Interview

(December, 2017)

What is the full name of the company and full name of Director?
My name is Christodoulos Aspromallis and I am a Cyprus auditor. My audit Company’s name is Andersen Business Audit Services Ltd.

What is your education?
I am a Fellow Chartered Certified Accountant (FCCA). I became a qualified member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) on 31.1.2003, and was admitted to Fellowship on 31.1.2008. Before setting up my own practice, I worked for a approximately 12 years, at a Big 4 audit firm. In total I have approximately 18 years of professional experience in the audit profession.

When was the company founded and for how many years has it been carrying out its professional activities?
The Company was founded on 17/3/2011 and it has been carrying out its professional activities since then.

Which services does your company provide?
We provide audit and assurance, accounting, taxation compliance and advisory, VAT compliance and advisory, VIES, INTRASTAT, payroll, business consultancy. Depending on the client’s needs, through business associates, we are also able to assist clients with company incorporation, or purchase of a shelf company, nominee and representation services, opening of bank accounts etc.

What is your company’s philosophy?
We take pride in the quality of all the services we offer.
We aim to help our client’s business find its path to success and growth by establishing and developing long term professional relationships based on doing the right thing in every occasion.
Our conduct is guided by our ethics and values which are the following:
1. Quality
2. Reliability
3. Professionalism
4. Confidentiality
5. Commitment
6. Respect
7. Flexibility
8. Responsiveness

Are there any special characteristics or aspects that will attract Russian businessmen to your firm?
We have invested in, and particularly specialise in the Russian market in an elite or boutique style way. We have Russian speaking staff and have a firm understanding of the Russian mentality. Our experience in the Russian market enables us to confidently provide top quality services in a timely manner aiming to exceed clients’ expectations and needs.

What would make a Russian businessman invest in Cyprus?
Over the years, Cyprus has established itself as an attractive + reputable international financial centre.
Cyprus combines a convenient strategic geographical location between three continents (Europe, Asia and Africa), low tax rates (corporation tax rate is currently 12,5%), as well as a long and growing list of international treaties for the avoidance of double taxation.

Cyprus is also a full member of the EU. Thus, Cyprus businesses have full access to EU markets with all the privileges this entails. Cyprus investment holding companies enjoy the additional tax advantage of dividend income and profit from the sale of shares being exempt from taxation. Cyprus has no withholding tax imposed on dividend income, interest, or royalty payments effected to non-Cypriot beneficiaries. Profits from overseas permanent establishments are tax exempt.

Additionally, Cyprus maintains a highly professional workforce to provide support to international business. The legal system is based on English common law and English is fluently spoken throughout the island. The accounting and legal sectors are highly developed and the country enjoys a high standard of living, excellent telecommunication facilities and infrastructure in a stable and low-crime environment with nice weather. Cyprus also enjoys excellent business relations and flight connections to the Middle East, a wide network of air-routes offering excellent connections to Europe, Africa, and Asia, as well as modern ports and first-rate sea connectivity.

Are there any hot news regarding taxation in Cyprus?
Three of the most important tax news concern Cyprus tax residency, Intellectual Property (IP) regime box and Notional Interest Deduction (NID).
(i) Regarding Cyprus tax residency, in summary, as of 1.1.2017, an individual is considered to be a Cyprus tax resident by remaining in Cyprus for only 60 days in total in any tax yr, provided he/she meets the following 4 conditions:

  • does not spend >183 days in any other country within a tax yr
  • is not a tax resident of another country within the same tax yr
  • carries on a business in Cyprus or is employed in Cyprus or holds an office in a Cyprus tax resident company at any time during the tax yr
  • maintains a permanent residence in Cyprus (either owned or rented)

It is worth adding that individuals who had not recently been tax residents in Cyprus previously, are considered to be non-domiciled in Cyprus meaning that they enjoy tax free dividends, interest and rental income.

(ii) Regarding the IP regime box, in a nutshell, 80% of income derived from either the use or sale of qualifying intangible assets, is exempt from taxation. Qualifying intangible assets, are assets which resulted from R&D activity, and have been acquired, developed or exploited in furtherance of a business (excluding IP associated with marketing).
(iii) Finally, NID is a decrease in a company’s taxable income allowed on new equity funds introduced into a Cyprus tax resident company, which are used in the operations of the company. The NID is calculated on the basis of a reference interest rate which is equal to the yield on the 10yr government bond of the country where the new funds will be or are invested, plus 3%, with the minimum rate being the yield on the 10yr government bond of Cyprus +3%.

Please give some Forecasts in the field of business collaboration between our countries
Our countries have a long and successful history of business collaboration which I believe will grow even stronger in the future.

Were you a participant of specific events, conferences, seminars, etc.?
I am regular participant, guest, exhibitor and/or speaker in many professional seminars, conferences and events in Cyprus as well as in the Russian Federation, Ukraine and elsewhere.

What is the secret of the success of your business?
As mentioned before, we take pride in the quality of all the services we offer. We constantly strive for excellence.
The moto I personally live by, is a quote from famous ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle who said the following:
We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then , is not an act but a habit.

Which businessmen are you inspired by and why?
I am inspired by numerous businessmen of our times. Warren Buffet, Richard Branson and Elon Musk are my top 3. If I had to choose only one I would say that I admire Mr Warren Buffet the most; I consider him to be possibly the greatest investor of all time so far. Qualities I admire most about him are integrity, patience, diligence and the unique ability to make business decisions while remaining completely a-motional i.e. completely free of emotion.

And the traditional question: what are your plans for the future?
To continue growing the practice, by helping as many businessmen as possible, to invest or continue investing in Cyprus.

 

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