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Cyprus Citizenship by Investment

Posted on: 9/28/2017 6:30:08 AM under General News 

Cyprus is an attractive location for the development of entrepreneurship and a distribution hub and gateway to investment in the European Union, Asia and Africa.

The natural beauty of Cyprus, the local hospitality and the warm climate fused with the very attractive business and tax regime, constitute Cyprus as one of the advantageous jurisdictions for business people.

Ensure the Cyprus citizenship fast, easy and enjoy all the benefits of EU passport.

Once the Cyprus passport is acquired, everyone has the option not to permanently reside in Cyprus, thus not becoming a tax resident.

 Advantages of Cyprus Citizenship

  • One of the faster Citizenship program in Europe.
  • Citizenship based on investment without any element of donation.
  • It provides all the rights of a European citizen including work, study and travel everywhere in Europe.
  • Tax residency based solely on number of days stays in Cyprus each year (183 days).
  • Dual citizenship is permitted.
  • Investment can be disposed after a three (3) years period.



 Cyprus for business

  • EU member
  • International Business Center with high level professional services
  • Attractive banking system
  • Low cost setting up and maintain business substance

 Cyprus for residency

  • Low crime rate
  • Excellent Mediterranean weather
  • High standard schools and university
  • Modern infrastructure of marinas and airports


Citizenship by investments Option Guide

1. Investment in immovable Property and infrastructure projects.

  • It refers to residential or commercial or development of property.


2. Acquisition or incorporation or participation in Cyprus Companies.

  • Investor can purchase incorporate or participate in companies which have physical activities in Cyprus.


3. Investment in alternative investment funds, financial assets or Cypriot Businesses.

  • It is financial assets such as bonds, debentures of Cypriot business or organisation which is licensed by Cysec (Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission).


4. Combination of the above options.

  • It can be investment in any of the 3 option above.






Cypriot passport ranks 13th on global power scale

Posted on: 1/3/2017 7:24:47 AM under General News 

The Cypriot passport ranks among the strongest in the world, as holders are able to travel to 146 countries without a visa.

According to the updated Passport Index, Cyprus gets a Passport Power Rank of 13, and an Individual Power Rank of 36 globally.

Its Global Mobility Score (for visa-free travel) of 146 ranks it above such countries as Lichtenstein, Monaco and Brazil.

The German passport scores the highest, as its holders can visit 158 countries visa-free. Sweden, Finland and France ranked 2nd, 3rd and 4th, respectively.

The United Kingdom has a Global Mobility Score of 156, the United States 155, and the Russian Federation 104.

Greece has a Passport Power Rank of 7, with a Global Mobility Score of 152.


Major gas players in Cyprus

Posted on: 1/3/2017 7:22:08 AM under General News 

Block 10 awarded to ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Cyprus (Offshore) Limited / Qatar Petroleum International Upstream OPC raise prospects for more gas findings and adds an important strategic partner to Cyprus’ energy policy.

"Both ExxonMobil and Qatar presence in Cyprus is definitely positive for Cyprus but their role in a Cyprus problem settlement should not be over exaggerated.

Exxon is no stranger to dealing with inconveniences like the one in Cyprus and has proved that can work around much harder situations form Cyprus problem.

ExxonMobil/ Qatar were chosen for negotiations on the terms and provisions of the contracts for Block 10 over Norwegian state company Statoil and Europeans giants,  Italy’s Eni and the France’s Total that bid as a consortium.

Block 10 resembles Egyptian Zohr were Eni announced last year that it holds an estimated 30 trillion cubic feet (tcf), equivalent to 5.5 billion barrels of oil.

Exxon, would definitely like to make a big discovery like Zohr that it could use to replace its diminishing proven reserves in order to maintain the value of the company, former Executive President of Cyprus National Hydrocarbon Company.

