Requirements for the publication of a local newspaper/magazine
No previous permit from any authority is required for the publication of a newspaper/magazine in Cyprus by a citizen of the Republic or an EU member state. It is, nevertheless, necessary prior to the publication of a newspaper/magazine that Press and Information (PIO) Officers check in the PIO magazine/newspaper database if an identical or similar title exists.
Next, an affidavit containing the required details is signed by the applicant before a District Court Registrar of the Republic. This is then submitted to the Press and Information Office (PIO), which issues a receipt accordingly. In the event of a change of ownership, the new owner of the newspaper/magazine must submit another affidavit to the PIO to obtain a new receipt.
In accordance with the Press Law, if the owner of a newspaper/magazine is a company, a person must be appointed as Responsible under the Law. His/her appointment is made through a statement by the owner which is submitted to the PIO at least three days before the newspaper is published. The statement must contain the appointee’s name and address and must name him/her as the person responsible for the management and control of the newspaper/magazine. It should be stressed that the person responsible under the Law must be a member of the company’s board of directors.
All copies of newspapers published in Cyprus must print on the top part of any page the name and address of their owner, of the person responsible under the law, as well as the place where the newspaper is printed.
In accordance with the Press Law, newspaper magazine/owners must also, for archiving purposes, deliver to the PIO within three days of publication a copy of the newspaper/magazine carrying their signature or that of a person authorized to sign on their behalf.
On having fulfilled the provisions of the law, the owner of the newspaper/magazine acquires the right to own the name of the newspaper. This name or any other resembling it may not be used by any other newspaper.
A newspaper/magazine owner loses the right to own the title of a newspaper if s/he does not begin publication of the newspaper/magazine within a year from the time the statement was submitted, or the permit for publication of the newspaper/magazine was issued, or if s/he ceases publication for more than a year.
Fees charged by the Government for processing an application and issuing a receipt to a citizen of Cyprus or of a country member of the EU are € 51,26. Also, the sum of €8,54 is charged for issuing a statement certifying the registration of a newspaper or a magazine. This statement can also be used to ensure reduced postal fees for sending the newspaper/publication to subscribers.
An owner who fails to conform to these provisions will be committing an offence punishable by a fine. At the same time a court order is issued whereby the owner is called upon to comply and submit the sworn statement within ten days. If the owner does not comply with the court order, the Minister of the Interior is authorized to prohibit publication of the newspaper until such a statement is submitted.
Failure to comply with these provisions carries a fine.
Procedure for publishing a foreign newspaper/magazine in Cyprus
Foreign nationals wishing to set up a company in Cyprus for publishing a foreign newspaper/ magazine in Cyprus must first register a company with the help of a law firm at the Department of the Registrar of Companies and Intellectual Property.
This Department will require that certain conditions pertaining to the establishment of companies be met. In addition, there are specific conditions requiring that editorial and printing activities must be carried out in Cyprus. For more details about the registration procedure you may visit the website of the department www.companies.gov.cy
After acquiring the license for the establishment of a company in Cyprus, the PIO checks if another identical or similar publication exists.
Then, the foreign applicant must complete a sworn statement (an affidavit) and sign it before a District Court Registrar. The affidavit is a required document that must be submitted to the PIO prior to the publication of any newspaper/magazine in the Republic of Cyprus. The owner of the affidavit may be either a company or a physical person.
Together with the submission of the affidavit, it is necessary to submit a copy of the first three pages of the applicant’s passport as well as a short CV. Also the memorandum of establishment of the company and the certificates issued by the Department of the Registrar of Companies and Official Receiver must be submitted to the PIO for the examination process of the application.
If the owner is a company, a statement appointing a person responsible under the Law is also required. The appointed person must be a member of the company’s board of directors.
One of the conditions is that the printing and publishing activities must be carried out in Cyprus.
The permit is not transferable to another person or company.
The entire procedure may take up to three months to complete.
Fees charged by the Government for processing an application and issuing a permit to foreign nationals of non- EU origin are € 170,86 . Also the sum of €8,54 is charged for issuing an official statement to the owners that certifies the registration of the title of the newspaper/magazine.
When the newspaper/magazine is published, the owner or the person responsible under the Law must supply the PIO with signed copies within three days from publication.
The permit may be revoked in the event that any of these conditions are breeched. The decision is made known to the owner of the printing office and the permit is returned to the Minister of the Interior. Violation of the above constitutes an offence punishable by a fine, in the event of conviction and all copies of the newspaper/ magazine are confiscated.
Free circulation of newspapers/magazines
All newspapers and magazines are allowed to circulate in the Republic without restriction. For this reason, distribution agencies and other outlets must ensure that newspapers are freely made available to the public without discrimination irrespective of the political leanings or views of a newspaper. For the purpose of the law, the term "newspaper" also includes magazines and any publication published regularly.
For further information contact:
Symela Sidiropoulou tel.: 22801196 email@example.com
George Loucaides tel.: 22801237 firstname.lastname@example.org