As the world opens up to more business between countries, a golden opportunity has emerged for entrepreneurs. Business Visas help facilitate trade and business between different countries. These are typically short-stay visas and allow visa holders to conduct business in the countries they visit.
Citizenship By Investment
Citizenship-by-investment programs provide families with the privilege of acquiring an alternative citizenship, which in turn gives them the right to travel freely to various destinations and to settle in another country. Over 100 countries in the world have some form of investment migration legislation in place.
FREEDOM TO TRAVEL | ABILITY TO LIVE | WORK | STUDY
The investor must be below 55 years when submitting the application. They should have a detailed plan for the business or be willing to invest in an existing business in a certain country. They should have at least 65 points which are based on various factors that include age, education, previous business activities, and investment experience.
Businessmen who desire to invest abroad require all the necessary information about visa requirements and select a visa that would permit them to conduct business in an alien country.
MONTENEGRO | PORTUGAL | DOMINICA | IRELAND |
ST. LUCIA | VANUATU | ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA | GRENADA | ST KITTS
MONTENEGRO CITIZENSHIP BY INVESTMENT PROGRAM:
● The Montenegro citizenship by investment program was launched in 2019. Applicants can apply by investing in one of several government approved real estate development projects. The investment element ranges from €250,000 in the northern and central region to €450,000 in the coastal region. An additional government donation of €100,000 is required, plus application and due diligence fees.
● Montenegrin citizenship by investment and a second passport from a European nation is an attractive option for many of our clients. However, it must be noted that although geographically in Europe, Montenegro is not part of the EU. Although it is striving to meet the EU requirements for accession it is not expected until at least 2025. Montenegrin passport holders currently enjoy visa-free travel to over 137 destinations worldwide.
● Citizenship of an EU country carries a large premium in the market because of the settlement rights allowing citizens of any EU country to live anywhere within the EU. Obtaining citizenship in Montenegro at this stage for such a purpose would be speculative as to timescale and far from certain.
GOLDEN VISA PORTUGAL THROUGH PROPERTY INVESTMENT:
● The Portugal Golden Visa program has proven to be the most popular scheme in Europe with investors attracted to its flexibility and benefits. Launched in 2012 the investor visa program has been actively promoted internationally by the Portuguese government.
● An investment of €500,000 (or €350,000 reduced option) in real estate in Portugal will gain a residency permit for a family including dependent children.
● The golden visa can be renewed every two years providing the applicant spends two weeks in the country every two years
PORTUGAL PERMANENT RESIDENCY AND CITIZENSHIP:
● One of the most attractive options is the ability to apply for permanent residency and citizenship after 5 years without the need to reside in Portugal. In fact, the applicant and their family need only visit for two weeks every two years in order to renew the Portuguese Golden Visa.
● In Portugal citizenship can be granted without the applicant having resided in the country. However, the investor having acquired residency through the golden visa program will need to demonstrate ties to the country and pass a basic language test.
● Citizenship of Portugal and a second passport conveys the right to live, work and study anywhere in the European Union. The Portuguese residency card granted through the golden visa program allows the holder to travel throughout the EU Schengen zone.
DOMINICA CITIZENSHIP BY INVESTMENT:
● Citizenship by investment in Dominica is available through two options. The first is by making an economic contribution (donation) to the country under the government’s investor visa program. The second option available since January 2015 is through real estate investment.
● Dominica has become one of the most affordable and flexible second passport programs available. Until 1993 it was not possible to gain Dominican citizenship without residing in the country. The Dominican government changed that with the Economic Dominica Citizenship program whereby the need for residency to gain citizenship was waived
● Applicants making such a contribution are granted full citizenship for themselves and their family allowing visa free travel to over 152 countries including the UK and the EU Schengen zone.
IRISH IMMIGRANT INVESTOR PROGRAM
● Ireland introduced its original investor visa program in 2012. It was enhanced in 2013 and it now offers the opportunity for applicants from outside the European Union to gain Irish Residency through investing a minimum €1.0 million in an Approved Investment Fund.
● The golden visa program was made available to stimulate investment in Ireland and offer residency to dynamic business professionals with a proven record of success. This is an ideal program for High-Net-Worth families seeking residency in Europe and will be particularly attractive to businessmen, entrepreneurs and those seeking a top level of education for their children at world class universities.
● Investors must be of good character, demonstrate a minimum net worth of €2 million and have a clean criminal record.
ST. LUCIA CITIZENSHIP BY INVESTMENT PROGRAM
● The government of St. Lucia launched its citizenship by investment program on 1st January 2016. A qualifying investment must satisfy the minimum investment level in either the Saint Lucia National Economic Fund or an approved real estate project.
● The current minimum investments for donation to the fund are set at $100,000 for a single applicant, $165,000 for a couple and $190,000 for a family of four. For real estate the minimum is set at $300,000 for the main applicant.
● In May 2020 a temporary bond offering was launched offering an option starting at $300,000 for a single applicant with return of capital in five years. Government, Professional and Due Diligence fees apply in all cases.
VANUATU CITIZENSHIP BY INVESTMENT PROGRAM
● Citizenship by investment in Vanuatu is available to applicants who invest from $130,000 into a local development fund. Vanuatu, a chain of 80 islands in the south Pacific to the east of Australia is part of the Commonwealth. The official languages are English and French.
● Vanuatu has the only Citizenship by investment program in the Asia-Pacific Hemisphere. The program offers one of the fastest citizenship and second passport programs available for investors. The investment requirement is $130,000 for a single applicant and $180,000 for a family of four plus fees.
ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA CITIZENSHIP BY INVESTMENT
● The citizenship by investment program for Antigua and Barbuda provides a second passport to investors offering visa-free travel to over 160 countries including the UK, EU Schengen zone, Hong Kong and Switzerland. There are several options for investment to gain citizenship in Antigua. Investors can choose to contribute $100,000 to the Antigua National Development Fund.
● They can invest $1.5m in establishing a business ($5.0m for two or more investors) or invest $400,000 in a government approved real estate project (can be reduced to $200,000 for connected investors).
GRENADA CITIZENSHIP BY INVESTMENT PROGRAM
● The citizenship by investment program for Grenada is one of the newest programs available to investors. The Grenada investment visa program provides second citizenship in Grenada and a passport to investors offering visa-free travel to over 153 countries including the UK, EU Schengen countries and China. Grenada also offers access for its citizens to the USA E2 treaty investor visa.
● Applicants need to invest either $150,000 as a donation or $220,000 in a government approved real estate project and maintain the property investment in Grenada for at least 5 years.
ST KITTS CITIZENSHIP BY INVESTMENT PROGRAM
● The St. Kitts & Nevis Citizenship by Investment Program is the oldest of its kind in the world. Established in 1984 the program grants citizenship through donation or real estate investment to qualified applicants.
● The government requires investment of either a minimum donation of $150,000 to the Sustainable Growth Fund (SGF) or investment of $400,000 in real estate (can be reduced to $200,000 for connected investors) plus related government and due diligence fees.