Cyprus: Labour Regulation
The Civil Registry and Migration Department is responsible for issuing work permits to foreigners, as per the Alien and Immigration Laws and Regulations (see Entry and Residence re Temporary Residence Employment permits for expatriate employees). It is up to an expatriate’s prospective employer to apply for their work permit; normally one will only be issued to a foreigner when no suitably qualified local person is available.
Under a law implemented in July 2000, before their spouses can join them, foreigners in Cyprus must either have a five-year work permit or have worked on the island for five years. Alternatively, they can have a combination of worked time and work permit totalling a minimum of five years.
In November 2000, the Cypriot government introduced new regulations to ease this process. However, this only applies to those EU nationals and non-Cypriots who work in certain sectors: offshore workers, reporters, foreign correspondents, accountants with big firms, lecturers, teachers and those who have invested a designated amount in local businesses.
Five-year permits are automatically granted to new foreign entrants into these sectors and those renewing permits would be given extensions long enough to enable them to meet the 'five years in total' clause, the government revealed.