Top Citizenship & Residency Programmes For South Africans 2019

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Looking to obtain second citizenship or investment residency abroad as a Plan B? Discover the best Citizenship and Residency by Investment Programmes available to South Africans in 2019, or contact us now for a free consultation.

1. TURKEY Citizenship By Investment Programme? (Y)

The investment requirement for the Turkish CBI Programme was reduced to only $250,000 in September 2018, making it one of the world’s more affordable second citizenship programmes. The investment property can be sold after a period of 5 years, and the investor’s spouse and dependent children under 18 being eligible to apply for Turkish citizenship as well. Dual citizenship is recognised, and you are not required to declare your assets or income in other countries.
The programme has surprised many industry insiders, having issued over 1,000 Turkish Citizenships to third country nationals since launch.

2. PORTUGAL
Citizenship By Investment Programme? (N)

The Portuguese Golden Visa Programme is essentially a long stay, initially temporary visa that is renewable for up to five years, after which the holder can become eligible to apply for permanent residency and eventual citizenship. While the programme launched with a €500,000 minimum property investment requirement, a number of lower threshold options were introduced subsequently.

Third country, non-EU investors now also have the option to invest either €350,000 in properties in lower density areas, or to purchase shares in a hotel development in a low density area from only €280,000. During 2019, an Angel Visa Programme was also introduced, with contributions from only €175,000 inclusive of professional service fees.

3.NETHERLANDS
Citizenship By Investment Programme? (N)

The Netherlands Investor Visa Programme, also referred to as the Netherlands Golden Visa, is a relatively unknown EU residency programme with a minimum capital investment requirement of €1,250,000. It is important to note that this programme does not allow for property based investments; instead, a capital investment must be made into a Dutch company or Netherlands based commercial enterprise. Alternatively, non-EU investors can also contribute to a Dutch seed fund which invests in suitably vetted Dutch start-ups.

The investment must meet the key requirement of being valuable to the Netherlands’ economy, and should create at least 10 full time positions over a period of 5 years. The underlying investment must be maintained for the full duration of investor residency.

In addition to serving as a pathway to EU residency, the Netherlands also offers significant tax incentives to foreign investors and start-up companies wishing to establish themselves in Holland. Get in touch to find out more.


4. GREECE
Citizenship By Investment Programme? (N)

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The Greek Golden Visa Programme’s rise in the CBI space has been meteoric, with the programme proving very popular among Chinese investors, in particular. A key benefit of the Greek programme is the fact that both commercial and residential properties can be purchased, or a combination of the two, as long as the total investment totals €250,000 or more. Inclusive of professional service fees, the total initial cost associated with obtaining a Greek Golden Visa comes to approximately €300,000, making it one of the EU’s most affordable Golden Visa Programmes. And given the recent property boom experienced in the country, an investment in Greek property may well make decent financial sense too.

5. CYPRUS
Citizenship By Investment Programme? (Y)

For non-EU investors looking for a fast and easy road to EU Citizenship, the Cyprus Citizenship By Investment Programme may be a highly attractive solution. Yet with a minimum investment requirement of €2 million or more, this is indeed a product for high net worth individuals only.

6. SPAIN
Citizenship By Investment Programme? (N)

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The Spanish Golden Visa Programme, as with the Portuguese programme, has increasingly been under criticism from more nationalistic leaning political forces in these countries.

While the programmes offer many similar features, the Spanish investor programme requires a minimum investment of €500,000 or more, whereas the Portuguese programme makes provision for property investments from only €280,000 in lower density areas.

Your spouse and dependent family members can be included in this residency application, making it an excellent Plan B destination. Yet for these seeking to settle abroad and optimise their worldwide taxation obligations, there are a number of more tax friendly alternatives to consider.

 

 

7. USA
Citizenship By Investment Program? (N)

The US EB5 Programme, also referred to as the US Investment Green Card or American Dream Visa, is one of the most popular visa investment programmes in the world. The programme is credited with creating in excess of 85,000 full time jobs for American workers, and by the end of 2019 would have raised more than US$ 5 billion.

The number of EB5 visas issued per annum is capped at 10,000, with application regression already applicable to countries such as India, China and Vietnam. With employment levels in the USA currently being relatively high, it is widely expected that the minimum investment requirement for obtaining and EB5 investor visa will be raised from $500,000 to as high as $1.3 million before the end of 2019. EB5 Investments can take the form of a passive investment in an approved Regional Center Project.