Meanwhile government officials denied that the nomination of ExxonMobil boss Rex Tillerson for US Secretary of State had anything to do with the decision

For Block 6 Nicosia will begin negotiations with the Eni Cyprus Limited / Total E&P Cyprus B.V. consortium (the only bidder). For Block 8 the government chose to negotiate with Eni Cyprus over Capricorn, a consortium made out from Cairn Energy PLC and Israeli Delek and Avner.

These three companies are important energy players and could develop findings in Cyprus if they choose to do so. Cyprus should be really happy to have them.

If negotiations are successful, and provided that the agreed contract per individual block is approved by the cabinet, Hydrocarbon Exploration Licenses shall be granted. Otherwise, the runner-up applicants will be invited for negotiations.

The total signature bonus could reach €100 million.

Almost four years ago the Eni-Kogas venture was granted the licenses for the exploration of blocks 2, 3 and 9 for signature bonus of €150m and blocks 10 and 11 were signed with Total for €24m.


Cyprus to sign first agreement with EFSI

Posted on: 1/3/2017 7:16:38 AM under General News 

Cyprus will on Friday signits first agreement with the European Fund for Strategic Investments, also known as the Juncker Fund, aiming at encouraging lending to small and medium-sized enterprises in Cyprus.

European Investment Bank (EIB) officials told CNA the agreement, to be signed by the EIB President Werner Hoyer and RCB bank, provides for the provision of guarantees amounting to €10 million for SMEs funding.

Similar agreements will be signed with Bank of Cyprus (€40 million) in early 2017 as well as with that Cooperative Credit Institutions to be signed at a later stage.

The guarantees will be provided by the European Investment Fund’s InnovFin SMEguarantee facility. The EIF and EFSI will assume part of the risk, encouraging the provision of credit to SMEs in a time of strict regulatory requirements that reduce the banks` risk taking appetite.

Eligible lenders will be benefited from low interest’s rates, as part of the risk will be assumed by EIF and EFSI. Under the scheme`s regulations, the loans will be granted to SMEs which that seek to improve efficiency by investing in technology, such as IT systems.

Furthermore, the same sources told CNA that by the first half of 2017 Cyprus will sign an funding agreement with EFSI to finance an infrastructure project.

On Friday EIB and RCB bank will sign a loan agreement amounting to €40 million aiming to provide cheap loans to SMEs in the context of the EIB`s SME scheme with the provision of government guarantees from the Cypriot government.

November tourist arrivals up 14.9%

Posted on: 1/3/2017 7:11:25 AM under General News 

On the basis of the results of the Passengers Survey of the Cyprus Statistical Service, arrivals of tourists reached 124,192 in November 2016 compared to 108,093 in November 2015, recording an increase of 14.9%.

For the period of January November 2016 arrivals of tourists totaled 3,098,604 compared to 2,581,057 in the corresponding period of 2015, recording an increase of 20.1% and outnumbering the total arrivals ever recorded in Cyprus during the first eleven months of the year.

Tourist arrivals from the United Kingdom increased by 3.4% in November 2016 compared to November 2015 while an increase of 51.9% was recorded for tourists from Greece.

Increases were also recorded from other important tourist markets, such as Germany (51.9%), Israel (112.7%) and Poland (13.0%). Contrary to that, a decrease of 0.6% in tourist arrivals from Russia was recorded.

The United Kingdom and Russia constitute the main sources of tourism for Cyprus, with proportions of 34.9% and 14.2% respectively, while arrivals from Greece comprise 11.7% and from Germany 10.4% of total arrivals.

For a percentage of 68.2% of tourists, the purpose of their trip was holidays, for 15.2% visit to friends and relatives and for 16.4% business. Men comprise 53.8% of tourists and women 46.2%, whilst most of the tourists belonged to the age group of 20-44 years.


Shareholders approve Co-op's merger with 18 administered banks

Posted on: 1/3/2017 7:03:57 AM under General News 

An extraordinary shareholders general meeting of the Cooperative Central Bank (CCB) approved on Friday the lender's merger with the 18 separate cooperative saving banks (CSBs) it administers.

