Author Archive

Taxation of Long-Term Leasing of Yachts

In terms of the Guidelines issued by both the Cyprus Tax Department and the Maltese Revenue, the overall VAT liability incurred on the leasing of a yacht can be reduced substantially depending on the extent of the effective use and enjoyment of the yacht within EU territorial waters.

Introduction

In March 2019, on the strength of experience and knowledge acquired in the yachting industry, both the Cyprus Tax Department and the Maltese Revenue, issued a new set of Guidelines on the matter of yacht leasing services. Whilst still based on Article 59a of the EU VAT Directive, the new Guidelines reflect the recent EU VAT developments and practices.

In terms of the new Guidelines, VAT on leases that are deemed to take place in Cyprus or in Malta is calculated on the basis of the yacht’s effective use and enjoyment within EU territorial waters. Effectively, this means that no VAT is chargeable on the portion of the lease attributable to effective use and enjoyment of the yacht outside the EU territorial waters or within international waters. Hence, this supply of services by the lessor, is taxable at the basic VAT rate but only to the extent that the leased yacht is used within the territorial waters of the European Union (EU).

Rationale

The long-term yacht leases (i.e. leases covering more than 90 days’ of continuous possession or use of the yacht) is considered a supply of a service falling within scope of Cyprus or Maltese VAT when the yacht is put at the disposal of the lessee in Cyprus or in Malta, provided that the lessor is established in Cyprus or in Malta. Such rule applies provided that the lease contract does not include an “option to buy” clause and therefore there will be no transfer of ownership as per the lease agreement.

When leases fall within the scope of the Cyprus/Maltese VAT as aforesaid, in terms of the Cyprus/Maltese VAT Law and based on Article 59a of the EU VAT Directive, the Tax Authorities may consider the place of supply of such hiring of a means of transport to be outside Cyprus or Malta if effective use and enjoyment of the services takes place outside EU territorial waters.

LEGAL 500 – 2019 Ranking

Our Law Firm continues strengthening and securing its positions in the international legal rankings directory The Legal 500: Europe, Middle East & Africa.

We are pleased to announce that our Law Firm has once again been named and recommended as the as a TOP-TIER FIRM in Commercial, Corporate and M&A as well as Maritime and Admiralty.

Furthermore, our Law Firm has been recommended in the additional 3 practice areas:

  1. Dispute Resolution
  2. Intellectual Property
  3. Real Estate and Construction

We are proud to announce that our Commercial, Corporate and M&A Department received again Tier 1 recognition. Our firm is noted as one which has “a highly qualified team that finds solutions…has considerable skill in cross-border mergers and acquisitions. Koulla Demetriou is recommended along with the ‘very organised and competent’ Michalis Pittakis. Senior Associate Maria Taki is ‘smart and highly professional.”

Also, our Maritime and Admiralty Department team maintained Tier 1 recognition and has been characterized as“energetic and professional team adopts a very client-oriented approach to matters. The group serves as deputy registrar of the Belize-ship registry in Cyprus and Greece.”

Our Intellectual Property Department team received Tier 3 recognition and has been characterized as one which “gets the job done’ and advises on all forms of registered and unregistered intellectual property rights. Maria Kyriacou is at the helm”.

The Real Estate and Construction Department team received Tier 3 recognition and has been cited as following: “advises wealthy foreign clients on their real estate holdings in Cyprus. Savvas Georgiou and Marianna Pavlides have considerable experience in the space”.

And finally, Dispute Resolution Department team received Tier 4 recognition and was noted as a team which “works together as a cohesive unit to ensure that the client is consistently given the best legal advice. Phivos Zomenis is a key name and Christodoulos Clerides is a master tactician with superb negotiation skills”.

We are also very proud that 8 of our lawyers are recommended for their excellence:

  • In relation to our main area of practice, Commercial, Corporate and M&A, our Deputy Managing Director Koulla Demetriou and Senior Associate Lawyer Maria Taki were recommended.
  • Michalis Pittakis, Head of Corporate Department, was proclaimed as a Legal 500 “Next Generation Lawyer”.
  • For Dispute Resolution Phivos Zomenis is recommended.
  • Christodoulos Clerides is listed in the elite “Leading lawyers” list.
  • In relation to Intellectual Property, Maria Kyriacou is recommended.
  • Finally, in relation to Real Estate and Construction Marianna Pavlides and Savvas Georgiou are recommended.

