Third country nationals and all companies of foreign interests that intend to register a company in Cyprus and employ third country nationals must obtain a residence and employment permit from the Civil Registry and Migration Department (CRMD).

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Some of the most important requirements they need to fulfill are the following:

1. The majority of the company’s shareholders should be foreign shareholders and in the case of shareholders whose ultimate owners are foreign companies, they should be declared in order to be approved by the CRMD;

2. In case where the percentage of foreign participation in the share capital of a company is equal or below fifty percent (50%) of the total share capital, this percentage should represent an amount equal or higher than €171.000.

3. The company must operate from self-contained offices in Cyprus, which should be located in suitable distinct premises, not part of private residence or another office, except form cases of companies that share lodging. Cases in which the nature of the work allows people to work from their home will be examined.

Eligible companies which fulfill the above conditions may employ third country nationals in the following positions:

1. Executive Directors
2. Middle Management Staff
3. Supportive Staff

Executive Directors

The term ‘Executive Directors’ includes third country nationals registered as:

(a) salary of at least €41.000,00;
(b) Consulting Directors or Partners (in the Registrar of Companies);
(c) General Managers of branches and subsidiary foreign companies; and
(d) Departmental Managers.

Middle-management staff, executive staff and any other key personnel

(a) the abovementioned staff includes Directors who are not considered to be Executive Directors as well as other Executive/Middle-management staff or other managerial, clerical or technical personnel with an annual salary ranging from €20.503 to €40.999. The amounts may be adjusted from time to time according to fluctuations in the salary index; and

(b) the maximum number of employees permitted in this category is 10. The CRMD has the discrete authority to decide on the employment of more than 10 people if justified, depending on each company’s operation data. In the case that the total maximum number is exceeded, the company should justify the necessity of the employment of third country nationals.

Supporting Staff

(a) all third country nationals employed in other professional, managerial, technical, clerical etc. positions in Cyprus that do not fall under the abovementioned categories (1) and (2), are classified in the remaining supporting staff; and

(b) companies are expected to employ Cypriots or European citizens for this category. In case that there are no available or suitable Cypriots or European citizens with the required qualifications, a company may employ third country nationals in positions of this category.