"The legal consolidation constitutes a natural development in the Co-op's restructuring and modernization procedure given the operational consolidation of the 18 CSBs and the important initiatives that have been undertaken with the transfer of their assets and staff to the CCB, the bank said.

The CCB, which received since 2013 almost €1.7bn in taxpayers money in capital injections, as part of Cyprus bailout agreement, and is as a result 99-per-cent government-owned, said that it expects that the completion of the merger will increase its value and improve corporate governance in the bank, allowing it to become "more transparent, competitive and attractive.

The CCB is working on completing its Cyprus Stock Exchange listing in 2017, before it begins with subsequent share issues to increase its capital and reduce the government's stake to 25 per cent. 

The legal consolidation will in no way affect customers (or) members of the Co-op while it is expected to give its efforts to further strengthen its balance sheet a boost.

The bank, which had €7.4bn in non-performing loans in September in a €12.3bn overall loan portfolio, posted last year an after-tax loss of €122.7m. In the first nine months of 2016 it posted a net profit of €62.1m.

The CCB said that the consolidation will allow the bank to better utilise its staff and increase job security.


Sixth consecutive quarter of GDP growth, at 2.9%

Posted on: 12/16/2016 3:49:56 AM under General News 

For the sixth consecutive quarter economic growth has been reported for Cyprus, with the third quarter of 2016 recording a growth rate of 2.9% according to the Cyprus Statistical Service.

Τhe GDP growth rate in real terms during the third quarter of 2016 is positive and estimated at +2.9% over the corresponding quarter of 2015. Based on seasonally and working day adjusted data, GDP growth rate in real terms is estimated at +2.9%.

The increase of the GDP growth rate is mainly attributed to the sectors: "Hotels and Restaurants”, "Professional, Scientific and Technical Activities”, "Retail and Wholesale Trade”, "Manufacturing”, "Construction” and "Transport”. Negative growth rates were recorded by the sectors: "Financial Service Activities” and Information and Communication”.


Oil Prices Increase On Global Producer Deal to Cut Crude Output

Posted on: 12/16/2016 3:45:22 AM under General News 

Oil prices shot to their highest levels since mid-2015 on Monday, December 12, after OPEC and other producers reached their first deal since 2001 to jointly reduce output in order to rein in oversupply and prop up markets, Reuters report.

Brent crude, the international benchmark for oil prices, soared to $57.89 per barrel in overnight trading between Sunday and Monday, the highest level since July 2015.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude also hit a July 2015 high of $54.51 a barrel.

Brent and WTI eased to $56.83 and $54.20 respectively by 0751 GMT, but were both still up over 4 percent from their last settlements.

With the deal signed after almost a year of arguing within the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and mistrust in the willingness of non-OPEC Russia to participate, focus is switching to compliance of the agreement.

"We believe that the observation of the OPEC-11 and non-OPEC 11 production cuts is required to sustainably support... oil prices to our 1H17 WTI price forecast of $55 a barrel," Goldman Sachs said.

"This forecast reflects an effective 1.0 million barrels per day (bpd) cut vs. the 1.6 million bpd announced cut and greater compliance to the announced cuts is therefore an upside risk to our forecasts."

Goldman Sachs forecast full compliance would be worth an extra $6 per barrel to its price forecast.

AB Bernstein said the agreed deal "amounts to an aggregate supply cut of 1.76 million barrels per day (bpd) from 24 countries which currently produce 52.6 million bpd, or 54 percent of world oil supply."

Bernstein said that "some of the non-OPEC supply cuts will come from natural decline, but most will come from self-imposed cuts."

Saudi Aramco has told U.S. and European customers it will reduce oil deliveries from January.

"The kingdom is targeting excess inventories, the lion's share of which sit in the United States," said Virendra Chauhan, oil analyst at Energy Aspects in Singapore. "Lower Saudi exports to the U.S. could also make the export arbitrage uneconomic."

OPEC plans to slash output by 1.2 million bpd from Jan. 1, with top exporter Saudi Arabia cutting around 486,000 bpd in a bid to end overproduction that has dogged markets for two years.

