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CEO JournalMoney and Wealth

5 Points About Citizenship By Investment Schemes

Citizenship by Investment (CBI) schemes have been doing rounds in the past few years. Investors from across the globe are eyeing such schemes offering lenient citizenship requirements in exchange for investment in select forms. Often referred to as Golden Visas, they are essentially a gateway to citizenship and hence, the name. Yet, there are a lot of discussions, and often heated debates, regarding the legitimacy of these schemes. Our focus, however, is not on the controversial aspect today. Rather we shall be exploring the various basics of the scheme. You should read along if you are curious about the various creative ways of acquiring citizenship. I am going to enumerate a few pointers on the CBI schemes. From what they are to what benefits they accrue, you shall know all the important details below.

  1. What exactly is a CBI scheme
    A CBI scheme is a government-approved scheme primarily aimed at attracting foreign investments. Under the said scheme, applicants are typically required to invest a certain sum in certain forms within the local jurisdiction. In consideration of the investment, the applicant will be eligible to apply for fast-track acquisition of citizenship. Either the acquisition duration will reduce considerably, or the applicant will be immediately granted citizenship.
    There is also a Residence by Investment (RBI) scheme based on the same principle. However, unlike the CBI, the scheme does not immediately grant citizenship. In most cases, the acquisition process remains intact, but what is fast-tracked is the grant of a residence permit.

  2. Common forms of investment 
    Most CBI schemes across the globe share the areas of investment. But, there may be differences nevertheless. Generally, investment options include real estate investment, a donation to a designated fund, or investment in a local business or establishment of a company in the country. For instance, Antigua’s qualifying investments cover donations to the National Development Fund (NDF) or West Indies Fund Option. They also cover investments in real estate property or investments in the business. You will most likely find a minimum investment sum in any CBI scheme.

  3. Extension of benefits to family 
    CBI schemes are attractive because they are usually designed to extend citizenship benefits to the family members added to the application. However, let me note that there is always a restriction on the type and number of family members. Generally, the scheme allows the addition of the spouse or partner, dependent children under 18, and the applicant’s parents. Siblings may be added to the application, but not many schemes include such an option.

  4. General eligibility criteria 
    While investment is the scheme’s primary condition, other eligibility conditions must be met. These include:

      • The applicant must be above 18 years of age.

      • He must come with a clean background with no criminal antecedents. For the same, a police clearance will have to be submitted.

      • He must possess sufficient funds to sustain himself and his dependent family members in the country.

      • All the sources of his income must be legal, the proof of which must be submitted.

      • Additional fees are stipulated for every family member added to the application. The proof of payment must be submitted.

      • Certificate of kinship, such as a marriage certificate, if applicable. ‘

  1. Processing time 
    The idea is to attract investors through a fast-tracked grant of the citizenship process. But, the processing time may differ. For instance, St. Lucia grants the quickest citizenship under the scheme; in about 46-50 days. Vanuatu grants citizenship within 60 days. Turkey, however, may take up to 100 days. Most Caribbean countries run the scheme grant citizenship the fastest and have a seamless processing framework. Europe, however, maintains such schemes but has a larger processing framework and may not be as seamless as its Caribbean counterpart.

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CEOWORLD magazine - Latest - Money and Wealth - 5 Points About Citizenship By Investment Schemes
Ayushi Kushwaha
Ayushi Kushwaha, Staff Writer for the CEOWORLD magazine. She’s spent more than a decade working for various magazines, newspapers, and digital publications and is now a Staff Writer at The CEOWORLD magazine. She writes news stories and executive profiles for the magazine’s print and online editions. Obsessed with unlocking high-impact choices to accelerate meaningful progress, she helps individuals and organizations stand out and get noticed. She can be reached on email