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Iris Corporate Services is recruiting

Our firm has 28 years presence in the Cyprus market as a
corporate service provider, offering full secretarial & company
administration, banking, bookkeeping, accounting and VAT
services, to Local and International Business Companies.
We need to recruit an ACCOUNTANT for our Nicosia office, who
will be responsible for the preparation of the accounting records
and VAT queries for a number of our clients.
Requirements :
– at least 5 years’ experience in a similar position
– partly qualified ACCA or ACA
– fluent in Greek and English
– good knowledge of the Sage accounting software
– good knowledge of Microsoft Office – Excel

Applications including a full C.V. should be sent to:-
E-mail address : iris@iriscorporate.com.cy
Web address : https://www.iriscorporate.com.cy

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Iris Corporate Services are considering common issues which are faced by many people and organizations due to Covid-19

“We at Iris Corporate Services are considering common issues which are faced by many people and organizations due to Covid-19. Since the World Health Organization declared a pandemic, people’s lives, communities and businesses are affected. We wish to work closely with our clients to help them respond and protect their companies and themselves.

Our hope is that together we shall overcome.”

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Reduction and changes in Fees and Dues with respect to Ocean Going Commercial Cyprus Ships – Regulations of 2019 (P.I. 322/2019

As of 27 September, The Council of Ministers of the Republic of Cyprus, has issued New Regulations on Fees and Dues with respect to Ocean Going Commercial Cyprus Ships which are applicable with immediate effect.

In essence, the aim of the new Regulations is the simplification of the relevant fees and dues in order to respond to the current needs of shipping and the rounding up of the relevant amounts thus facilitating the payment procedure. Furthermore, is the abolition of fees which are considered obsolete, resulting in lower registration fees.

New Regulations with respect to the applicable fees and dues for non-Ocean going Commercial Cyprus Ships will be adopted within the coming months.

Schedule of the new applicable fees can be provided upon request by our legal department.

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General Health System (ΓεΣΥ-GHS)

The General Health System (ΓεΣΥ-GHS) is a modern, anthropocentric health system whose main objective is to provide quality health care services to beneficiaries. Main characteristics:

  • the universal coverage of the population
  • the equal treatment of all beneficiaries
  • the provision of a complete package of care services by the beneficiary
  • social solidarity

For the operation of the GHS, a Fund will be set up to which the Contributions will be paid for its financing and from which the Provider will be compensated. The GHS Fund will be managed by the Health Insurance Organization (HIS).

The contributions for the first phase have begun to be paid on 1 March 2019 and for full implementation on 1 March 2020, with a maximum contribution of €180.000.

Contributors:

  • Employees (1.7% as at 29/02/2020 and 2.65% as from 01/03/2020 on gross earnings)
  • Employers (1.85% as at 29/02/2020 and 2.90% as from 01/03/2020 on gross earnings)
  • State (1.65% as at 29/02/2020 and 4.70% as from 01/03/2020 on the income from employees, employers, Officers and Pensioners)
  • Self-employed workers (2.55% as at 29/02/2020 and 4% as from 01/03/2020 on gross earnings)
  • Pensioners (1.70% as at 29/02/2020 and 2.65% as from 01/03/2020 on pension)
  • Rentier (1.70% as at 29/02/2020 and 2.65% as from 01/03/2020 on gross earnings)
  • Officers (1.70% as at 29/02/2020 and 2.65% as from 01/03/2020 on gross earnings)
  • Persons responsible for payment to officers of their intended earnings (1.85% as at 29/02/2020 and 2.90% as from 01/03/2020 on gross earnings).

In case a physical person is not a tax resident in Cyprus, he will pay contributions only for his income, earnings and pensions derived from the Republic of Cyprus, excluding dividends and interest.

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Targeting fictitious company transfers abroad

According to legislation and information from the cooperating states, it will attempt to “close” the tax frontier with the Ministry of Finance to stop the phenomenon of fleeing businesses and traders in countries with lower tax rates and to frighten those who have transferred their activities abroad.

Large charges

Oversupply and high insurance contributions force more and more taxpayers and businesses to turn to countries like Cyprus and Bulgaria where tax rates are at 12.5% and 10%, respectively. Contrariwise, in Greece, the corporate tax rate has reached 29% (with the IMF proposing to reduce it to 10% while the advance tax payment is 100%). Taking into account the increased contributions, as well, the operation of an entity is now required. At the same time, thousands of taxpayers’ applications are pending from foreign tax residences, who have decided to look elsewhere for their fortune.

According to information, the volume of applications has surpassed every precedent, but bureaucracy and excessive excitement, to the detriment of circumvention of European legislation, create big issues to the taxpayers. According to legislation, for those who live abroad for over 183 days, the income which is taxable in Greece, is this which received in Greece and not for worldwide. A basic requirement is to declare the change of their residency in the Register of the WHO and in the corresponding authorities of the country where they are now residing. They also have to designate a tax representative in Greece.

