Cyprus is among the most significant business and investment centres in the EU and internationally. The considerable tax incentives together with the limited bureaucratic procedures attract entrepreneurs and investors from all over the world. Another major advantage of establishing a company in Cyprus is that the island maintains the financial privileges of a tax heaven destination while it follows all the relevant EU regulations. Furthermore, Cyprus benefits from all EU treaties, regulations, directives and freedom in capital movement as a full EU member-state.
The most popular choices of creating a company in Cyprus are tailor made and off the shelf company. A tailor made company is created from scratch. An off the shelf company refers to an existing company that has been adapted for particular purposes.
The main advantages of setting up a company in Cyprus:
- A business-friendly tax regime and double taxation agreement with more than 40 countries: Cyprus is a reliable jurisdiction and it is on the white list of OECD. Furthermore, Cyprus has adopted International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS). As it has been mentioned before, Cyprus offers considerable tax incentives. The corporate tax rate in Cyprus is 12.5%, one of the lowest in the EU. Apart from the favourable tax regime, intercompany dividends are not imposed on any taxation. Moreover, when a Cyprus company allocates shares to subsidiaries or one of the associated companies there is no tax liability. Cyprus has established double taxation treaties with 45 countries. Double taxation agreements denote that taxes on capital gains, royalties, interests and dividends are not paid in some cases.
- Limited bureaucratic procedures: Incorporating a company in Cyprus is not complicated. Before proceeding with the incorporation process, the name of the company must be approved by the Registrar of Companies so that to ensure that there are no companies with a similar name.
- Open a bank account for a Cyprus company: Opening a bank account for a Cyprus company is not complicated and it can be done almost immediately. The presence of company’s directors is not necessary. In case you want to open a bank account remotely then notarisation and legislation of documents of directors and shareholders of a Cyprus company are necessary.
Procedures and Documentation:
In Cyprus, a company is incorporated within approximately 10-18 business days. As it has been noted, the name of the company must be approved by the Registrar of Companies. This will take between 3- 6 business days. The following step is to register the company. The whole registration procedure will take between 5-8 business days. Note that in case the documents are not in English, then they should be translated, certified and apostilled.
- Each shareholder is obliged to submit a copy of his or her passport. Photographs, personal details and signatures must be visible.
- A document that indicates the residential address of each shareholder. Note that P.O. Boxes are not accepted as residential addresses.
- If the corporate body is a shareholder in the company, then it should be submitted a copy of the incorporation certificate and a copy of the certificate indicating the exact location of the company’s registered office. An oversea company can be a shareholder.
- Following the Cyprus Law, the company needs minimum one Director and a Company Secretary. The directors can be either natural persons or corporate entities.
- Each officer of the company must submit the following documents: A copy of the passport. Photograph, personal details and signature must be visible. A document that indicates the residential address of each officer. As, it has been clarified before, P.O. Box addresses are not accepted as residential addresses.The Directors must submit information about their professions. Moreover, the Directors should provide information whether they have been appointed as Directors in other companies. In this case, a simple “YES” or “NO” is enough.
- In case the officers of the company is another corporate entity, then each entity should submit a copy of the incorporation certificate and a copy of the certificate that indicates the exact location of company’s premises.
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