Cyprus will accelerate the issuance of building permits

The Cypriot authorities are on track to reduce the timing of the issuance of architectural and construction licenses. At the same time, the waiting time for construction licenses will be reduced to two to three weeks.

Cyprus Minister of the Interior Nicos Nouris informed the public that, starting from October 1, 2020, the Cypriot Government is launching an architecture and construction license accelerated program, which will reduce the time it takes to process applications for such licenses from the current 18 months up to 10 days for online applications and up to 20 days for written applications.

With an accelerated process for considering applications for the issuance of construction licenses, companies or individuals who submit their applications in writing will be able to obtain this license within 20 days. If a company or an individual submits such an application on-line, then the process of considering the application and issuing a construction license will not exceed 10 days.

Nicos Nouris agreed with the fact that today the procedure for considering applications and issuing licenses for planning or construction is quite complicated and takes a lot of time, regardless of which project the application was submitted for - whether it is for a project that costs tens of millions of euros. , or in a small house for personal residence.

At the moment, most of the applications for a building license come from ordinary citizens wishing to build a private house for personal residence and makes up about 62% of the total number of applications submitted. And ordinary citizens also have to wait for the consideration of their application and obtaining construction licenses for almost 18 months, - summed up the Minister of Internal Affairs of Cyprus.

Starting from October 1, 2020, applications for a building license can be made in the 4 main municipalities of Cyprus, which are Nicosia, Limassol, Paphos and Larnaca. Also, development and construction companies of Cyprus and ordinary citizens can submit their applications to all district offices of the planning department.

Mr Nicos Nouris explained that at present, online applications can only be made in the district city planning departments, and not in the four municipalities that are not yet ready.

As of October 1, applications for building licenses and land plots can be submitted to the offices of local authorities, that is, to about 30 municipalities in the Republic of Cyprus.

However, in the case where applications are submitted to local government offices only in writing, the application must be reviewed within a certain period of time, Nicos Nouris said.

He explained that if the application was submitted in writing, then the time for consideration and issuance of a building license will not exceed 20 days.

“Our efforts to simplify the procedure for issuing construction licenses do not end there,” Nicos Nouris said, and promised that the Ministry of Internal Affairs would additionally prepare a draft law on reforming the method that officials currently use when calculating the cost of issuing such licenses.

"Instead of the current complex system, the new one will be based on the square meter of the project."

Claiming that "the authorities need to move forward, leaving behind the thinking of the past," the minister said that "the steps to be taken will be constantly reviewed by the technical services and district planning departments."

He added that the ministry is also planning to issue a timetable and timetable outlining the timeframe required for the issuance of all permits by various authorities.