On Saturday, producers from outside OPEC agreed to reduce output by 558,000 bpd, short of the target of 600,000 bpd but still the largest contribution by non-OPEC ever.

From outside OPEC, Russia said it would gradually cut 300,000 bpd.

"Once cuts are implemented at the start of 2017, oil markets will shift from surplus into deficit. Given the cuts in production announced by OPEC, we expect that markets will move into a 0.8 million bpd deficit in 1H17," AB Bernstein said.

But some analysts expect producers, drawn by higher oil prices, to increase output again.

"There are too many moving parts for OPEC’s new policy to be sustainable in the long term. The strategy is bound to overshoot, in our view leading to lower prices in the second half of next year," Barclays said in a note on Monday.

It forecast prices would fall from around $60 a barrel in the second quarter to about $52 in the fourth quarter next year.


UK Government Facing New Brexit Court Case

Posted on: 12/16/2016 3:11:13 AM under General News 

Opponents to Britain leaving the European Union will launch a fresh legal action this week, which could further hamper Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit plans, The Sunday Times reports.

The newspaper said campaigners will write to the UK government on Monday saying they are taking it to the High Court in an effort to keep Britain in the single market.

It said the claimants will seek a judicial review in an attempt to give lawmakers a new power of veto over the terms on which Britain leaves the EU.

They argue the government "has no mandate” to withdraw from the single market because it was not on the referendum ballot paper on June 23 and was not part of the ruling Conservative Party's manifesto for the 2015 general election.

May has said she wants to invoke Article 50 of the EU's Lisbon Treaty by the end of March, kicking off up to two years of exit negotiations.

However the High Court ruled last month that Article 50 cannot be triggered without parliament's assent. That ruling is being challenged by the government in Britain's Supreme Court.

The Sunday Times said the new court case hinges on whether the government would also have to trigger another legal measure — Article 127 of the European Economic Area agreement — in order to quit the single market.

It said ministers argue Britain automatically exits the single market when it quits the EU. But, it said if the claimants win the new case, the government would have to gain the approval of lawmakers.

A group of British and Irish lawyers are also seeking to challenge Britain's decision to leave the EU in the Irish High Court to try to establish if Brexit can be reversed once divorce talks have been triggered.

Pro-Brexit critics have cast the legal battles as an attempt by a pro-EU establishment to thwart the result of the referendum, when Britons voted by 52-48 percent to leave the EU.


Limassol Casino to Raise the Bar for Casinos Worldwide

Posted on: 12/16/2016 3:06:32 AM under General News 

The Limassol casino intends to raise the bar for casinos worldwide, according to the Melco-Hard Rock consortium, the winning bidder of the Republic of Cyprus first casino resort, in-Cyprus reports.

The aim is to "establish a new standard for integrated casino resorts not only in Europe, but worldwide, Melco-Hard Rock consortium was cited as saying by Asian Gaming Brief (Agb).


"The project presents the opportunity to introduce the Melco brand to Europe for the first time, while enhancing Hard Rocks position as the premier music and entertainment-based hospitality company, the Macau-US consortium.


The consortium was attracted to Limassol because the location offers a stable and regulated market, together with the chance to capture the growing number of Asian tourists travelling to Europe on vacation, Agb says.


Nevertheless, the main target group would be from the region.

"Our studies and analysis indicate that Cyprus location and its proximity to important markets such as Israel and the Middle East is ideal for the project.

Agb estimates that the integrated casino resort will be going after the mass and premium mass (upmarket) players from each target country. This group will make up the majority of gaming and non-gaming revenues, and will offer stability and sustainability.


"The European market will rely more on mass and premium mass players, Michael Zhu, VP of operations planning and analysis at The Innovation Group, was cited as saying.

At the same time, Harmen Brenninkmeijer, managing partner at Dynamic Partners, argued that Melco should also be able to draw VIP players to the Cyprus casino.


