There are several countries that offer the option of citizenship by investment. You can acquire second citizenship in these countries as well as a passport by the host country by investing in their economy.
Citizenship by investment programs provides individual citizenship quickly as well as legally than the standard immigration processes. These programs offer a wide variety of benefits like visa-free travel, passport of the host country, lifetime citizenship etc, and in a time frame as small as 3 months.
Going through the normal route may take 6 months to a year for an individual to acquire citizenship. These programs enable the individual applying to rapidly obtain citizenship with no mandatory minimum residency period as well as certain tax benefits in the new country.
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These programs can offer either citizenship by investment also known as a golden passport or residence by investment which is referred to as a golden visa or any combination of the two with immediate residence followed by accelerated citizenship.
To apply for this program, applicants have to fulfill multiple qualification criteria. Investments can be made via a number of ways including purchasing qualifying real estate, investment in a qualifying business, a contribution to government funds, or creation of a set number of jobs.
Let's look at some countries that offer this opportunity:
1) Austria is the only western European country that offers foreign nationals the opportunity to become citizens through the Austria Citizenship By Investment Program. It requires a minimum investment of 3 million euros. The investment could be in an active firm or business, to a government fund, or in venture capital. It offers an EU passport, visa-free travel, as well as citizenship without any prior residence in the country.
2) Malta - To apply for Malta’s Citizenship by Investment Program an individual must make a minimum contribution of 750,000 Euros to the government’s national development fund. Also, he/she will be required to invest another 150,000 euros in government-approved financial instruments and commit to a purchase or rent of a property (minimum 350,000 euros) in the country for five years.
After the investment and one year of residency, an individual can apply for Maltese citizenship and obtain a European passport. A Maltese citizen can live, study, and work anywhere in the EU.
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3) St. Kitts and Nevis - The Citizenship by Investment Program in the country was launched in 1984 and is the first-ever citizenship by investment program. Under this program, a minimum donation of $150,000 to the Sustainable Growth Fund (SGF) is a major requirement.
Also, you invest $400,000 in real estate in the country to get citizenship. After you have completed your investment in the program, you can get your passport within six months. In St. Kitts and Nevis, there is no direct taxation so its residents are exempt from personal income tax, estate duties, inheritance taxes, etc.
4) Dominica - The citizenship-by-investment program in Dominica was established in 1993. Through this, investors can get full citizenship for themselves as well as their families. There are 2 available options for the Citizenship by investment program in the country. Firstly, an individual can make an economic contribution (donation) of a minimum of $100,000 to the Government's Economic Diversification Fund.
Secondly, he/she can make that investment in the country's real estate. The second option has been available only since 2015. Once you make your application, you can expect to get your passport in three months. It wasn’t possible to get citizenship in the country without residing in the country till 1993. Dominica citizenship by investment program is one of the cheapest programs available around the world. Holders of Dominican passports can travel freely to around 140 countries, including the UK and Schengen zone.
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5) Turkey - To become a citizen of the Republic of Turkey, an individual has to make a minimum investment of $250,000 in real estate. He/she can also invest a minimum capital of $500,000 in a company for citizenship. Finally, an individual also has the option of depositing $500,000 in State investment instruments or state banks operating in the country but in this case, you have to keep the investment for at least three years.
Creating jobs for at least 50 people is another option that can get your Turkish citizenship. The country levies no taxes on income earned abroad. Also, no tax is to be paid if you stay in the nation for less than six months per year. After filing the application, it generally takes around 3-6 months to get citizenship.
6) Antigua and Barbuda - To become a citizen of this nation, an individual can choose from 3 available options. Firstly, contributing a minimum of $100,000 to the Antigua National Development Fund. Secondly, investing $1.5 million in establishing a business. Thirdly, investing $400,000 in a government-approved real estate project. After you get your passport, you can travel visa-free to 150 nations. It requires only 5 days per year of residency by the applicant. After filing the application, the process can take up to 3-4 months.
7) Grenada - To become a citizen of this country, an individual can donate $150,000 to invest $220,000 in a government-approved real-estate project. It is required for the individual to keep the property for at least 5 years before selling. The citizenship by investment program in the country was launched in 2013 and takes a precessing time of 3-4 months
These are a few countries that offer citizenship by travel to investors. These countries do not only provide second citizenship but also prove to be tax havens for investors.