Relocation to Cyprus: what the Year of the Black Rabbit has brought to us

Commonly known as pink slip or according to the Cyprus migration laws – Visitor Visa (Temporary Permit) for one year without the right to work has become very difficult to get. Is it true? Let us see.

Cyprus has always been famous for foreigners flying in, opening a bank account, depositing EUR 5,000 to EUR 10,000 into the account – and easily obtaining the desired pink slip (Visitor Visa).

The main requirement for obtaining the Visitor status has always been a stable and confirmed foreign-source income. The income is:

  • pension,
  • deposits in a foreign bank account,
  • income from renting own real estate,
  • dividends,
  • interest on deposits or from a company in the Republic (with the confirmation by the Company accountant of not receiving a salary by virtue of office), excluding dividends,
  • salary from a foreign company in case of remote working,
  • other “passive”

Foreign nationals were allowed to live in the island with no right to work, but last year circumstances turned things around.

Sanctions made their impact and complicated the process of applying for a pink slip: one after another, banks started refusing to open accounts for foreigners without a European residence permit.

You can object that, even so, there were some cases of bank account opening. Yes, indeed, but they were rare and extreme cases.

The end of 2022 gave another surprise. Since January 2023, Cyprus has introduced new requirements that affected the financial side. As a result, certain changes to the list of the required documents for obtaining a visa were introduced.

Now, applicants need to:

  1. Provide a detailed statement from a Cyprus bank.
  2. Prove a foreign-source income of at least EUR 24,000 per year. In case of having any dependents, this amount is increased by 20% for spouses and 15% for children.
  3. Submit a certificate of no criminal record from the country of origin.
  4. Confirm that the applicant does not suffer from Hepatitis B, C, HIV, syphilis, as well as submit a chest x-ray for tuberculosis and medical certificate sealed by a medical specialist in Cyprus.
  5. At the time of applying for the pink slip renewal, the applicant should have at least EUR 6,000 in his/her account.

And don’t forget the need to provide a permanent rent contract or Cyprus property certificate, certificate of no criminal record from the country of origin and so on.

The cherry on top is the rule: Visitor Visa holders can no longer be sponsors for their parents, they can only be sponsors for their spouses and children.

The picture is, certainly, sad, but relocating continues regardless. We hope that the ministry will review this policy and ease some requirements.

For many of our fellow citizens living in Cyprus is an opportunity to combine work and leisure in a convenient format. Clear evidence of this fact is the growing number of Russian expats who spend most of the year in the island. Cyprus is a great place to live. The country lies a short distance from Asia and Africa, which offers a wealth of travel opportunities and makes it easy to get to any country of the world.

On top of that, Cyprus itself has a lot to offer: sandy beaches, a ski resort, shopping and entertainment centers, restaurants, bars, places of architectural and historical interest. Besides, the island has a very mild climate with winter temperatures never dropping below 10 degrees. Such state of affairs is definitely to the taste of Russian travellers.

Milena Saakyan

Business Development Manager

Korpus Prava (Cyprus)

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