Agb noted the Limassol casino is aiming to attract new tourists to the island and combat seasonality. It makes a reference to the already-thriving gambling industry in northern Cyprus, where there are around 30 casinos and a growing number of top-class venues.


"The resort will bring quality to the islands casino industry, and the existing casinos should look to upgrade their products and services to capitalise on the potential it will bring, Umit Or, managing director of Kaya Holdings.


Cyprus airports beat the 1mil passenger threshold in October

Posted on: 11/14/2016 8:12:38 AM under General News 

For the first time in their history, Cyprus airports reported passenger traffic above one million during the month of October, according to a Hermes Airports press release.

From the 1stto the 31stof October 2016, 738,275 passengers made their way through the Larnaca International Airport, while during the same period, 270,983 passengers used the Paphos International Airport.

In total, 1,009,258 passengers made their way through both airports, an increase of 31.5% compared to the same period last year.

The countries that contributed the largest increase in passenger traffic during October were Russia, Greece, the United Kingdom, Israel, Switzerland and the Ukraine.

It is particularly encouraging that this year’s lift in passenger traffic is continuing into the months that traditionally have lower traffic. This trend appears likely to continue during the winter months, something which shows that it’s possible to beat seasonality and promote Cyprus as a year-round destination.


EBRD upgrades Cyprus growth forecast

Posted on: 11/14/2016 8:06:46 AM under General News 

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has upgraded its forecast for the growth of Cyprus economy in 2016 by 1 percentage point, to 2.7% from 1.7% in May 2016. In its forecasts for November 2016, the Bank also upgrades its forecast for GDP growth in 2017 by 0.2% to 2.2%.

The upgrade of the forecast from the EBRD comes after the upgrade of the forecast of the International Monetary Fund for Cyprus last month, which predicts GDP growth of 2.8% for 2016 and 2.2% for 2017.

In relation to Cyprus, EBRD, notes that growth accelerated in the first half of 2016 to 2.7 percent year-on-year, and consumer confidence has risen sharply, exceeding the EU average in recent months and supporting strong private consumption growth.

The more dynamic economy had positive spillovers on the labour market, as the unemployment rate has begun to fall, reaching 12.0 per cent in mid-2016 compared with the 2014 peak of 16.3 per cent.

Fiscal performance has also been strong, with the fiscal deficit falling to just 1 per cent of GDP in 2015.

Nevertheless, it is noted that general government debt is still high, exceeding 100 per cent of GDP at the end of 2015. Overall growth in 2016 is likely to be around 2.7 per cent, moderating somewhat to 2.2 per cent in 2017, as high levels of public and private debt, and a large overhang of non-performing loans in the banking sector, continue to constrain growth.

EBRD predicts growth of 1.6% in 2016 for its area upgrading by 0.2% its forecast compared with May 2016. It also projects GDP growth of 2.5% in 2017.


Property sales up 32% October 2016, Limassol first in sales at 44%

Posted on: 11/14/2016 8:04:29 AM under General News 

Property sales increased by 37% in October 2016, compared to the same month last year, a continuation of the trend of increasing sales mostly since February of the current year.

Sales during the period January-October 2016 recorded an increase of 32% (3,993 last year, 5,278 this year).

This is according to data publicized by the Land Registry, which show that sales documents submitted to the District Land Registry offices reached 634 in October 2016 compared to 463 in October 2015, an increase of 37%. During the previous two months, August and September, the increase in sales had reached 50% and 44% respectively.

By district, the largest increase in sales in October 2016 (63%) was recorded in Limassol. Famagusta follows at 62%, Larnaca 28%, Nicosia 25% and Paphos at 8%.

Limassol also recorded the largest increase (44%) for the period January-October 2016 compared to the same period last year, followed by Famagusta at 33%.

Sales to foreign buyers recorded an increase of 45% in October (111 last year, 161 this years), with most sales having been conducted in Limassol, reaching 68. Paphos follows with 43, Larnaca 30, then Nicosia and Famagusta with 10 each

What gas price earns Cyprus 600 million a year?

