All companies operating in Cyprus are obliged to adhere to the employment legislation of Cyprus. Detailed information on labour laws and regulations can be found on the website of the Ministry of Labour, Welfare and Social Insurance at www.mlsi.gov.cy
The minimum salary in Cyprus starts at €870 per month for shop assistants, nurse’s assistants, clerks, hairdressers and nursery assistants and rises to €924 after six months’ employment. This salary refers to the wage of salespersons, office clerks,nursing assistant, child care assistant, infant care assistant, school assistant and general caretaker. For security personel the lower wage limit is at €4,90 gross per hourly rate and after 6 months of continous employment fro the same employer rises to €5,20 gross p/h. For cleaners the lower hourly paid rate is €4,55 gross and after the 6 months period under the the same employer reaches the €4,84 gross.
The maximum weekly hours of work are 48 hours, including overtime. The normal pattern of working hours in Cyprus is 40 hours per week. Additionally, the employee is entitled to at least 11 continuous hours of rest per day. If the daily period of work is greater than 6 continuous hours, the employee is entitled to a 15-minute break. The employment legislation has a provision for a minimum probation period of at least 26 weeks which may be extended up to 104 weeks. In the event of termination of employment during the probation period, there is no minimum notice period.
Annual holiday and Pubic holidays
According to the type of work schedule, employees are entitled to annual holiday leave of a minimum of 20 days, when working on a 5-day week basis, (or 21 days if the company is exempted from the 8% Holiday Fund Contribution), or minimum 24 days when working on a 6-day week basis, (or 25 days if the company is exempted from the 8% Holiday Fund Contribution).
The following days are public holidays:
1 January (New Year’s Day)
6 January (Epiphany)
Green Monday (movable date)
25 March (National Day)
1 April (1955-1959 EOKA National Day)
Good Friday (movable date)
Easter Monday (movable date)
1 May (Labour Day)
Whit Monday (movable date)
15 August (Assumption Day)
1 October (Independence Day)
28 October (WWII National Day)
24 December (Christmas Eve)
25 December (Christmas)
26 December (Boxing Day)
Social security system
The social security system of Cyprus provides several benefits, such as maternity allowance, sickness benefit, unemployment benefit, old-age pension, invalidity pension, widows’ pension, orphans’ benefit, benefits for employment accidents and occupational diseases.
Cyprus has concluded social security bilateral agreements with the United Kingdom, Greece, Egypt, Canada, Quebec, Australia, Austria, Slovakia, Swiss Confederation, Czech Republic, Netherlands, Bulgaria, Serbia and Syria. The bilateral agreements that Cyprus has concluded with member states of the EU have been replaced by the EU Regulations 883/04 and 987/09, which coordinate the social security systems of the member states.
The Social Security contributions of employees are withheld by the employer from the monthly salary paid to employees. These contributions along with the employer contributions should be paid no later than the end of the calendar month following the month that the salaries relate to. The Social Security contributions of self-employed individuals are paid quarterly. Social insurance contributions are restricted to a maximum amount that is increased annually.