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India – Cyprus bilateral relations

India – Cyprus bilateral relations


Cyprus–India relations are defined by the diplomatic bonds between the Republic of Cyprus and the Republic of India. These bilateral relations are fortified through diplomatic missions, with India maintaining a High Commission in Nicosia, while Cyprus maintains its High Commission in New Delhi. 

Historical Perspective

The historical backdrop of Cyprus–India relations traces its roots back to India’s support for Cyprus during its struggle for independence from British colonial rule. Diplomatic relations were formally established on February 10, 1962, a mere two years following Cyprus’ declaration of independence. 

India’s military contributions to United Nations peacekeeping operations in Cyprus have been noteworthy. Notably, three Indian Generals have assumed the role of Commanders of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) since its inception in 1964. The late Maj. General Kodandera Subayya Thimayya, who served as the UNFICYP Force Commander is commemorated with a road named after him in Larnaca. Cyprus honoured his legacy in 1966 by issuing a commemorative stamp. 

Cyprus has actively supported India in international forums, such as the India–United States Civil Nuclear Agreement and India’s aspirations within the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). 

High-level visits have further strengthened diplomatic relations. Former Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s visit to Cyprus in October 2002 resulted in Cyprus expressing its support for India’s quest for a permanent seat on the UN Security Council. In October 2009, President Pratibha Patil visited Cyprus, followed by President Tassos Papadopoulos’ visit to India in April 2006. 

Of unique note is the historic link between Cyprus and India through Lila Erulkar, the former First Lady of Cyprus and the wife of President Glafcos Clerides. Born in Ahmedabad and of Indian Jewish descent, her father, Dr. Abraham Erulkar, served as Mahatma Gandhi’s personal physician in London in September 1946. The High Commission of India in Nicosia is situated on a street named after Indira Gandhi, reflecting these enduring connections. In New Delhi, an avenue bears the name of Archbishop Makarios III. 

Commercial and Investment Cooperation

Bilateral trade between Cyprus and India reached EUR 76.5 million in 2015, with Cyprus importing EUR 64.5 million and exporting EUR 11.1 million worth of goods to India. The trade primarily revolves around steel and iron products. 

Cyprus has emerged as a significant foreign direct investment (FDI) investor in India. Between April 2000 and September 2015, Cyprus cumulatively invested a total of $8.328 billion, ranking as the eighth largest source of FDI in India. Notably, these investments have predominantly focused on the construction and real estate sectors. 

Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA)

The Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement between Cyprus and India was revisited and revised in 2016, underlining the commitment to facilitating economic and trade relations. 


Cyprus–India relations continue to thrive, bolstered by a shared history, diplomatic exchanges, trade, and investments. As both nations look towards the future, these ties are poised to evolve, creating opportunities for further collaboration and growth.

To know more about bilateral relations between India and Cyprus, please download our booklet.

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