The US has listed as Cyprus as a ‘country of primary concern’ with regard to money laundering across the world. A 2015 report by the US State Department noted that Cyprus was used primarily as an intermediary by criminals seeking to launder money.

Under the pressure of the US the Central Bank of Cyprus (CBC) has issued a statement where instructed all banking institutions not to open new bank accounts, or renew existing ones with companies that are regarded as “shell” or “letter box” companies.

The announcement states that all trading companies that have no substance (effective place of business and management) will not be permitted to maintain bank accounts in Cyprus. including the trading companies incorporated in “tax havens”.