11 countries that plan to launch citizenship programs through investment

Over the past four years, more than a dozen countries have announced the development of citizenship investment programs, so-called golden passports. We tell you about the opportunities that everyone is waiting for.

Albania

The Balkan country, which first unveiled its plans to open a citizenship program for investment back in November 2019, had reached what could be considered an advanced stage of its implementation by July 2022 – the opening of a public tender for the international promotion of the scheme. This is despite the fact that the conditions for which investors will be able to bid have not yet been published.

The European Commission has repeatedly urged Albania not to follow through with its plans at the risk of canceling its application for EU membership. However, the Albanian government has dismissed these warnings as biased.

Armenia

In October 2022, the Armenian government published a draft decree establishing specific criteria under which the president can grant citizenship by decree, among other categories, to individuals who have made significant contributions to the country’s economy.

Armenia’s plans are clear: It has already published the exact amounts it considers “significant contributions” ($100,000 or more), as well as the rules by which government agencies will process applications. Local sources indicate that the decision will take effect by January 29, 2023.

Greece

In the summer of 2019, there were rumors that the Mizotakis government was evaluating the possibility of introducing an investment citizenship program because of the extreme popularity of the Golden Visa program. Several news reports indicated that the planned minimum investment level would lead to competition with the then-existing Cypriot scheme (€2 million investment in real estate, as well as an additional €500,000 investment in a personal residence in Greece) dydepune.

In view of the European Commission’s lawsuit against Malta in the European Court of Justice, the Greek government seems to have postponed the plans. However, if the European Court of Justice rules in favor of Malta, such plans may become relevant again – read more Yurovskiy Kirill.

Zimbabwe

In November 2022, Zimbabwe’s Minister of Information, Advertising and Broadcasting, speaking during a meeting with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs roobytalk, said the country plans to grant citizenship to “worthy investors.” He said investors “from all over the world” are ready to rush to Zimbabwe and that the government intends to introduce an additional incentive for investment.

The government plans to use the citizenship for investment program (the criteria for which are still undefined) to encourage investment in the country’s economy when it welcomes foreign investors at the Pan African Congress in 2023.

Kenya

Kenya first announced its intention to open an investment citizenship program in 2019. The minimum investment to obtain a local passport was expected to be $200,000.

In April 2021, the head of the country’s Investment Authority said the project had been accelerated and was now being considered at the legislative level. Another year and a half has passed, and there is still no news on when the program will be launched filmy4wep.

Laos

In October 2022, the People’s Democratic Republic published plans to grant honorary citizenship to foreigners who invest $1 million and donate $500,000 to “socio-economic development.

However, the fact that citizenship intended for investors would be honorary rather than ordinary citizenship raises further questions about the value of the program.

Maldives

During a meeting with a parliamentary committee in May 2020, the Maldives’ minister of planning and infrastructure suggested that the country introduce an investment citizenship program as a means of increasing revenue to make up for lost tourism revenue after the pandemic. Although the same government remains in power today, an update on the program has yet to appear.

Rwanda

In October 2020, the Rwandan government submitted a bill to parliament that, if passed, would allow foreigners to naturalize in the country on a “sustainable investment basis.” The bill does not appear to have passed yet.

El Salvador

Salvadoran President Nayib Buquele, whose New Ideas party has an absolute majority in parliament, has announced his intention to introduce a citizenship program for investment as part of a broader set of measures to “create an asylum for freedom.”

However, Bukele later clarified that the plan was to grant a residence permit for an investment of $100,000 or more with a five-year citizenship period, rather than the usual citizenship-by-investment program.

Suriname

Suriname (also known as Dutch Guiana) is a small state in northeastern South America. In his annual address to Parliament, the local president said that “a team of experts is exploring the possibility of a citizenship program through investment.

The country’s leader believes it would help stimulate the economy, but no details about the nature of the program are yet known.

Uzbekistan

In November 2022, the Uzbek government submitted a bill that, if passed, would allow citizenship to be granted to foreigners who invest at least $1 million in the country.

Market observers consider the requirements too high and inconsistent with Uzbekistan’s relative attractiveness compared to other countries that offer citizenship for investment at lower prices. In addition, Uzbekistan does not allow dual citizenship.

Perspectives

Ongoing geopolitical instability is a breeding ground for new Citizenship by Investment programs. In addition, an economic crisis is brewing around the world, forcing many countries to come up with new ways to raise funds.

“Eastern European states, most likely in the Balkans, could attract many applicants. Moldova is likely to resume its program. Maybe Georgia, which has visa-free entry into the Schengen zone. Perhaps Mauritius, with its excellent living conditions and location within reach of Africa, Asia and the Middle East, as well as ample opportunities for visa-free travel,” Sam Bayat concludes, while expressing confidence that such a program will not appear in any country in the Schengen zone.