As part of the effort to mitigate the adverse effects of the coronavirus outbreak on the economy, the Cyprus government has adopted a number of measures as follows:
The 31 March 2020 deadline for submission of income tax returns for companies and self-employed persons preparing accounts, and for the payment of the relevant tax due, has been extended to 1 June 2020.
For most businesses, payment of VAT for quarters ending 29 February, 31 March and 30 April 2020 has been deferred until 10 November 2020, without the imposition of interest and penalties, provided that the relevant quarterly VAT returns are submitted within the normal deadline.
Certain categories of businesses that operate on a cash basis and whose operations have not been particularly affected (e.g. groceries, supermarkets, convenience stores, bakeries, pharmacies etc) are not entitled to the above deferral of payments. Moreover, these businesses are obliged, on a temporary basis, to submit VAT returns and make the relevant VAT payments on a monthly basis, instead of quarterly.
The publication in the Government Gazette of the three-month notice prior to the strike-off of non compliant companies is postponed until January 2021.
The deadline for payment of the annual company levy of €350 for the year 2020 is extended to 31 December 2020, without the imposition of penalties.
The introduction of administrative penalties for late filing of statutory documents is postponed until January 2021.
The filing of annual returns for year 2019 can be made until 28 January 2021 without the imposition of late-submission fee.
For persons (both physical and legal) that, as at 1 March 2020, had entered a scheme for settlement of their overdue social insurance contributions via instalments, the payment of the March and April 2020 instalments is suspended, and the repayment period is effectively extended by two months.
The increase in the contributions to the GHS, which came into effect on 1 March 2020, is suspended for the months of April, May and June 2020.
Any ongoing eviction process is suspended, and no new evictions processes will be issued by the Courts, until 31 May 2020, so long as the tenants have not defaulted on their obligation to pay rent up to and including 29 February 2020.
Borrowers (both physical and legal persons) facing economic difficulties due to the coronavirus are entitled to request suspension of payment of instalments for their credit facilities, provided that the credit facilities were not in arrears for more than 30 days as at 29 February 2020. The suspension is effective from 30 March 2020 and up to 31 December 2020. Financial institutions do not have the right to reject any application, except in cases of credit facilities that were in arrears for more than 30 days as at 29 February 2020.
The Ministry has introduced a number of special schemes to provide economic assistance to individuals and businesses that have been adversely affected by the coronavirus, namely (i) complete suspension of business, (ii) partial suspension of business, (iii) special sick leave allowance, (iv) special leave for child care, and (v) self-employed workers.
Various other economic measures and packages are currently under consideration for supporting affected sectors of the economy, as well as for the provision of government guarantees to banks, so as to facilitate the provision of liquidity in the economy through the granting of new credit facilities.
If you have any questions regarding this or any of the other initiatives offered to those affected by the current disruption, please contact Peter Economides at email@example.com.