Cyprus has recently fully transposed the 4th European Directive (EU 2015/849) of the European Parliament (4th AML Directive) into domestic law and triggered the implementation of the Ultimate Beneficial Owner (UBO) Register of companies and other legal entities in Cyprus.
Following the resolution of the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Cyprus dated 16th December 2020, it was resolved that (a) the Registrar of Companies and Official Receiver of the Ministry of Energy, Trade and Industry (herein after the ROC) be appointed as the competent authority for maintaining the Central Register of UBO of companies and other legal entities and (b) The ROC be authorized to collect information about the UBOs of companies and other legal entities through a dedicated transitional system that has been developed.
The latest announcement of the ROC is that the collection of the data for companies shall start on the 16th March 2021 and as of that date a grace period of 6 months has been given to accomplish submission.
We must underline that eligible for having access to the transitional system which has been developed will be only competent authorities, the Cyprus Bar Association, the Central Bank of Cyprus and the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC), the Unit for Combating Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing, the police, the Customs’ Department, and the Tax Department. Furthermore, any person or organization who may demonstrate a legitimate interest and provide sufficient evidence in this respect, will be as well having access to information held by the UBO Register.
Following the above, the UBO information to be collected and entered within the transitional system will be then moved to the final platform solution which will be developed in the second half of 2021.
With respect to Trusts and other types of legal arrangements, the UBO Register will be maintained and supervised by CySEC. Shortly we will revert with more information in this respect.
Both the ROC and CySEC will provide more guidance in due course in this respect and other related issued connected with the above topic.