On September 1st, the Department of the Registrar of Companies and Intellectual Property of the Ministry of Energy, Commerce and Industry of Cyprus (the “Registrar of Companies”) has announced that the implementation of the final solution of the electronic system of the register of beneficial owners of corporate and other legal entities (the “Register of Beneficial Owners”) is expected to take place around the end of October 2023 (the “Final Solution”).
On a previous announcement, the Registrar of Companies clarified that, during the operation of the interim solution, no penalties would be imposed to companies and other legal entities and/or their officers for failure to submit the details and information in relation to their beneficial owners on the Register of Beneficial Owners and that such penalties would only be applicable during the implementation of the Final Solution.
Given that the Final Solution is expected to be implemented by the end of October 2023, all companies that have been incorporated or registered in accordance with the provisions of the Cyprus Companies Law Cap. 113, the European public limited liability companies (SE) and the Partnerships as well as their officers/partners, must proceed to submit the details and information in relation to their beneficial owners on the Register of Beneficial Owners by the 30th of September 2023.
In addition to the launch of the final solution system, a one (1) month period will be given to all entities for confirming and completing the data that have already been submitted to the interim solution which will then be migrated onto the final solution system. At the expiration of the one (1) month period, the automatic imposition of fines and penalties for non-compliant entities will be done through the final solution of the electronic system of the Register of Beneficial Owners.
It is reminded that, in the event that an entity fails to comply with the obligation to file the details of its beneficial owners in the Register of Beneficial Owners, the corporate or other legal entity and each of its officers shall be subject to a fine of Two Hundred Euros (€ 200) and a further fine of One Hundred Euros (€ 100) for each day of non-compliance with a maximum charge of twenty thousand Euros (€20,000). Additionally, criminal liability or prosecution of any person might also arise in the case of non-compliance with the abovementioned obligation.
The officers of a corporate and/or other legal entity will not be subject to any penalty in the event that they had acted with due diligence in complying with the provisions of the Prevention and Suppression of Money Laundering Activities Law 188(I)/2007 (as amended) and of the Anti-Money Laundering Directive 2018/843 and considering that failure to comply with the obligation to file the details of the beneficial owners was not due to inaction, omission or negligence on their part.