However, a lot of companies have set up offices in neighboring countries without having any activity or employees. Most of them are service companies and aim to reduce tax burdens.

Finance Minister, Mr Euklidis Tsakalotos, answering a relevant question, emphasizes that when business activities remain in Greece and there are no changes in ownership and administration, migrations seem to involve fictitious transfers. Obviously, these are unlawful business practices that seek to benefit from a favorable tax regime and abuse the freedoms granted by the law of E.E. In this context, it is expected that the relevant controls will be stepped up while legislative regulation is being prepared. Based on this a new information is required in the tax declarations for the tax year ended 31 December 2018, where the tax payer has the obligation to declare the expenses from Non-Member States or from countries with preferential tax legislation.

Mr. Tsakalotos noted that the relevant departments of the Ministry of Finance are paying particular attention to the phenomenon of moving Greek businesses to neighboring countries with low tax rates.

In order to prevent tax competition among Member States, initiatives have also been taken at EU level, such as CbCR (Country by Country Report), for example the exchange of information on taxation between Member States, which allows national tax authorities to identify tax evasion systems

Transnational agreements

Officers from the Ministry of Finance mentioned that transnational agreements with Bulgaria and Cyprus will be signed shortly so that all these companies can be scrutinized. The same executives say that fines will be imposed on those companies that have been found to have set up businesses in Bulgaria, but in essence their business activities are in Greece. On the other hand, the Greek government will send data to all Bulgarian people working in Greece in order to find out if the Bulgarian authorities are receiving an indemnity from their country.

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New Double tax treaty between Cyprus and United Kingdom

·         New treaty has been signed between Cyprus and the UK, which replaces the treaty signed between the two countries in 1974.

·         It is expected that the new treaty will soon be ratified, thus it will become effective as from 1 January 2019.
The new treaty is generally based on the OECD Model Tax Convention framework with some modifications.

·         It applies to taxes on income as well as on gains from alienation of movable or immovable property.

·         For UK, the treaty covers the income tax, the corporation tax and the capital gains tax.

·         For Cyprus, it covers the corporate and personal income tax, the defense tax and capital gains tax.

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Double tax treaty between Cyprus and Saudi Arabia

The double tax treaty for the avoidance of double taxation  between Cyprus and Saudi  Arabia was signed on 3 January 2018. The treaty is expected to be ratified and come into force as from 1 January 2019.

 

Dividends

Withholding  taxes on dividends:

 

  • There  is  no  withholding  tax in cases where there is at least 25% participation by a company that is tax resident in the receiving jurisdiction.
  • In all other cases the withholding tax is 5%.

 

Interest

There is no withholding tax on interest, as long as the recipient of the interest is the beneficial owner of the income.

 

Royalties

Withholding  taxes on royalties (as  long  as  the recipient of the royalties is the beneficial owner of the income):

 

  • 5% in cases where the royalties are paid for the  use  of,  or  the  right  to  use,  industrial, commercial or scientific equipment
  • in all other cases the withholding tax is 8%

 

Capital gains

Gains arising from  the disposal of shares of a substantial  participation in the  capital  of  a  company  which  is  resident  of  a Contracting State may be taxed in that Contracting State.

A person is considered to have a substantial participation when this participation is at least 25% of the capital of that company, at any time within twelve months prior to the disposal of the shares.

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Interpretative Circular 14 Cyprus Tax Department

In accordance to the Interpretative Circular 14, the Cyprus Tax Department clarifies that as per Article 5(2)(f) when a company grants a loan or financial facility to:

  • its shareholder physical person
  • its director physical person
  • the spouse or relative of up to second degree of its director or

shareholder is deemed as obtaining a benefit equal to 9% on the average balance of the loan or financial facility at the end of each month.

This monthly benefit is also deemed to arise for non-Cyprus tax resident shareholders or directors and as from 1/1/2018 is calculated for the whole year irrespective of the actual days exercising physical duties in Cyprus.

The benefit is considered as income arising in Cyprus and increases a person’s taxable income.

If the benefit is more than the tax free amount of €19.500, then the company must calculate the income tax payable by this person and pay it through the Pay-As-You-Earn (PAYE) system.

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EU Publishes Blacklist of 17 Tax Havens

1. American Samoa,
2. Bahrain
3. Barbados
4. Grenada
5. Guam
6. South Korea
7. Macau
8. Marshall Islands
9. Mongolia
10. Namibia
11. Palau
12. Panama
13. Saint Lucia
14. Samoa
15. Trinidad and Tobago
16. Tunisia
17. United Arab Emirates

The countries on the blacklist face restrictions on EU funding or potential investments from the European Investment Bank. EU governments, meanwhile, can choose to impose their own sanctions against the blacklisted countries.

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