In light of these achievements we would like to extend our sincere thanks to all our clients, without whom these recognitions would not have been possible.

For a complete view of our profile here.

Legal Update: Extension of Golden Visa Program to New Types of Investments

Law 4605/2019 which was published at the Greek Official Gazette on 01/04/2019, amended the Greek Immigration legislation and more particularly article 16 regarding Residence Permits for Investment Activity and introduced new types of investments (other than investment in real estate properties) qualifying for the “Golden Visa Program”.

According to the amended provisions of article 16:

– Within the framework of an investment scheme, there is no limitation on the number of investors, natural persons from non- EU countries, who may participate in the financing and receive a relevant residence permit, provided that each invests at least the minimum required amount, and

– It is heretofore possible to qualify for a residence permit when the investment is made through the participation of a foreign legal entity. In that case, the amended law provides for the possibility for up to 3 persons (shareholders or officers of the legal entity) to apply, depending on the amount of the investment.

Further to the amendments introduced, it also remains possible, in order to ensure the implementation and operation of the investment scheme, for up to 10 non- EU persons to apply for a residence permit in Greece, such number varying depending on the total amount of the investment.

In addition to the foregoing, new provisions are introduced in the aforementioned paragraph 16, operate an extension of the Golden Visa Program to new types of investments, by including also intangible investments to the investment activities pursuant to which a residence permit may be granted to non- EU citizens.

Such investments may be:

  • the contribution of capital for the acquisition of shares during the increase of share capital or bonds during the issue of bond loans in certain types of companies, for an amount of at least 400 000 euros,
  • the acquisition of Greek Public bonds for an amount of at least 400 000 euros,
  • a long term deposit of an amount of at least 400 000 euros,
  • the acquisition of shares, corporate bonds and bonds of the Greek Government, which are which are inserted to be listed or are listed in regulated markets in Greece, of an amount of at least 800 000 euros,
  • the acquisition of a share in an investment fund established in Greece or abroad, whose object is the investment exclusively in shares, corporate bonds and bonds of the Greek Government, of an amount of at least 400 000 euros.

For the aforementioned investments, the investor may be a natural person or a Greek legal entity wholly owned by the non- EU citizen or a foreign legal entity, in which case a residence permit may be granted to up to 3 persons, shareholders or officers, depending on the amount of the investment.

The non- EU investor meeting all the criteria required by law, must first apply and receive a visa for “investment in securities or bank deposit” and thereafter may apply for a 5- year residence permit for investment in securities or bank deposit, which may be renewed provided that the conditions are still fulfilled.

The aforementioned provisions shall enter into effect 3 months after its publication in the Official Gazette.

For more information please do not hesitate to contact us.


*This publication is intended only to provide general information and does not constitute personal advice. We do not accept or assume any responsibility towards readers of the present document for any loss resulting from acting on the basis of this publication.

Cyprus Tax Facts 2019

This publication provides a brief overview of the Cyprus Tax Legislation effective as at the date of publication. It contains useful information about each particular tax law and it can be used by natural persons and/or legal entities in handling their tax affairs.

It should be clarified however that the tax information provided by this publication is of general nature and therefore it cannot substitute proper professional advice which is always given after serious consideration of the merits of each case.

Cyprus Tax Facts 2019 (EN)

Cyprus Tax Facts 2019 (GR)

Cyprus Tax Facts 2019 (RU)

CYPRUS INVESTMENT PROGRAM: AMENDMENTS TO THE SCHEME

Based on the decision number 81.292, 84.068 and 84.957 dated 13/09/2016, 09/01/2018 and 21/05/2018, the Council of Ministers approved the following amendments to the Scheme, effective as of 13/02/2019:

