The Montenegrin Government extended its highly-popular Citizenship-by-Investment programme for another year, ending on the 31st December, 2022. The decision came on the evening of the programme’s expiry, offering you another chance to obtain Montenegrin citizenship.
The programme started off slow due to technical delays but began gaining tremendous interest in 2021, and although the government does not publish official statistics regarding Citizenship-by-Investment applications, professionals in the field estimate the total number to be around 700 applications in the last year alone.
The government did not provide an official reason for the extension. However, the decision is welcomed by HWNIs looking for second citizenship as well as the government-approved real estate projects being developed under the Citizenship-by-Investment programme.
The programme has also played a large role in bringing in foreign direct investment into Montenegro, most likely another factor considered in the decision to maintain the programme for an additional year.
Changes to the programme accompanied the extension announcement, notably concerning the donation amount.
The minimum real estate investment remains at EUR 250,000 in the north of the country and EUR 450,000 on the coast or in the country’s capital Podgorica.
Investors previously had to donate EUR 100,000 to the government alongside their real estate investment; however, applicants must now donate EUR 200,000 to qualify, bringing the minimum investment threshold of the programme to EUR 450,000.
The government will continue to divert half of the new donation amount to a fund for developing underdeveloped regions, while the remainder will now go to a government-run fund geared towards encouraging innovation.
The government will also maintain the list of currently approved projects but will not endorse any new real estate developments under its Citizenship-by-Investment programme.
Lastly, Montenegro now permits de facto/common-law relationships, including same-sex couples, to apply for the Montenegro Citizenship-by-Investment programme.
We do not expect these changes to deter any potential applicants, as Montenegro’s unique programme remains attractive by providing HNWIs with the chance to obtain citizenship from a country that could potentially join the EU within a few years.
An issue that interested investors must take note of is the availability of their preferred real estate developments, as the limitation of projects has created an “early-bird” situation. Those who promptly begin the process will have their choice of a range of qualifying properties to choose from, whereas those who wait until the last minute might find their preferred destination sold out.
By extending the life of its Citizenship-by-Investment Programme, the Montenegrin government has given investors, who previously thought they missed their chance, another opportunity to get a passport of a European country that provides visa-free access to over 120 destinations worldwide, including the entire EU Schengen Area.
Our Montenegro office located in Podgorica has in-depth knowledge of the country and decades of experience assisting private clients. We have carefully vetted all the qualifying real estate projects to ensure our clients are making an informed and sound purchase. We pride ourselves on helping our clients achieve their goals with the utmost transparency and professionalism.
Obtaining a Montenegrin passport through investment takes as little as 4 to 6 months, and we handhold our clients each step of the way.
Contact us today to book a consultation with one of our client advisors to get your application started before the programme closes.