Starting a Business in Cyprus
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Why Start A Business In Cyprus?
Setting up a business in Cyprus is appealing to many people because of its warm Mediterranean climate, a slower pace of life and a low crime rate. English is spoken by almost 90% of the population in Cyprus even though the country is primarily Greek in terms of language and culture. Cypriots drive on the left and all road signs are in English. The lifestyle is relaxed and people tend to spend most of their time outdoors.
Attracting foreign capital has always been among the main objectives of the country's development policy. Administrative procedures are simple and, in most cases, foreign participation of up to 100% is permitted.
Cyprus is an attractive place to conduct business. The strategic location of the island, the tax regime, it's wonderful climate, the well developed infrastructure and the multilingual and well qualified human resources are some of the benefits it provides. Cyprus has always been an idylic location for investment and, in light of the tax reform and Cyprus' accession to the EU, the island's appeal as an international financial centre has become more apparent in comparison to other nations around the world.
What is the population?
The population of Cyprus is approximately 820,000.
What are the essentials to know?
Everyone working in Cyprus is required to contribute to the country's social insurance scheme. Funded by contributions from employees, employers and the state, the system provides both pensions and benefits in every sector of social security. A total of 16.6% of earnings, comprised of 6.3 per cent of your gross salary, paid by both employee and employer, and the rest (4%) is paid by the state. Those who are self-employed pay 11.6% of their salary and the remaining 4% is paid by the state.
Contributing towards the social insurance system entitles you and your family to free or subsidised medical and dental treatment. If you belong to an EU country, in which you have paid social insurance contributions for the past two years you are entitled to similar cover for a limited period of time. EU pensioners can obtain free treatment.
The majority of Cypriots and foreigners, who are in a position to, prefer to take out private health insurance because of the wider choice of medical practitioners and hospitals, and the appeal of not having to be put on a waiting list.
If you are eligible for social insurance benefits in Cyprus, you are required to obtain a health card. There are two types, Medical Card A and Medical Card B.
Medical Card A: Individuals without dependents, and an annual income of less than 15,000 Euros, couples with an annual income of under 30,000 Euro (for each additional dependent child this increases by 1,700 Euro) and members of families with four or more children (irrespective of income) are issued with this card. It entitles the holder to free healthcare.
Medical Card B: Individuals without dependants and an annual income of between 15,000 Euro and 20,000 Euro, and members of families with up to three children and an annual income of between 30,000 and 37,000 Euro are issued with this card. It entitles the holder to half-price healthcare.
If you don't qualify for either card, because you earn a higher income, you will be required to pay around 11 Euro for a consultation with a doctor and around 85 Euro per day for inpatient hospital care.
In addition to the application form for the medical card (available from any general hospital in Cyprus), you are required to submit proof of income and evidence of payment of tax and social insurance contributions, to the Ministry of Health in Nicosia. This can be done through your local medical centre or general hospital in Cyprus.
Organisations that can assist with Starting a Business
Whether you are entering a new market and have yet to establish a business entity, or you have been in a country market for some time; whether you have one worker or thousands of employees, SafeGuard World International can help. We can support you during every stage of your journey with global payroll, contingent labor, global recruitment and a variety of multinational HR consulting and professional services.
Finding office space abroad poses one of the most difficult changes that many start-ups face. Location, costs, and transport all need to be considered. And, more crucially of all, what office will allow a new business to attract and retain the best staff?
We do payroll there. We can do it anywhere. Many companies with global employees find that payroll can be a stressful part of doing business overseas. Finding a reliable payroll company, faxing and emailing multiple payroll spreadsheets each month, and treasury management are just some of the obstacles
Fiducenter is an independent domiciliation agent, with Luxembourg origins and over 30 years of existence.
Sovereign offers a range of advisory and support services to assist companies of all sizes to establish successful business operations in foreign markets
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Neoserve is a firm of qualified professionals offering a wide range of client-focused business services to both international and local clients aiming to meet their requirements.
GTP cross cultural trainings and intercultural workshops help global companies in improving their communication, efficiency and profitability when doing business across cultures.