29 July 2020
With Europe fast becoming a tech haven for talent and companies, the island of Cyprus provides a ‘very safe and attractive’ destination for investors and tech firms in India to base their European operations, a conference was told.
Setting out a raft of opportunities for investors from India, His Excellency Mr. Agis Loizou, High Commissioner of the Republic of Cyprus to India, and speakers from EY, Deloitte and PwC Cyprus cited the island’s rise to challenges posed by Covid-19, access to funding for start-ups and a strong culture of research and innovation for fuelling its ascent as a top destination for investment amidst the pandemic.
Compared with Malta, Ireland, the Netherlands and Luxembourg, Cyprus also offers the lowest cost of doing business, George Campanellas, Chief Executive of Invest Cyprus, the national investment promotion agency, said.
“We are now taking enquiries from tech companies on a daily basis,” reported Mr Campanellas, “We have visited Bangalore and other tech hubs in India, and cities in Asia and US and we can see that Cyprus remains among the top destinations for setting up headquarters. We believe this will help us grow into a tech cluster, with tech businesses taking advantage of the many benefits our country offers.”
During the webinar hosted by Invest Cyprus, the High Commissioner Mr Loizou pointed to double tax agreements between India and Cyprus and the signing of an MOU over the exchange of financial intelligence related to money laundering and terrorist financing activities. “Cyprus and India have always demonstrated great friendship and mutual respect for each other. Our bilateral relations could not be better than they are right now,” he said.
“Cyprus, especially during and after challenging times, is a very safe and attractive destination in all respects. Cyprus offers many advantages including that we are an EU member state with a very strategic location which allows foreign investors direct access to a market of hundreds of millions of EU citizens. Cyprus also has a robust legal and regulatory framework as well as one of most attractive tax systems within the EU.”
Businessman Sunil Kapoor, Director of FML Ship Management Limited, who relocated his firm to Cyprus in 2007, set out why he had decided on Cyprus as a place to grow and scale his business. “The people in Cyprus are well known for their resilience and hard work,” he said, “It’s remarkable to see how the people and the country bounce back after crisis, faster than any other countries I’ve seen.”
He added: “One of the biggest advantages of Cyprus is the people and culture, where relationships, hospitality and friendliness come first. It is with no hesitation that I encourage investors to relocate and invest in Cyprus.”
“The significant growth of the Cyprus investment funds industry had put Cyprus on the funds map and provided further opportunities for businesses in India”, said Andreas Yiasemides President CIFA.
Panicos Teklos from Deloitte highlighted the increased interest from Indian fund managers who want to establish a structure in Cyprus and take advantage of the regional position, especially in line of Brexit.
Antonis Rouvas from KPMG said: “offers many advantage for channelling international investment into India offering a credible and robust jurisdiction to enhance the business case”.
Asked how Cyprus stacked up against other jurisdictions such as Malta and Dubai, Petros Liassides, of EY, said: “It’s not just the tax system, which is very favourable, it’s the overall environment, the attitude of the authorities to welcome foreign companies and investors and how friendly and efficient the system is.”
Cyprus also offers a stable and modern business environment for IP companies, said Mr Christos Charalambides, of PwC. Currently, Cyprus IP companies can achieve an effective tax rate of as low as 2.5%, through an 80% deemed deduction mechanism on qualifying income and profits. These can be further reduced to 2.1% when coupled with National Interest Deduction before tax amortisation.
Notes to Editors:
For interviews and further information, please contact Jane Kerr at [email protected] or + 44 (0) 7920 542832.
About Invest Cyprus
Invest Cyprus (Cyprus Investment Promotion Agency) is the investment promotion agency of the Government of Cyprus, dedicated to attracting and facilitating foreign direct investment into the country. In close collaboration with all governmental authorities and public institutions, as well as the private sector and international experts, Invest Cyprus is the country’s lead agent in establishing Cyprus as a world class investment destination. Invest Cyprus’ mandate, is to raise awareness of Cyprus as a location for FDI across the globe, providing certainty around all aspects of operating a business in Cyprus and supporting potential investors in developing their business case for investment into the country.