Posted on: 11/14/2016 7:59:27 AM under General News 

This week the finance minister, Harris Georgiades, told parliament that government income from natural gas could reach €500-€600 million per year in around 12 years time.

As part of the Aphrodite contract, government revenue will start to flow after the energy companies have recouped their costs. This is one reason why Georgiades mentioned 12 years from now, with the hope that production starts in 2020.

Total general government revenue in 2015 was €6.9bn. The gas revenue could therefore add around 10% more to the annual budget. This large increase in revenue is also why the finance minister has sensibly pushed for some hard rules about how the money is spent.

The figures cited by the finance minister prompted a few people to ask me if the number was accurate. The short answer is yes, but only if gas prices rise to a level at which exports to Egypt become viable.

The current LNG spot price (the price if bought today) on the European market is around $4.5 per million British thermal units (mmbtu). Europe is the most likely market for gas sent to Egypt.

This is because, after the massive Zohr find, the country will have more than enough of its own supply. BG (now owned by Shell) is both a partner in Aphrodite and has the idle LNG plant in Idku, therefore using this plant for export will make the most sense.

My own number-crunching, which includes the cost of building a pipeline to Egypt, and then liquefying it at a ready-made LNG plant, suggests that spot prices would have to reach just over $10/mmbtu for exports to Egypt to be viable. For exports by pipeline to Turkey, the viability threshold comes in at a much lower $4/mmbtu.

As an aside, one assumption I make is that 75% of the construction cost of the Idku LNG plant, built in 2001, has been depreciated before production starts. If anyone knows what the industry standard is for depreciation of big industrial works, I would love to hear from them.

An end-market price of $10/mmbtu is pretty close to the figure that energy consultant and fellow commentator, Charles Ellinas, has calculated, using different methods.

It also happens to be the price at which the government would earn about $600m per year in revenues.

In other words, the revenue will only come if gas prices more than double from where they are today. Moreover, with renewable energy prices falling, a doubling of gas prices is currently a long bet.


2016 the Best Year for Tourism in Cyprus

Posted on: 11/14/2016 7:49:44 AM under General News 

This year will be the best year as regards tourist arrivals and revenue from tourism in the history of Cyprus, Acting Director General of the Cyprus Tourism Organisation (CTO) Annita Demetriadou has stressed.

Speaking at a press conference on the occasion of the World Tourism Day, celebrated every year on the 27th of September, she said that according to CTO`s estimations, 2016 will be the year during which more than three million tourists will have visited the island, while revenue from tourism is also expected to increase by more than 13.7% compared to last year, surpassing 2.3 billion euro.

"I would like to underline that all months in 2016, for which we have statistical data, have shown an increase, and the eight months (January – August) were the best eight months ever recorded as regards tourist arrivals”, she pointed out.

She also said that the increase in the first eight months of 2016 stands at 19.2% compared to last year, or 2.2 million tourists in real numbers, the Cyprus News Agency reports.

The past four months (May – August 2016) are considered as record months, since they are the most successful ones recorded in the history of tourist arrivals in Cyprus. July 2016 saw the most tourist arrivals.

Demetriadou described as excellent the results of the last winter season (November 2015- March 2016) which showed an increase of 33%.

The CTO is focusing its efforts on attracting tourists from other markets such as Israel, Iran, the Golf countries, even China and India. Its aim is to further improve Cyprus` tourism product and keep prices stable.


Oil breaks above $50 a barrel as investors warm to OPEC deal

Posted on: 11/14/2016 7:38:08 AM under General News 

Oil rose to its highest since August above $50 a barrel on Monday, supported by a planned production cut by exporter club OPEC, although analysts cautioned the stubbornness of the existing supply overhang could temper a longer-lasting rally.

December Brent crude futures were last up 40 cents at $50.59 a barrel by 1200 GMT, off a session low of $49.74, while U.S. crude futures rose 42 cents to $48.66 a barrel, above the days low at $47.78.

