*

*As of 23rd June 2016, the United Kingdom elected to leave the European Union, whereby there will be a two year period before the country revokes its EU membership.

As a citizen of Cyprus, you will also benefit from visa free travel to over 150 countries including:

  • Albania
  • Andorra
  • Anguilla
  • Antigua & Barbuda
  • Argentina
  • Armenia
  • Aruba
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Bahamas
  • Bahrain
  • Bangladesh
  • Barbados
  • Belgium
  • Belize
  • Bermuda
  • Bolivia
  • Bosnia & Herzegovina
  • Botswana
  • Brazil
  • British Virgin Islands
  • Brunei Darussalam
  • Bulgaria
  • Cambodia
  • Canada
  • Cape Verde
  • Cayman Islands
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Comoros
  • Costa Rica
  • Croatia
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Djibouti
  • Dominica
  • Dominican Republic
  • Ecuador
  • Egypt
  • El Salvador
  • Estonia
  • Falkland Islands
  • Faroe Islands
  • Fiji
  • Finland
  • France
  • French Guinea
  • French Polynesia
  • French Southern
  • Gambia
  • Georgia
  • Germany
  • Gibraltar
  • Greece
  • Greenland
  • Grenada
  • Guatemala
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Haiti
  • Honduras
  • Hong Kong
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Indonesia
  • Iran
  • Iraq
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Jamaica
  • Japan
  • Jordan
  • Kenya
  • Kiribati
  • Kuwait
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Lao People’s
  • Latvia
  • Lebanon
  • Lesotho
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Macedonia
  • Madagascar
  • Malawi
  • Malaysia
  • Maldives
  • Malta
  • Marshall Islands
  • Martinique
  • Mauritania
  • Mauritius
  • Mexico
  • Micronesia
  • Moldova
  • Monaco
  • Montenegro
  • Montserrat
  • Morocco
  • Mozambique
  • Myanmar
  • Mayotte
  • Nepal
  • Netherlands
  • New Caledonia
  • New Zealand
  • Nicaragua
  • Niue
  • Norway
  • Oman
  • Palau
  • Panama
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Pitcairn
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Qatar
  • Reunion
  • Romania
  • Saint Helena, Ascension, and Tristan De Cunha
  • Saint Kitts and Nevis
  • Saint Lucia
  • Saint Martin
  • Saint Pierre and Miquelon
  • Saint Vincent & the Grenadines
  • Samoa
  • San Marino
  • Sao Tome and Prinicpe
  • Senegal
  • Serbia
  • Seychelles
  • Singapore
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Solomon Islands
  • Somalia
  • South Africa
  • South Korea
  • Spain
  • Sri Lanka
  • Swaziland
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Taiwan
  • Tajikistan
  • Tanzania
  • Thailand
  • Timor-Leste
  • Togo
  • Tonga
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Turkey
  • Tuvalu
  • Uganda
  • Ukraine
  • United Arab Emirates
  • United Kingdom
  • Uruguay
  • Vanuatu
  • Vatican
  • Venezuela
  • Wallis and Futuna
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Business in Cyprus

In 2004, Cyprus became a full European Union member state, joining the EU Monetary Union in 2008. Cypriot infrastructure is advanced, benefiting from two deep sea ports, two international airports and a high speed internet and telecommunications systems as well as good roads providing connections between all cities.

It has the third largest merchant fleet in the EU, and its deep sea ports are strategically placed in proximity to the Suez Canal, making it the largest third party ship management centre in the European Union. It ranks 4th out of all EU member countries for innovation and 6th for entrepreneurship with many multinational ICT firms operating regional headquarters in the country. The Cypriot tax system is highly favourable, providing an ideal gateway for channelling foreign investments, and is in full compliance with EU and OECD regulations. It also has a modern legal system based upon the British legal system, with many law and accounting firms holding offices in the country.

Your investment options in Cyprus

Citizenship by Investment in Cyprus is one of the most simple and efficient forms of investor immigration available, granting successful applicants both residency, citizenship and a Cypriot passport within 3-6 months, with no period of residency within the country required.

Interested investors can choose from option A or B.

A) Invest at least €2 million into real estate in order to gain citizenship – this can be either one property or spread across several, with one property selected as a personal residence. There is no requirement that you physically reside in Cyprus after approval of citizenship. The investor’s spouse, minor children, dependent children aged 27 and under (providing they are in full time education, or if they are severely mentally or physically disabled), and the investor’s parents are also eligible for citizenship however the latter must also invest at least €500,000 into a permanent residence in order to comply with the requirements of the program.

B) Invest at least €2 million in regulated funds operating in Cyprus. You would be required need to keep the purchased assets for a minimum three year period.

Cyprus welcomes dual citizenship from all nationalities, and does not require a medical test or interview in order to apply. Citizenship is passed on through descent, offering a legacy to future generations. There are also no tax consequences unless you have opted to become a tax resident in Cyprus. There is an exit strategy after three years, however the investor must always either maintain or purchase a property to the value of at least €500,000.

Applicants must be able to provide copies of their passport, birth certificate and marriage certificate (where applicable) in either English or Greek. They must also be able to provide a copy of their criminal record (also in English or Greek).