Alternatively, a direct investment of $1 million can be made into a qualifying commercial enterprise incorporated in the USA. In this case, it is expected that the company will have created 10 full time positions within 2 years. The latter criteria must be met before an EB5 residency permit will be granted.

8. MALTA
Citizenship By Investment Programme? (Y)

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The Maltese CIP Programme, formally known as the Malta Individual Investor Programme (and referred to as the MIIP or Malta IIP) is one of the most acclaimed programmes of its kind. Established in 2014, the programme offers applicants the ability to acquire EU citizenship in one of the most stable EU economies.

The application procedure is formally managed by Identity Malta, a government agency. The programme’s investment requirement for a single applicant is threefold:
1. A contribution to Malta’s national economic development fund (€650,000)
2. The purchase of Maltese stocks or bonds (€150,000)
3. The acquisition of a property in Malta (€350,000) in high density areas.

For a married couple, the donation requirement goes up to €675,000. The investment component must be maintained for a period of 5 years or more.

9. GERMANY
Citizenship By Investment Programme? (N)

Germany does not have a formal investor visa programme or Golden Visa programme per se. Instead, non-EU investors can gain German residency through the application of German immigration laws related to self-sufficiency and/or employment and by taking up en eligible form of economic activity.

Golden Visas SA and our associates can give you access to a regionalised investment avenue that ticks all the relevant boxes. In the main, you’ll be required to buy an investment property to the value of €250,000 or more off-plan, while also making an entrepreneurial investment into a German regional development fund.

Given that Germany is one of the top global economies situated in the heart of Western Europe, this programme offers excellent value for money. Contact us to find out more.

10. ITALY
Citizenship By Investment Programme? (N)

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Italy’s version of the Golden Visa is an Investor Visa Residency Programme available to non-EU investors. The programme enables applicants and their families to acquire in Italy for an initial period of 2 years, after which the visa can be renewed for an additional 3 years. After 5 years, the visa is valid indefinitely.

In order to obtain the Italy Investor Visa, you’ll need to choose one of the following investment pathways:

1. Make an investment of €500,000 or more in an innovative Italian startup
2. Invest €1 million in a philanthropic initiative to the benefit of Italian citizens
3. Invest €1 million in an Italian Limited Liability Company (LLC).
4. Invest €2 million in Italian governmental bonds.

Processing can be done in approximately 30 days, and there is no need to make the investment before your official government approval or rejection is received; a declaration of your commitment on the use of funds is typically sufficient when applying.

11. EGYPT
Citizenship By Investment Programme? (Y)

Approved by the Egyptian parliament in 2018, the Egypt Citizenship By Investment Programme (Egypt CIP) will enable third country investors to obtain Egyptian citizenship by making a deposit of $420,000 or more with any of the country’s state owned banks. Recent legislative changes now also enable foreign investors to obtain Egyptian citizenship directly – without the need to have held residency status for a period of 5 years or longer.

As of July 2019 this programme is not yet accepting applications, yet its formal launch is imminent.

 

12. Kazakhstan
Citizenship By Investment Programme? (N)

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As of July 2019, the Kazakhstan Residency By Investment Programme has not yet been launched. According to reports by leading publications in the investment migration space, the programme, once launched, will help drive foreign investment into Kazakhstan with a view to position the country as one of the worlds top 30 most developed nations by 2050.

Kazakhstan’s emigration and tax regime shows strong correlations with that of Dubai, which also offers free trade zones. The investment requirement has not been confirmed yet, however it is understood that it will likely be between $100,000 and $200,000. Economic residents would instantly enjoy the rights associated with permanent residency, including access to health insurance services, retirement benefits and social security.

The tax regime in Kazakhstan is expected to be a key draw card of the programme: According to the tax regulations associated with the Astana International Financial Center (AIFC), foreign investors with Kazakhstan residency would only be taxed on their local income; not on their worldwide income. Yet with the tax rate in the AIFC being 0%, foreign investors could take up permanent residency, start a business and pay no taxes whatsoever.

Citizenship donations from $100,000. Fees from $25,000. Contact us today for a free consultation.

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