  1. The investor must make a donation amounting to €75,000 to the “Research Promotion Foundation”. *
  2. The investor must make a donation amounting to €75,000 to the “Cyprus Land Development Corporation”. *
  3. The investor is required to maintain their investment for the period of at least 5 years from the date of naturalisation, previously the investor had to maintain their investment for at least 3 years.
  4. The investor can replace the investment, within the period of 5 years upon prior approval from the Ministry of Finance.
  5. Investment made in the Cyprus shipping industry will be considered as eligible criterion for the Cyprus Investment Program (CIP).
  6. The investor can now also make an investment in Registered Alternative Investments Organizations (UCITS), the UCITS will have the right/option to invest up to € 200,000 in the secondary markets of the Cyprus Stock Exchange.
  7. In case where residential property is acquired, and had already been used for the purposes of the Cyprus Investment Program (CIP), the investment amount increases from €2m to €2.5m. *
  8. The investment in Government bonds has been abolished.
  9. In case the investor invests in real estate development & infrastructure projects, the following documents must be provided to the authorities: *
    i) Planning permit;
    ii) Certificate of Completion, duly executed by the architect of the project;
    iii) In case where the property is under construction, at least 5% of the total value of the property must be blocked via a bank guarantee, the relevant amount will only be released to the Vendor upon completion of the property;
    iv) In case where there is a mortgage on the property to be acquired, a bank waiver letter must be in place.
  10. The applicant must be a holder of a valid Schengen visa.
  11. In the event that the applicant has submitted an application to another Member State for citizenship and the application has been rejected, the investor will not be able to apply for the Cyprus Investment Program.

Note: All remaining terms and conditions to the Program remain the same and a detailed analysis of the updated Program will be provided in our upcoming brochure.

* Changes effective from 15/05/2019

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RESIDENCE PERMIT FOR INVESTORS, ENTREPRENEURS AND FINANCIALLY INDEPENDENT PERSONS

Financially independent persons, investors in real estate as well as members and directors of Greek companies may apply for a residence permit in Greece.

  1. Investment in Immovable Property : The “Investor’s Permanent Residence Permit”
Who can apply?
  1. A person holding either personally or through a corporate entity the shares of which are fully owned by him/ her, in full ownership and possession, real estate in Greece. The value of the property must amount to at least €250 000.
OR
  1. A person having entered into a timeshare agreement or a lease for hotel accommodations or furnished touristic residences in a combined tourist facility in Greece. Their duration must be at least 10 years and their amount must be not less than 250 000 €.

The holder of an” investor’s permanent residence permit”, may be accompanied by the members of his/ her family. In that case, family members receive a personal residence permit which expires simultaneously with the permit of the sponsor.

The following persons are considered to be family members for the purposes of the foregoing:

  • The spouse
  • The direct descendants of the spouses or of either one of them, who are aged under 21 years old
  • The direct ascendants of the spouses
Duration of the residence permit:

 The residence permit is granted for 5 years. It may be renewed upon relevant application for further five- year periods for as long as the property remains under the ownership and possession of the applicant or the lease agreements remains in force and provided that all the relevant conditions required by law are fulfilled.

 

The sale of the property during the validity period of the residence permit to another non- EU citizen provides to the new buyer the right to be granted a residence permit. Simultaneously,  the residence permit of the seller is revoked.

Access to labour market: this type of residence permit does not provide access to labour market
  1. Financially Independent Persons
Who can apply?

Non- EU citizens having adequate resources at a level of steady annual income for the coverage of their living expenses may apply for a 2- year residence permit.

Such persons may also be accompanied by members of their families to whom a personal residence permit is granted.

Sufficient Income:

The condition for sufficient income must exist for each member of the family. The minimum income is 2000 euros/ month. Additionally, in case the person is accompanied by his family, this amount is increased by 20% for the spouse and 15% for each child.

The amount of the income may be proved by pension abroad, bank account or other proof that the person has its own sufficient income, of legal origin, to cover its expenses without being employed or exercise an independent economic activity in Greece.

Also, persons entitled to receive a pension from a Greek Institution of Principal Insurance may renew their residence permit, independently of the amount of the pension.

Duration of the residence permit:

The residence permit for financially independent persons is issued for 2 years and thereafter it may be renewed.

Access to labour market: this type of residence permit does not allow access to the labour market.
  1. Special purpose residence permit for members of boards of directors, shareholders, managers, legal representatives and senior managing officers of Greek companies as well as subsidiaries and branches of foreign companies
Who can apply?
  • – members of boards of directors,
  • – shareholders,
  • – managers,
  • – legal representatives and
  • – senior executives

of Greek corporate entities as well as subsidiaries and branches of foreign companies.

