Cyprus–Norway relations are foreign relations between Cyprus and Norway. Diplomatic relations were established on 22 March 1963. The government in Cyprus considers that the "bilateral relations between Cyprus and Norway are excellent in all fields". Neither country has resident ambassadors.
Cyprus is represented in Norway through its embassy in Stockholm, Sweden, and two honorary consulates, one in Oslo and the second in Kristiansand. Norway is represented in Cyprus through its embassy in Athens, Greece, and an honorary consulate in Nicosia. Both countries are full members of the Council of Europe. Diplomatic relations were established on 22 March 1963. On 7 April 1998, Svein Ole Sæther became the non-resident Norwegian Ambassador to Cyprus stationed in Tel Aviv. He said "[bilateral relations] have been enhanced over the last years, not at least due to tourism." Norway used the opportunity to reaffirm its support to a peaceful solution to the Cyprus dispute and said it would support Cyprus' entry into the European Union.
On 21 August 1951, there was a Consular Convention and an Exchange of Letters relating to establishing diplomatic relations. On 2 May 1951, there was a Convention for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with respect to Taxes on Income. On 17 May 1962, there was an Exchange of Letters constituting an Agreement on the Abolition of Visa Requirement in Nicosia. On 5 March 1963, there was an Agreement on Commercial Scheduled Air Transport signed in London.
Cyprus as tax haven
The taxation levels in Cyprus are considerably lower than in Norway, and Cyprus has actively courted Norwegians to move to Cyprus. Among the Norwegians who moved to Cyprus is the shipping billionaire John Fredriksen, who was the richest man in Norway.
In 1996 tax rules in Norway were changed to keep shipping companies competitive and under the Norwegian flag as ships changed their registry to Cyprus. By 2008 changes to the tonnage tax regime to harmonize them with the European Union forced some companies to register in Cyprus. Norwegian Service rig company Prosafe moved their headquarters to Cyprus.
"Bilateral Relations: Cyprus". Norway: A country study. Federal Research Division of the Library of Congress of the USA (2002). This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
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There are several Norwegian Honorary Consulates in Greece, and one in Nicosia, Cyprus.[dead link]
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Responding to questions of reporters during his meeting with Svein O. Saether, the Norwegian ambassador to Tel Aviv who is also accredited to the Greek Cypriot side ...
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The changes were aimed at making Norwegian shipping rules more like those in the European Union, but industry groups have said the move might force some to register in tax havens such as Bermuda or Cyprus.
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What's more, since Norway's richest man, John Fredriksen, took Cypriot citizenship in 2006, the flow of his fellow countrymen has increased, too, with investors taking advantage of the lowest income tax in Europe and minimal crime rates.
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Low taxation, low living costs and summery winter temperature limits more and more Norwegians to settle on the Mediterranean island. Now we have established a Norwegian "colony" in Paphos in Cyprus similar seen in Spain.
- Cyprus Ministry of Foreign Affairs: list of bilateral treaties with Norway
- Cyprus embassy in Stockholm (also accredited to Norway)
- Norway embassy in Athens (also accredited to Cyprus)