Use the Lexology Navigator tool to compare the answers in this article with those from other jurisdictions.
Highly skilled individuals
What unsponsored immigration routes are available for highly skilled foreign nationals to seek employment in your jurisdiction? What are the eligibility criteria, application procedures and maximum period of stay for each?
What unsponsored immigration routes are available for entrepreneurs seeking to establish a business in your jurisdiction? What are the eligibility criteria, application procedures and maximum period of stay for each?
What unsponsored immigration routes are available for foreign investors seeking to invest in your jurisdiction? What are the eligibility criteria, application procedures and maximum period of stay for each?
Are any immigration routes open to foreign nationals based on ancestry or descent?
If an applicant’s mother or father is or was a Cypriot national, he or she can apply for citizenship.
Are there any other unsponsored immigration routes?
Extensions, permanent residence and citizenship
Extensions and status changes
Can short-term visa or work permit holders switch to long-term visas? If so, what conditions and procedures apply?
Temporary visa and work permit holders can apply for long-term residence if they reside in Cyprus for at least five years. Applicants must be present during the meeting with immigration officials and provide all of the required documents, including:
- his or her curriculum vitae (CV);
- a criminal record check;
- proof of his or her medical insurance;
- his or her social insurance report;
- his or her tax declarations;
- his or her bank statements;
- copies of his or her passport (valid for at least two years);
- his or her income certificate; and
- his or her property ownership or rental agreement.
There may also be a language requirement.
Under what conditions can long-term visas be extended?
A long-term visa can be extended three months before its expiration if the applicant supplies the documents listed above.
Can long-term visa holders apply for permanent residence? If so, what conditions and procedures apply?
Long-term visa holders can apply for permanent residency. However, once this status has been granted, they must sign an agreement that they cannot work in Cyprus. An easier way to apply for permanent residency is through:
- the purchase of residential property and the fast-track procedure (ie, the purchase of a residential property worth €300,000 plus value added tax, if any) to obtain permanent residency within two months; or
- the Category F procedure, through which applicants purchase residential property or agree a long-term rental agreement to obtain permanent residency within one year.
A long-term visa holder who wishes to apply for permanent residency via the Category F procedure must provide the Immigration Authority with his or her:
- bank statements;
- rental agreement or property deed;
- criminal record check;
- medical insurance certificate;
- CV; and
- proof of income.
Can long-term visa holders or permanent residents apply for citizenship? If so, what conditions and procedures apply?
Applicants who reside in Cyprus for seven calendar years have the right to apply for citizenship if they can prove that they resided in Cyprus continuously for one year before their application. The authorities check applicants’ passports to calculate the number of days spent in Cyprus as well as their:
- proof of residence;
- tax declarations;
- bank statements; and
- criminal record.
This procedure can take up to three years.
Click here to view the full article.