The aforementioned persons may be accompanied by the members of their family, who shall receive a permit for family reunification.

Conditions:
  • The company/ branch/ subsidiary is legally exercising a business activity in Greece.
  • Τhe Greek company/ business employs at least 25 persons.
Exception:
  • However, the requirement to employ at least 25 persons does not apply in case of members of boards of directors, shareholders, managers, legal representatives and senior executives of subsidiaries and branches of foreign companies legally exercising a business activity in Greece.
Duration of the residence permit:

This type of residence permit is issued for 2 years or for a period equal to the expected duration of the applicant’s stay in Greece. It is renewed every three years.

Access to labour market: the exercise of a specific profession is allowed.
ABSENCES FROM GREECE

In relation to persons having obtained a residence permit through investment in immovable property or persons who are financially independent, the law provides that periods of absence from Greece do not impede the renewal of the permit.

For all other residence permits mentioned hereinabove, the general provisions of the law apply. Consequently, the validity of the residence permit, is not affected by temporary absences which do not exceed six months per year or longer absences, such as in case of military service, or other serious reasons, such as pregnancy, motherhood, serious illness, studies or professional training in another member state or third country.

OUR SERVICES

 Our Firm provides legal advice and assistance in matters concerning the application by foreigners for residence permits.

 FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE FEEL FREE TO CONTACT US

This document does not amount to professional legal advice as it is only intended for information purposes.

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GOLDEN VISA : PERMANENT RESIDENCE PERMIT FOR INVESTORS IN REAL ESTATE IN GREECE

Law 4251 of 2014, also referred to as the Immigration and Social Integration Code, (as amended and hereinafter referred to as the “Law”), provides the opportunity to non- European Union nationals to obtain a permanent residence permit by investing in real estate in Greece. This is also known as the Golden Visa Program.

THE INVESTOR’S PERMANENT RESIDENCE PERMIT

According to the provisions of the Law, a citizen of a third country (i.e. non EU- national), having entered in Greece legally through any type of entry visa or already residing in Greece legally, is entitled to apply for a residence permit which is valid for 5 years in Greece, if :

  1. The said person holds either personally or through a Greek or EU- based corporate entity the shares of which are fully owned by him/ her, in full ownership and possession, real estate in Greece, with the value of the property amounting to at least €250 000.
  2. – The terms “value of the property” refer to the value mentioned in the sale contract (i.e. it is not a reference to the fair market value of the property).
  3. – The property may consist of several real estate properties. Their total value must be equal to or exceed €250 000.
  4. – In case of co- ownership of the property, the residence permit is granted only if the value of each percentage of ownership of each co- owner amounts to €250 000.
  5. – In case of co- ownership between spouses the residence permit is granted only if the property is owned jointly. This applies also in case of companions having entered into a civil partnership.
  6. – A person having acquired the property either through intestate succession, through a will or as a parental benefit may also benefit of this type of residence permit, provided he or she is over 18 years old.

OR

  • The said person has entered into a timeshare agreement or a lease for hotel accommodations or furnished touristic residences in a combined tourist facility in Greece. Their duration must be of at least 10 years and their amount not less than 250 000 €.
  • The applicant must pay the amount of the lease upfront, upon the execution of the relevant agreement.

The holder of an investor’s permanent residence permit, may be accompanied by the members of his/ her family. These family members, shall  obtain a personal residence permit. The residence permit of the said family members expires simultaneously with the residence permit of the sponsor.

The following persons are considered to be family members for the purposes of the foregoing:

  • – The spouse
  • – The direct descendants of the spouses or of either one of them, who are under the age 21 years old
  • – The direct ascendants of the spouses

DURATION OF THE INVESTOR’S PERMANENT RESIDENCE PERMIT

The residence permit is granted for 5 years. It may be renewed upon relevant application for another five- year periods for as long as the property remains under the ownership and possession of the applicant or the lease agreements remains in force and provided that all the relevant conditions required by law are fulfilled.

The sale of the property during the validity period of the residence permit to another non- EU citizen provides to the new buyer the right to be granted a residence permit. Simultaneously the relevant residence permit of the seller is revoked.