Europes and Asias largest markets, Germany and China, are both shut for public holidays on Monday, limiting trade.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries said last week it would cut output to between 32.5 million barrels per day (bpd) and 33.0 million bpd from about 33.5 million bpd, with details to be finalized at its policy meeting in November.

Initial skepticism last week over the effectiveness of the deal in eroding the global surplus gave way to a wave of short-covering that drove the price above $50 a barrel for the first time since late August on Monday.

Aside from doubts over OPEC implementing a final production-cutting deal, those bearish in the market also note the rise in oil output from member countries to a multi-year high in recent months, including exports from Iran that at 2.8 million bpd are close to their 2011 pre-sanctions peak.

OPEC oil output is likely to reach 33.60 million bpd in September from a revised 33.53 million bpd in August, its highest in recent history, a Reuters survey found on Friday.

"Sentiment has been slightly dented by a Reuters survey Friday, showing that despite agreeing to cut production OPEC pumped crude in record amounts through September, said Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst at brokerage OANDA in Singapore.

"OPEC has created its own Q4 risk to oil prices. In raising expectations of a November deal to cut production, it also risks a steep price decline should it fail to achieve its goal of cutting output back to less than 33 million bpd, Barclays said in a note to clients.

Despite that, the bank said it did not expect a repeat of the price crash seen late last year after a rally earlier in 2015, citing an improving Asian economic growth outlook, falling oil supplies and rising investor interest in oil markets as support factors. 


Assessing the casino wider impact

Posted on: 11/14/2016 7:36:03 AM under General News 

So, at long last, out of the 12 initially interested international casino operators, we were left with only one! The reason was attributed mainly to the lack of sizeable plots suitable for the purpose, with land owners asking such high prices that they exceeded the cost of the building project. A major blunder was made by our MPs who excluded government land for the purpose, and thus the state has lost out on having a hefty annual rental income, whereas the ever-dynamic Limassol, which always acts as a team, secured the only tender at the Zakaki village area.

The Zakaki plot is located in the wider Phassouri plantation which, set on the western periphery of Limassol, has many advantages, not only because it is part of the wider city boundary, but also by offering good transportation access, an almost direct connection with the motorway, next to the port and to the local My Mall shopping complex, as well as proximate to the local water park and the lovely Ladies Mile beach.

The project, based on the required specifications and subject to the initial announcement by the sole bidder, will include a casino resort which will host a 5-star hotel, a conference hall with a capacity to hold 1,500-2,000 people, as well as restaurants, entertainment areas, and so forth.

Meanwhile, we are informed that it will be the only "Las Vegas” type of casino in Europe, and is expected to create approximately 4,000 new jobs (with all the related services) and which will place the island on the gamblers’ and entertainment-seekers’ map.

The project, taking into consideration the nearby facilities such as the golf course and the houses, of approximately 500 units, to be developed there, together with the water park and related facilities, as well as an attractive wooded environment cannot but be a plus.

The endeavour, which is expected to cost around €0.5 billion, will also create a new "business” community for Limassol, just as the Russian community and other offshore enterprises already provided for the city. In the meantime, we expect that until the project is developed, estimated to take three to four years, the operator will be allowed to set up a temporary casino, which, we suspect will be at an existing entertainment project in eastern Limassol which is of a large size, open plan and quite attractive. We suspect it is the Monte Caputo night spot.

This Government has bent over backwards to provide all sorts of planning relaxations (given that it has concluded real estate development is one of the two factors that will help the Cyprus economy (the other is tourism). Hence, the casino project is expected to attract, in addition to the ordinary tourists, natives from the main gambling ‘nations’, which include Israelis, Greeks and even Chinese, who have shown a positive preference for the island, especially with respect to the visa-passports scheme. To this end, the direct air routes between Cyprus and China, provided by the new Cobalt airline will help. Cruises might also benefit from this venture, albeit not to as great an extent, as well as the Marina projects.

