The citizenship by investment industry has rapidly been gaining more awareness. Political instability, Brexit, aggressive changes to taxation policies, and the election of new political leaders who are inclined towards restrictive immigration policies, have encouraged more and more people to seek for a second nationality to somehow protect themselves from these radical changes. In the search for freedom of movement and safety, more people are increasingly considering a second citizenship.
In the past couple of years several governments across the world have carefully restructured their citizenship by investment programmes allowing affluent investors to financially contribute to their country’s economy, obtaining residency status or a second nationality in return.
Increasingly more, governments started to carefully analyze the investors’ needs and are tailoring their citizenship programmes to fit those demands. This has significantly helped to attract more investors into these programmes and create more awareness towards the citizenship by investment industry.
Some of these countries grant instant citizenship while others require years later to show proof of residency to have the right to apply for their citizenship. Through ‘fast track’ programmes applicants seeking an alternative nationality can obtain it in only a few months depending on the country’s legislation.
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Greece introduced further amendments to their law whereby investors who purchase a property worth Euros 250,000 in Greece and reside in the country for seven consecutive years can apply for citizenship.
Although the Greek residency by investment programme was launched in April 18, 2013, before the recent change to its legislation, investors were not able to qualify for citizenship. Therefore, now not only this is a great opportunity to invest in the weakened Greek real estate market but also to obtain European citizenship whilst getting a good return.
Such adjustments to the regulations performed by the different countries with the aim to enhance their citizenship by investment programmes and make them more attractive, result in an significant increase of direct foreign investments into these nations.
Over the course of the year further citizenship by investment programmes are expected to be subject to amendments in the search for becoming more competitive. One thing is certain, the citizenship by investment industry is rapidly growing while gaining the attention of affluent investors who appreciate the multiple benefits of obtaining a second nationality.