PROCEDURE

Step 1:           

Application for an entry visa for the Greek territory at the consulate authority of the applicant’s country of origin.

Step 2:           

Purchase of the property or entry into lease/ timeshare agreement and collection of the required supporting documentation.

Step 3:

Submission of the documents to the relevant authority and payment of the application fee amounting to € 2016. For family members above 18 years old the fee is 166 euros.

It is worth noting that the applicant is not required to submit the documents in person. As such, the filing of the application may be effected through a power of attorney. However, the applicant must enter the country in order to assign his representation to a lawyer, before the expiry of the relevant entry visa.

The applicant shall however need to provide his/ her fingerprints. They may effect this, either at the time of submission of the file or at a later appointment.

Step 4:           

Receipt of a document confirming submission of the application. The said document is valid for one year. The applicant may use it as temporary permit until the issuance of the final permit. This document will allow the applicant to travel freely to and from Greece. However it does not the applicant the right to travel to any other country within the Schengen area.

Step 5:           

Verification by the competent authorities of the application and documents submitted and issuance of the relevant decision/ residence permit.

ADVANTAGES

This type of residence permit allows you to:

  1. Stay in Greece continuously for the entire duration of the residence permit.
  2. Have access to public health and education, in the same terms and conditions as Greek citizens.
  3. Travel freely within the Schengen area, without a visa. The stay in the said countries must not exceed 90 days per six- month period. It also provides a right to multiple entries, without it being required to enter the Schengen area through Greece.
  4. Lease the real estate property or properties acquired in Greece and receive rent.
  5. Renew the residence permit as many times as the applicant wishes (so long as the conditions required by the Law remain fulfilled) for 5- year periods.
  6. Enter into the regimes for long- term residency or acquire the citizenship provided that the specific conditions required by law for accessing those regimes are fulfilled in addition.

Absences from Greece do not impede the possibility to renew of the residence permit.

FOR ANY FURTHER INFORMATION AND/ OR CLARIFICATION PLEASE FEEL FREE TO CONTACT US

*This document does not amount to professional legal advice as it is only intended for information purposes. 

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RESIDENCE PERMITS FOR OWNERS OF REAL ESTATE IN GREECE 2018

Law 4251of 2014, also referred to as the Immigration and Social Integration Code, (as amended and hereinafter referred to as the “Law”), provides the opportunity to non- European Union nationals to obtain a permanent residence permit by investing in real estate in Greece.

THE INVESTOR’S PERMANENT RESIDENCE PERMIT

According to the provisions of the Law, a citizen of a third country (i.e. non EU- national), having entered in Greece legally through any type of entry visa or already residing in Greece legally, is entitled to apply for a residence permit which is valid for 5 years in Greece, if:

 


 

1. THE SAID PERSON HOLDS EITHER PERSONALLY OR THROUGH A CORPORATE ENTITY THE SHARES OF WHICH ARE FULLY OWNED BY HIM/ HER, IN FULL OWNERSHIP AND POS-SESSION, REAL ESTATE IN GREECE, WITH THE VALUE OF THE PROPERTY AMOUNTING TO AT LEAST €250 000.

  • The terms “value of the property” refer to the value mentioned in the sale contract (i.e. it is not a reference to the fair market value of the property).
  • The property may consist of several real estate properties the total value of which must be equal to or exceed €250 000.
  • In case of co- ownership of the property, the residence permit is granted only if the value of each percentage of ownership of each co- owner amounts to €250 000.
  • In case of co- ownership between spouses the residence permit is granted only if the property is owned jointly.

OR

2. THE SAID PERSON HAS ENTERED INTO A TIMESHARE AGREEMENT OR A LEASE FOR HOTEL

ACCOMMODATIONS OR FURNISHED TOURISTIC RESIDENCES IN A COMBINED TOURIST FA-

CILITY IN GREECE, FOR A DURATION OF AT LEAST 10 YEARS, IN AN AMOUNT NOT LESS

THAN 250 000 €.

  • The amount of the lease must be paid upfront, upon the execution of the relevant agreement.

The holder of an investor’s permanent residence permit, may be accompanied by the members of his/ her family, to which a personal residence permit may be granted upon filing a relevant application. The residence permit of the said family members expires simultaneously with the residence permit of the sponsor.

