A second residency or citizenship is now a necessary component of one’s global legacy.
Holding a second passport or even a residence permit from another country is similar to holding a life insurance policy. You hope you never have to use it. Yet should the need arise, you are certainly glad you had the foresight to ensure your family is well protected. In today’s ever-changing world, it is a smart move. It’s prudent to have a backup plan for your family through a second citizenship or residence permit.
We are seeing an increase in offshore investment in stable currencies which can be done with a second residence or citizenship. This not only secures your family’s financial legacy, but also their freedom of movement.
Many countries offer Residency-by-Investment Programmes (RBIs) including Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Portugal, the UK , and the USA. Essentially, you make an investment in the country and in return, you receive a residence permit or visa. The type of investment can vary between passive investments in government bonds or real estate, or be active investments in a business. Programmes also vary greatly in terms of their flexibility with some such as Greece, Malta and Portugal requiring very little physical presence. Other programmes offered by Canada, UK , and USA require you and your family to move to the country and live there full time. The length of time that should be spent in the country in order to qualify for citizenship varies from five to 20 years.
Citizenship-by-Investment programmes typically require you to make a significant investment or contribution to a country in return for citizenship with little or even no residence requirements. The qualifying investment is dependent on the country with some permitting real estate to qualify while others require a non-recoverable contribution or a combination of the two.
CBI programmes are ideally suited for those wishing to remain living in their home country but who want to obtain a second citizenship/passport and all of the benefits that accompany it, including visa-free travel to over 130 countries and the assurance of being able to swiftly leave should the political or social environment suddenly become precarious. While typically more expensive than RBI programmes, CBIs come with increased benefits including the right to live and work in multiple countries.
We have seen a sharp increase in demand for CBI programmes which has resulted in more countries offering them. The two EU CBI programmes are found in Cyprus and Malta while the five Caribbean programmes are Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, St Kitts and Nevis, and St Lucia. Other programmes include Vanuatu and Turkey although their popularity remains tepid. In addition, we expect Moldova and Montenegro to be launching CBI programmes in 2019.
Which type of programme is best suited for your needs? Residency or citizenship? Contact us today for a free and in-depth consultation and review of your options.