Why Cyprus Means Business
Cyprus has always played a major role as a trading and business centre due to its strategic location at the crossroads of three continents. The implementation of wide-ranging structural reforms has led to the creation of new business opportunities for dynamic investors. The island is today the European Union’s south-easternmost outpost, boasting a healthy economy, a favourable tax regime, an advanced commercial infrastructure, a conducive business environment, a liberal investment regime and a highly qualified manpower.
The development of the commercial infrastructure in Cyprus is mainly attributed to the rapidly expanding role of the services sector in the economy. This reflects the island’s success in moving away from economic activities dependent on agriculture and traditional manufacturing onto a high-growth path based on the provision of high value added professional services.
Cyprus is rapidly emerging as one of the most favoured holding company jurisdictions worldwide. Especially since joining the European Union, the country has become one of the most attractive locations for the setting up of holding companies. The wide network of double taxation treaties and other international investment agreements, enables multinational corporations and international enterprises active in cross-border business activities to increase considerably their returns on investment, by using the Cyprus holding company structure in their international tax planning activities.
The island has also developed into a fully-fledged shipping centre combining both a sovereign flag and a resident shipping industry, renowned for its high quality services and standards of safety. A number of fiscal and economic advantages, such as the competitive ship registration costs and annual tonnage taxes, the favourable tax regime for ship management and the low operation costs have further enhanced the image of Cyprus as an international shipping and shipmanagement centre.
Cyprus has developed into a bridge of cooperation and may be used not only as an effective jurisdiction for routing investments within the European Union by third country investors but also as a portal for investment outside the European Union, particularly into the rapidly growing economies of Central and Eastern Europe, India and China. It is not therefore surprising that Cyprus is considered as “the gateway of Europe”.