The following persons are considered to be family members for the purposes of the foregoing:

  • The spouse
  • The direct descendants of the spouses or of either one of them, who are aged under 21 years old
  • The direct ascendants of the spouses

 

DURATION OF THE INVESTOR’S PERMANENT RESIDENCE PERMIT

The residence permit is granted for 5 years and may be renewed upon relevant application for another five- year periods for as long as the property remains under the ownership and possession of the applicant or the lease agreements remains in force and provided that all the relevant conditions required by law are fulfilled.

The sale of the property during the validity period of the residence permit to another non- EU citizen provides to the new buyer the right to be granted a residence permit along with the simultaneous revocation of the residence permit of the seller.

 

PROCEDURE

Step 1:

Application for an entry visa for the Greek territory at the consulate authority of the applicant’s country of origin (where applicable).

Step 2:

Purchase of the property or entry into lease/ timeshare agreement and collection of the required supporting documentation.

Step 3:

Submission of the documents to the relevant authority and payment of the application fee amounting to € 2016.

It is worth noting that the applicant is not required to submit the documents in person, and thus the filing of the application may be effected through a power of attorney, provided that the applicant has entered the country in order to assign his representation to a lawyer, before the expiry of the relevant entry visa.

Step 4:

Receipt of a document confirming submission of the application. The said document is valid for one year and may be used as temporary permit until the issuance of the final permit. This document will allow the applicant to travel freely to and from Greece, without however granting the applicant the right to travel to any other country within the Schengen area.

Step 5:

Verification by the competent authorities of the application and documents submitted and issuance of the relevant decision/ residence permit.

 

ADVANTAGES

  • Possibility to stay in Greece continuously for the entire duration of the residence permit and to have access to public health and education, in the same terms and conditions as Greek citizens.
  • Possibility to travel freely within the Schengen area, without a visa, provided that the stay in the said countries does not exceed 90 days per six-month period, with a right to multiple entries, without it being required to enter the Schengen area through Greece.
  • Possibility to lease the real estate property or properties acquired in Greece and receive rent.
  • Possibility to renew the residence permit as many times as the applicant wishes (so long as the conditions required by the Law remain fulfilled) for 5-year periods.
  • Absences from Greece do not impede the possibility for renewal of the residence permit.
  • Possibility to enter into the regimes for long-term residency or acquire the citizenship provided that the specific conditions required by law for accessing those regimes are fulfilled in addition.

 

December 2018

*This document does not amount to professional legal advice as it is only intended for information purposes.

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RESIDENCE PERMITS FOR INVESTORS, ENTREPRNEURS AND FINANCIALLY INDEPENDENT PERSONS

1. INVESTMENT IN IMMOVABLE PROPERTY : THE “INVESTOR’S PERMANENT RESIDENCE PERMIT”

WHO CAN APPLY?

1- A person holding either personally or through a corporate entity the shares of which are fully owned by him/ her, in full ownership and possession, real estate in Greece, with the value of the property amounting to at least €250 000.

OR

2- A person having entered into a timeshare agreement or a lease for hotel accommodations or furnished touristic residences in a combined tourist facility in Greece, for a duration of at least 10 years, in an amount not less than €250 000.

The holder of an” investor’s permanent residence permit”, may be accompanied by the members of his/ her family, to which a personal residence permit may be granted upon filing a relevant application and which expires simultaneously with the residence permit of the sponsor.

The following persons are considered to be family members for the purposes of the foregoing:

  • The spouse
  • The direct descendants of the spouses or of either one of them, who are aged under 21 years old
  • The direct ascendants of the spouses

Duration of the residence permit:

The residence permit is granted for 5 years and may be renewed upon relevant application for further five- year periods for as long as the property remains under the ownership and possession of the applicant or the lease agreements remains in force and provided that all the relevant conditions required by law are fulfilled.

The sale of the property during the validity period of the residence permit to another non- EU citizen provides to the new buyer the right to be granted a residence permit along with the simultaneous revocation of the residence permit of the seller.

Access to labour market: this type of residence permit does not provide access to labour market

 


 

2. FINANCIALLY INDEPENDENT PERSONS

Who can apply?

Non- EU citizens having adequate resources at a level of steady annual income for the coverage of their living expenses may apply for a 2- year residence permit.

