By Kate Cornwell …
I have pondered for a few weeks on whether to write this article, but now I feel a need, as most days when I meet someone, I am told that they or their friends are leaving the island and either going back home or to another sunny country! Some of these people have astounded me as they had always said this is their home and how much they love it and the people and this is where they will end their life. So Why?
Recently I spoke to a person who works in one of the banks who said daily foreigners are coming in and withdrawing their monies – WHY?
The main reason is the new residency laws, which I totally do not comprehend. I can understand the government wanting to make more monies and although we, over 60 years of age, were pardoned from having to have residency with a ‘the gentleman’s agreement’, this was obviously looked at and then decided that this ruling had to go! Ok I get that!
So yes the new ruling is putting more coppers into the government which they need and I just hope they use it for their people – but I digress! What I do not understand is their policy logic of the monies required.
So if you own a property you only have to prove you have one times the minimum wage to live on but if you rent, you have to prove THREE times – why why and why?
So I rent, and if you look at most of the rents of my friends they are between £300-400 pounds – that’s approx the minimum wage, so why do we have to prove that we have an income of twice the minimum wage on top, after paying our rent! Absolutely ridiculous.
After paying my rent, I can live very happily on 3,900TL per month, that’s looking after my dogs, cats, running a car, paying all my taxes, eating out, meeting friends and having a drink- thus supporting the restaurants and bars. Shopping in your supermarkets as I personally do not go to the south to shop.
There are hundreds of foreigners who support your charities, fundraise for cancer, SOS, the elderly, one organisation the NCCCT, totally run by foreigners and volunteers, raise monies for your State hospitals so that they can afford needed equipment. There are hundreds of wonderful people who bring in so much funding for your people – to help Northern Cyprus! So WHY are you alienating the people who love this island and forcing them to abandon their dream, as now so many CANNOT prove the monies required for residency.
I am heartbroken to hear of so many lovely people leaving – I am lucky that I can JUST prove the monies needed but if I couldn’t I would have to leave and I have been here now for 15 years.
I came to Cyprus in 1972 to finish my A levels at the English school and was here during the 74 war. Myself and my family were evacuated back to England, as much as I didn’t want to go, but my mother was concerned as I was 18 and it was the mini skirt era!!! So home we went! My mother returned back in 1975 and set up a cosmetic factory with a Turkish Cypriot. Her life was here and sadly she died a year ago, but she would have been in Northern Cyprus 45 years. My mother was also one of the first people to get a Kimlik card – actually from Denktash himself – what a wonderful man he was. So up until 15 years ago, this was always my second home and now is totally my home as long as I can prove your ridiculous residency policy.
Please, Interior Ministry and government, rethink the objectives that have been set out for foreigners to reside in this country.
Can’t you see, that with all these people leaving the island your economy will slump drastically. Can’t you see that with all these people leaving, the funding raised for so many charities will decrease drastically, which supports so many needing people – YOUR people.
Please wake up and see the light before it is too late. I beg you with all my heart.
The new Temporary Residency Regulations were published in October 2019 and the British Residents’ Society reported below on 1st November 2019, (click here for full details)
” For applicants who are 60 years or over, and renting property to live in, the same procedure as outlined for (owners of property) will apply, except for the first applicant, sufficient income equivalent to that of three (3) times the current minimum TRNC wage which would be 9,450TL (at 1st November 2019) would need to be proved, with the second and any subsequent applicant under the Family visa, not having to prove sufficient income.”
We understand when this aspect of the Regulation was formed the requirement was for (5) times the minimum wage but subsequently reduced to (3) times the minimum wage.
Perhaps we should recognise that those seeking Temporary Residency status who have purchased properties have invested in the TRNC and those that just wish to rent have made no investment apart from local bank accounts so this is why there is a differential in proof of income.
Now that the UK has left the EU we are seeing many reports of how foreigners will have to prove their suitability to be entitled to work or live in the United Kingdom and who would disagree with that?