Cyprus Country Profile

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Capital City

Largest City

Greek, Turkish
918.1 thousand

Life Expectancy
79.7 years
GDP (nominal)
$26.7 billion

Cost of Living
English Proficiency
Moderate (4/7)
Very comfortable (1/5)
Very Safe (2/7)
Average (3/5)
High (2/5)

Taxation Type: Residence-based

Sovereign Research's take:

Cyprus is part of the European Economic Area (EEA), allowing its citizens to live and work in any other EEA country, plus Switzerland. (The EEA consists of 27 European Union countries plus Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein.)
Cyprus is a unique place: it’s located at the crossroads of Europe, Asia and Africa. And for centuries, it’s been a coveted trophy for conquering nations.

Almost everyone on the island speaks English; the legacy of it being an English colony. So if you are looking for an English-speaking environment (and an amazing climate), Cyprus should suit you well. 

The country offers excellent education facilities, with several UK universities having campuses on the island.

Populated mostly by ethnic Greeks, Cyprus also boasts a substantial Turkish population.

Tension between the two groups led to outright conflict in 1974, and to the division of the island into two different countries – The Republic of Cyprus (Greek), and the unrecognized Northern Cyprus (Turkish).

We’re focusing on The Republic of Cyprus – a member of the European Union.

If you’ve been reading Sovereign Research for a while, you’ll know that we’re no fans of how the Cypriot government handled its 2012 banking crisis. Without warning, officials declared a bank holiday, froze depositors’ accounts, and severely restricted ATM withdrawals and wire transfers.

That example was the first countrywide bail-in – a process forcing bank depositors (and not the government) to pay for the stupid financial decisions made by their banks and their government. Consequently, we personally wouldn't hold any substantial amounts of money in Cyprus. 

At the same time, the country can be an amazing residency option. Its Golden Visa is an attractive option that gives you immediate permanent residency. Alternatively, you can choose another residency option that requires no investment at all.  

Up until 2020, Cyprus also offered a Citizenship By Investment program, but it was shut down due to allegations of corruption and pressure from Brussels.

In terms of its taxation, with a top tax rate of 35% on personal income, Cyprus does not look like a tax haven. Yet, Cyprus can be very tax efficient depending on your situation. The Cypriot government offers many tax breaks and exemptions for expats relocating to the island. 

Even if you end up spending more than six months per year on the ground (enough to make you a tax resident there), you will likely pay no taxes to Cyprus on your worldwide income. 

If island living and low (or no) taxes on your worldwide income sounds appealing, Cyprus could be an option..

Service Providers available in Cyprus in Sovereign Research's Rolodex:

  • Immigration (residency, citizenship)
  • Citizenship by Ancestry
Obtain access by signing up for Sovereign Confidential

Articles featuring Cyprus

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Obama invades Cyprus in order to NOT invade Syria

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Cyprus: Despite 16 months of capital controls, banks still pitifully capitalized

July 14, 2014 Istanbul, Turkey It’s been over a year since the banking system in Cyprus officially went bust. On Friday, March 15, 2013, practically everyone in the country went to bed thinking that everything was just fine. Many had probably gone to the bank that very day to do business, or logged on to […]

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Cyprus STILL has "an emergency situation". And capital controls

April 9, 2014 Santiago, Chile Imagine that your country and banking system are so broke that you have to receive approval from a special committee just to send your own money to your kids who are away at university… Crazy, right? But that’s exactly what’s going on in Cyprus. And it all happened overnight. Just […]

International Diversification Strategies

Yet another good sign: the ENTIRE board of the Bank of Cyprus forced to resign

September 25, 2014 Sovereign Valley Farm, Chile It was only 18-months ago that one of the brokest banking systems in the world became the first modern example of financial cannibalism. I’m sure you remember how it all went down in Cyprus last year… but I’ll review it anyhow because it just never gets old. For […]

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