Workforce Payments Guide Cyprus

Last updated: Dec 26, 2023

Currency
Euro (EUR)
Payroll Frequency
Monthly
Capital
Nicosia
Fiscal Year
1st January - 31st December.
Employer Taxes
14.9%
Employee Costs
10.95%
Central Bank
The Central Bank of Cyprus (CBC)
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3rd Party Payments

Authority  Payment Frequency  Due Date  Payment Method 
Tax Department  Monthly  End of Following Month  E-Payments 
Social Insurance  Monthly  End of Following Month  e-Payments 
NHS Contributions  Monthly  End of Following Month  e-Payments 
Special Contribution for Defence  Monthly  End of Following Month  e-Payments 
Tax withheld on payments to non-Cyprus residents  Monthly  End of Following Month  e-Payments 
Premium Tax for Life Insurance Companies  Quarterly  30 April, 31 August, 31 December  e-Payments 
Immovable Property Tax  Yearly  30 September  e-Payments 
Provisional Tax  Bi-annual  31 July, 31 December  e-Payments 
Special Contribution for Defence  Bi-annual  30 June, 31 December  e-Payments 

 

Payments Coverage

Papaya Global Fully supports workforce payments in Cyprus.

Contractor Payments

Papaya Global supports payments to contractors in Cyprus. The payout currency may vary based on the receiver bank account setup when receiving foreign currencies. It is advised for contractors to reach out to their bank to confirm how foreign currencies are handled

Payroll Frequency

Monthly

IBAN

IBAN Example Cyprus CY90543464483719628869547331
IBAN in print CY90 5434 6448 3719 6288 6954 7331
Country Code CY
Digit Code 90
Bank code 543
Branch Code 46448
Bank Account Number 3719628869547331

KYC

In Cyprus, the Know Your Customer (KYC) process is a crucial part of Client Due Diligence (CDD) procedures and Anti-Money Laundering/Combating the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) legislations.

It involves identifying and verifying the identity of the client, the origin of their wealth, assessing corporate structures, and validating registration credentials of their business. The process is conducted before entering into a business relationship and is also conducted periodically through ongoing monitoring.

For an individual beneficial owner, the KYC process requires a verified passport copy, a utility bill no older than 3 months to prove residential address, and an original bank reference letter.

For ownership of a legal entity, the required documents include a verified copy of the Certificate of Incorporation and any legal certificates in case of a name change, the Memorandum and Articles of Association, evidence of the registered office address, the verified register of directors and secretaries, register of members, copies of share certificates, and evidence of ownership. In addition, the passport copy and original bank reference of each owner of the legal entity are also required.

If the legal entity is a listed company, the shareholders owning more than 10% must be listed, a verified copy of the Stock Exchange listing in the relevant country is required, along with a statement by the Board of Directors on the seniority of individuals in the company, and the latest audited accounts information.

For ownership of a Trust or a company owned by a Trust, all required documents of the Trust, Settlor, and Beneficiaries must be verified, and declaration and evidence of ownership of the trust are necessary.

The KYC process in Cyprus also involves the use of KYC/AML software solutions for verification of users, continuous screening against global sanctions, watchlists, PEPs, and adverse media. This includes ID validation, liveness checks or video interviews, screening against a blocklist of fraudsters, and detecting potential fraud activity with behavioral risk scores. The software also has the functionality to perform ongoing AML monitoring, track and manage active cases, get updates on any changes, and monitor performance bottlenecks. It is integrated via Web SDK, Mobile SDK, or RESTful API.

Financial institutions and obliged entities are responsible for conducting and maintaining the KYC and CDD procedures. The risk classification of the client is determined through a Risk Based Approach (RBA) and can be Low Risk, Normal Risk, or High Risk, which affects the appropriate due diligence and monitoring processes.

Banking Regulations

Cross-border banking activities in Cyprus are regulated under the Credit Institutions Laws or, in the case of a credit institution authorized in another EU Member State, on the basis of relevant passporting provisions.

The revised Cross-Border Payment Regulation (CBPR2) is also relevant. It aims to ensure that cross-border payments in euro are not more costly than national transactions in the national currency of a non-euro member state. It also increases cost transparency requirements for currency conversion services provided when clients initiate online credit transfers and card-based transactions.

Bank Account Opening

To open a company bank account in Cyprus, the following requirements must be met:

1. Valid passports of the directors and owners are required for identification.

2. Foreign citizens and companies must provide registration specifics of the company, its official and physical addresses, the primary location where business activities are conducted, taxation information.

