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General Information about Cyprus

Location

Cyprus is situated in the eastern Mediterranean at the cross-roads of three continents - Europe, Asia and Africa. It covers an area of 9251 sq. km. It has a pleasant Mediterranean climate with dry, hot summers and mild winters.

Population

The population of Cyprus is about 770.000 with Greek - Cypriots representing approximately 78%, Turkish - Cypriots 18% and the remaining 4% representing other minorities.

Languages

Greek, Turkish and English are the official languages. English is spoken by most of the population and is widely used in commercial and government sectors.

Political Structure

Cyprus became an independent republic in 1960. The structure of government is similar to other western democracies where human rights, political freedom and private property are safeguarded.

Cyprus has a presidential system of government. The President is the Head of State and is elected for a five-year term. Executive power is in the hands of the Council of Ministers, the members of which are appointed by the President. The House of Representatives is the Island's legislative body and it consists of 56 elected members who serve for a five-year term. The legal system is based on English Law. Cyprus is a member of the United Nations, the Commonwealth and the Council of Europe.

Accession to the European Union

Cyprus became a full member of the European Union on 1st May 2004. The accession is expected to enhance stability and security in Cyprus.

Economy and Infrastructure

The island has excellent telecommunications, air and port connections. There are two international airports in Larnaca and Paphos whereas the major port facilities are those of Limassol and Larnaca.

Cyprus is a free-enterprise economy with the government's role being limited to regulation, supervision, planning and the provision of public utilities.

Excellent banking facilities are also available with a number of onshore banks, offshore banking units (OBU's) and specialised financial institutions operating on the island. International correspondent networks are maintained by onshore and offshore banks.
 
Cyprus – An international Business Center

The freedom of foreign currency movement from the central bank of Europe and the establishment of the Euro as the common currency have helped global business to move into European countries that are considered to be business centers, offering a place for a high level of services and a low tax system.

Cyprus has succeeded in establishing its place as a business center and has attracted more than 90,000 international corporations.

Over the last 25 years, Cyprus has been considered an attractive place for international business and has set up a
remarkable system both in the private and the government sectors, helping international corporations to find solutions in rendering building premises for their offices, recruitment of competent human resources, legal services, service from business advisors and tax consultants, and government services.

Cyprus has been a full European Member State and has set up the lower 10% corporation tax among other European Member States. It has also entered into Double Taxation Treaties with 38 countries worldwide, including Greece.

More the 90,000 International corporations including shipping and other multi-national corporations have set up permanent establishments in the inland.

Cyprus is a remarkable place for long summer holidays, as it is a famous destination for most European citizens, especially the English, with more than 1.5 million tourists per year.

In a fast-changing world in which the globalization of economies plays a key role in the success of corporations and clever business, individuals are moving toward markets with a higher level of demand for their products, a lower level of competition, and a lower level of taxation.

Cyprus is different from other financial international business centers in that it offers the lower 10% corporation tax in Europe and 38 Double Taxation Treaties with most countries.

Cyprus is not considered to be an offshore paradise center and has made legal changes in order to synchronize with Europe and international law. International trade laws as well money laundering laws have allowed Cyprus to be considered a financial business center, with true and fair recognition from Europe and other countries.

International Cyprus Company offers the following incentives:

• Lower 10% corporation tax in Europe.
• With the right tax planning corporation, tax can be lower than 10% on taxable profits.
• Cyprus companies, under no circumstances, are considered to be paradise corporations and have passed all    legal barriers for
• international recognition.
• Cyprus invoices and expense vouchers are very well recognized from all European countries as fully deductable    for VAT and tax purposes.
• Cyprus tax law does not include negative articles for transactions between Cyprus and off-shore companies.
• All foreign non-Cypriot shareholders of Cyprus companies pay zero corporation dividend tax if they reside in    Cyprus for less than 183 days per year.