We will then experience a transformation of the area from its present low-cost status to that of up-and-coming private real estate, albeit that it might take a short wait. Well done, Limassol.


150 million triple towers to be constructed in Limassol

Posted on: 11/14/2016 7:32:42 AM under General News 

A large-scale development which includes stores, offices, apartments, a spa-gym for residents, three pools and parking space will take place on Amathountos Street in Limassol.

Three high-rise apartment buildings will be constructed on the beach front of Limassol, with the height of the buildings reaching 160 meters. Specifically, the development plans three 37-storey towers, with 297 apartments, 10,000 sq. m. of office space, 1,800 sq. m. of stores and 1508 underground and overground parking spaces. The total area the development will cover will be 58,500 sq.m.

The cost of the development is estimated at €150 million, with construction set to begin in January 2017, and is to be completed in seven years.


GDP Growth Rate Estimated at +2.9% in Q2 2016

Posted on: 10/10/2016 5:30:43 AM under General News 

According to the Flash Estimate compiled by the Statistical Service of Cyprus, the GDP growth rate in real terms during the second quarter of 2016 is positive and is estimated at +2.9% over the corresponding quarter of 2015.

Based on seasonally and working day adjusted data, GDP growth rate in real terms is estimated at +2.7%.

The increase of the GDP growth rate is mainly attributed to the sectors: Hotels and Restaurants, Professional, Scientific and Technical Activities, Retail and Wholesale Trade, Manufacturing, Construction and Transport.

Negative growth rates were recorded by the Financial Service Activities.


Income Tax in Cyprus


The favorable provisions of the Cyprus tax legislation as well as the wide network of double taxation treaties make the Cyprus holding company ideal for international tax planning purposes. The main advantages of the Cyprus tax system are summarized below:

·       12.5% uniform corporate tax on trading profits.

·       Dividend income received from abroad is exempt (subject to conditions).

·       No thin capitalization rules.

·       Capital gains from the sale of immovable property situated outside Cyprus is tax exempt.

·       Taxable losses carried forward indefinitely.

·       Capital gains on sale of qualified Securities: 100% exemption.

·       No withholding tax on outward payments (Dividends-Interest-Royalties) to non Cyprus tax residents (companies or individuals).

·       Foreign Permanent Establishment profits exempt (subject to conditions).

·       Tax free corporate re-domiciliation permitted.

·       Possibility for establishing an SE (European Company).

·       Applicability of all EU directives.

·       Advance ruling practice exists.

·       Extensive Double Tax Treaty network.


Cyprus casino contenders down to one

Posted on: 10/10/2016 5:29:14 AM under General News 

Just one contender is left in the bid for a casino license in Cyprus, with "NagaCorp Ltd,” one of just two remaining interested parties, on Wednesday announcing its steering committee for the purpose would not be participating in the next stage of the bid.

With several big names quitting the competition for various reasons only "Naga” and "Melco-Hard Rock Resort Cyprus Consortium” had been left, with the deadline for the submission of their final proposal being October 5.

The "Melco” consortium is proposing that their casino be developed in land next to the Limassol Mall, while "Naga” had proposed that their casino is built along the Larnaca-Dhekelia road.

The Melco-Hard Rock Resort Cyprus Consortium is comprised of the companies Melco International Development, Hard Rock International, and the Cypriot company Cyprus Phasouri, part of the CNS Group, which is active in the field of real estate, telecoms, dairy, agriculture, exports and mining. Melco International Development Ltd, which was founded in 1910 and was made part of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in 1927 is a company with a long history.

Today, Melco is a global investor in the entertainment sector, active in China, the Philippines, Cambodia and Russia. Through the companies Melco Crown Entertainment, Melco Crown Philippines and Summit Ascent, the company owns and operates facilities under the trade names "City of Dreams”, "Studio City”, "Altira” and "Tigre de Cristal”. In total, these companies own 4,500 hotel rooms, and employ more than 20,000 workers, with $4.8 billion in revenue in 2014. In 2015, the companies had won eight Forbes 5-Star awards.

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