3. The company’s registration details, registered address, physical address, address of primary business activities, tax details, details about the directors and owners, expected turnover, and purpose for opening the account should be provided.

4. Required documents include copies of the memorandum and articles of association, the certificate of incorporation and a certificate of good standing.

5. For companies registered abroad if over two years old, a Certificate of Good Standing is needed.

6. Certificate of Directors & Secretary, Certificate of Shareholders, Certificate of Registered Address, Directors’ and UBOs’ passports and utility bills are required as well.

7. The bank may also ask for the Trust Deed between the ultimate beneficial owner(s) (UBO) and the registered shareholder(s) acting as nominees if applicable, as well as further information on the legal entity and its transactions.

8. A notarized copy of the passport of the applicant, the original or certified true copy of the utility bill certifying the address of the applicant’s place of residence (up to 3 months), bank reference letter (up to 3 months old), source of wealth, signed application form, and Biography (CV) will be needed for each beneficial owner, director and authorized signatory.

9. The company must have physical presence or activity in Cyprus which is usually proven by renting offices and employing personnel. The bank will require to see a lease agreement and an employment agreement.

10. Each Cypriot company must maintain proper accounts and prepare and submit financial statements with the Tax Office. Commercial banks always ask for the financial statements on the annual review of the bank account.

The process to open a company bank account in Cyprus can take between 1 to 2 months depending on the complexity of the case, availability of personnel and other factors.

International Banks

Here are some of the major foreign banks operating in Cyprus:

  1. Alpha Bank
  2. Bank of Beirut
  3. Jordan Kuwait Bank
  4. Societe Generale
  5. Banque SBA
  6. National Bank of Greece (Cyprus) Ltd
  7. Eurobank Cyprus Ltd
  8. Hellenic Bank Public Company Ltd
  9. Astrobank

Local Major Banks

The major local banks operating in Cyprus are Alpha Bank Cyprus Limited, Ancoria Bank Limited, Astrobank Limited, Bank of Cyprus Public Company Ltd, Central Cooperative Bank AD, Cyprus Development Bank Public Company Ltd, Eurobank Cyprus Ltd, Hellenic Bank Public Company Ltd, National Bank of Greece (Cyprus) Ltd, and Societe Generale Bank – Cyprus Ltd.

Payment Tools

In Cyprus, the B2C payment tools available include all types of credit and debit cards, a wide range of e-wallets, vouchers, instant bank transfer, and mobile solutions.

These also include digital wallets, UPI through the Senmo payment gateway, and digital payment methods such as direct debits and electronic transfers. Card-based payment instruments, wired or wireless point of sales (POS), mobile POS, and virtual POS terminals are also available.

Payment cards issued through a four-party scheme such as Visa, Mastercard, Maestro, Union Pay are widely used. In addition, services like Stripe, 2Checkout, Alipay, Authorize.Net, Crypto.com Pay, IBEX PAY, Bitcoin Payments, Maxpay Payments, Mollie Payments, MultiSafepay, Partially Payment Plans, Pay with Xumm (XRPL), PayPal Checkout, Plisio, QuickPay Payments, Rapyd Payments, Revolut, SEPA, Viva Wallet, and Zapper: Mobile Payments are also available.

Moreover, crypto-assets and services offered by crypto-asset service providers (CASPs) are also considered as payment tools in Cyprus.

Cryptocurrency

Companies using cryptocurrencies for employee payments are expected to make social insurance payments in local currencies as cryptocurrencies are not accepted as legal tender.

Cyprus has a regulatory framework that aims to control money laundering and counter-terrorist financing. Companies that provide services related to cryptocurrencies, known as Crypto Asset Services Providers (CASPs), must be registered with the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission.

The Cyprus Income Tax Law and the Cyprus Tax Department have not provided specific guidance on the recognition, treatment, and taxation of cryptocurrencies. However, cryptocurrency earnings of individuals or organizations whose primary source of income is derived from crypto transactions are taxed at the standard corporate tax rate of 12.5%. Goods or services paid for in crypto are subject to the same Income Tax rates as other income.

Income Tax can be calculated by determining the fair market value of the cryptocurrency on the day of payment. It is essential for organizations and individuals to understand when taxes are owed on crypto and which tax bracket they fall under due to some ambiguity in Cyprus’s crypto-asset policies.

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