Such persons may be accompanied by members of their families to whom a personal residence permit is granted.

Sufficient Income:

The condition for sufficient income must exist for each member of the family. The minimum income is 2000 euros/ month and in case the person is accompanied by his family, this amount is increased by 20% for the spouse and 15% for each child.

The amount of the income may be proved by pension abroad, bank account or other proof that the person has its own sufficient income, of legal origin, to cover its expenses without being employed or exercise an independent economic activity in Greece.

Persons entitled to receive a pension from a Greek Institution of Principal Insurance may renew their residence permit, independently of the amount of the pension.

Duration of the residence permit:

The residence permit for financially independent persons is issued for 2 years and may be renewed.

Access to labour market: this type of residence permit does not allow access to the labour market.

 


 

3. SPECIAL PURPOSE RESIDENCE PERMIT FOR MEMBERS OF BOARDS OF DIRECTORS, SHARE- HOLDERS, MANAGERS, LEGAL REPRESENTATIVES AND SENIOR MANAGING OFFICERS OF GREEK COMPANIES AS WELL AS SUBSIDIARIES AND BRANCHES OF FOREIGN COMPANIES

Who can apply?

  • members of boards of directors,
  • shareholders,
  • managers,
  • legal representatives and
  • senior executives

of Greek corporate entities as well as subsidiaries and branches of foreign companies.

The aforementioned persons may be accompanied by the members of their family, to whom a permit for family reunification may be granted.

Conditions:

  • The company/ branch/ subsidiary is legally exercising a business activity in Greece.
  • Τhe Greek company/ business employs at least 25 persons.

Exception:

  • The requirement to employ at least 25 persons does not apply in case of members of boards of directors, shareholders, managers, legal representatives and senior executives of subsidiaries and branches of foreign companies legally exercising a business activity in Greece.

Duration of the residence permit:

This type of residence permit is issued for 2 years or for a period equal to the expected duration of the applicant’s stay in Greece and is renewed every three years.

Access to labour market: the exercise of a specific profession is allowed.

 


 

ABSENCES FROM GREECE

In relation to persons having obtained a residence permit through investment in immovable property or persons who are financially independent, the law provides that periods of absence from Greece do not impede the renewal of the permit.

For all other residence permits mentioned hereinabove, the general provisions of the law apply, which provide that the validity of the residence permit, is not affected by temporary absences which do not exceed six months per year or longer absences in case of military service, or other serious reasons, such as pregnancy, motherhood, serious illness, studies or professional training in another member state or third country.

 


 

OUR SERVICES

Our Firm provides legal advice and assistance in matters concerning the application by foreigners for residence permits.

December 2018

 

*This document does not amount to professional legal advice as it is only intended for information purposes.

 

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Deputy Ministry of Shipping – Cyprus

In recent years, efforts have been made to upgrade and further develop the maritime industry of Cyprus.

When the Deputy Ministry of Shipping begun its operation, 168 companies were registered under the Cyprus tonnage tax system while today it has risen up to 191 companies in total.

The Deputy Minister of Shipping, Ms. Natasa Pilides stated that attempts are being made to simplify the procedures and modernize legislation so as to make Cyprus more competitive as a Register and as a maritime cluster. She also highlighted that attempts are being made to digitalize and modernize the Cyprus systems in order to make the Cyprus Registry even more attractive.

The budget of the Deputy Ministry for the year 2019 is 9.8 million euro compared to 8.1 million euros for the year 2018, i.e. an increase of 1.7 million euros. This is due to the large increase in the budget expenditure growth which is mainly because of the commercial shipping promotion and development activities.

The Deputy Ministry’s revenue for the year 2018 is estimated around 12 million euro while the indirect incomes of the maritime industry is estimated at 800 million euros which amounts to 7% of the GDP of the island. According to Ms. Pilidou, there are currently around 1100 seagoing ships and 600-700 small vessels under the Cypriot flag.

Based on these facts it is evident that the maritime industry of Cyprus is gradually evolving. The shipping fleet of Cyprus is the 10th largest worldwide and has 25% of the whole EU fleet. By continuously updating its services and striving for perfection in the field of shipping it will not be a surprise if Cyprus conquers the top in the near future.