In December 2015 the Cyprus Ministry of Finance issued a
Decree implementing the Organisation of Economic Cooperation
and Development's (the OECD) Common Reporting Standard (CRS)
and the Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement on the
Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information (MCAA).
The Decree, which took effect on January 1 2016, sets out
the framework for financial institutions operating in Cyprus to
collect and review information from their customers and
investors regarding tax residence. It also sets out the
framework for these financial institutions to forward
prescribed information to the national tax authorities for
disclosure to relevant overseas tax authorities.
The Decree sets out the main rules regarding client
acceptance, due diligence and reporting, defines the scope of
the CRS in terms of entities and products and sets out the
reporting deadlines and penalties for any breach.
Financial institutions are required to obtain the tax
residence and tax identification number of all new customers.
For existing individual account holders they may rely on the
customer's residential address according to their records for
the purposes of determining the account holder's tax residence
and reporting status. The deadline for reporting information to
the Cyprus tax authorities is June 30 of the year following the
calendar year to which the information relates. As what is
known as an early adopter under the MCAA, Cyprus will collect
information from 2016 and reporting of the information for that
year will take place in 2017.