Like many European nations, six years ago, Cyprus was on the brink of economic ruin. But unlike many of its neighbours, Cyprus’ economy has recovered and is currently thriving. This cycle of tough times followed by extraordinary growth is a familiar narrative in the economic history of Cyprus—demonstrating a resilience that makes Cyprus very attractive to investors.
As a member of the European Union, Cyprus uses the euro as its official currency and has a free-market, service-based economy. That same economy is also considered to be a high-income economy according to the World Bank.
Cyprus has long been a geographical bridge between east and west thanks to its location in the Mediterranean Sea. This strategic location, combined with an educated, English-speaking population, strong transportation and infrastructure, and high standard of living all make Cyprus an attractive place to live, work, play, and do business.
Because Cyprus is located strategically between Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, shipping has been part of the economy for hundreds of years and the industry has evolved over time. Thanks to this unique geography, Cyprus is one of the largest shipping management centres in the world with nearly 50 shipping management companies and marine-related foreign enterprises based on the island. Cyprus is also home to the 10th largest fleet in the world with well over 1,000 vessels calling the tiny island nation home.
The real estate market in Cyprus has recently become a growing industry due in part to the country’s hugely popular Citizenship by Investment Program. Through the Program, interested individuals can purchase real estate valued at a minimum of €2,000,000 (plus VAT) in exchange for the right to full citizenship within 6 months. Recent real estate numbers show that nearly half of all properties purchased in Cyprus are being sold to foreign investors.
Another reason why Cyprus is attractive for foreign investors is due to the country’s favourable tax rates. Cyprus offers a corporate tax rate of just 12.5 per cent—one of the lowest in the European Union. Additionally, Cyprus has concluded treaties on double taxation with more than 40 counties and as a member of the Eurozone has no exchange restrictions. There is also no worldwide income tax.
For those investors looking for a strong economy as well as an opportunity to be part of the EU, Cyprus is a very attractive option for second citizenship.
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