What is the best Citizenship by Investment for you?

After spending some time to understand different immigration policy in each country, and cooperating with the Cyprus partner. I could conclude what is the normal way to get citizenship by investment.

Investment Option
1) Property
2) Government bond or securities
3) Open company
4) 1+2+3 = minimum investment amount
5) deposit money in the central bank
6) Donation to the country (which you will never get money back, but the donation amount normally is cheaper than investment amount)

Once you are making Citizenship by investment, what you shall look at?
  • What kind of residency you will really get?
Many people don't understand what is the difference between PR (Permanent Resident) and Citizenship. Citizenship allows you to use the additional identity to travel around the world freely.

PR, meaning Permanent Residency, allows you to stay in that country, but once you traveling around the world, customs officer only cares your passport, so your citizenship still the final factor for how many countries you could visit without applying for the visa. Therefore, sometimes PR investment program seems a lot cheaper than citizenship, but if it is not what you are looking for, then why you waste your money for that investment? and sometimes PR of some European countries doesn't guarantee you to stay in another European country.

  • How long you will get a new identity?
This question was asked by every applicant because it really matters.
Lots of Chinese applying green card (PR) for USA EB5, much Chinese agency said applicant will get a notification after 10 years, although it is a possible time frame, it is really difficult to identify if this is a scam.
  • How long you need to keep the investment in the country?
The sooner the better, meaning the shorter time to need you to put your money in that country, the sooner you will get your freedom, so you could know how soon you can have free cash flow 
  • What is your exit strategy?
Normally, the country will require you keep the investment in their country for certain years after you acquired the citizenship because the government is not stupid, the purpose to offer the citizenship by investment is to grow their country's economy. The shorter the better for you, for example, if you want to get the citizenship by opening the company, sometimes the government will request you to release employment after certain years. Ex. if you invest property in Cyprus, you can sell after 3 years, but if you open a company in Cyprus, you need to keep the company and employees at least 5 years. 

Also, you need to look at what is the minimum amount of the investment for you, after you sell your investment? Take Cyprus for example, after 3 years, you need to keep 0.5M EUR property in Cyprus, each country has a different amount for you to keep that new identity.

  • What is the government minimum investment amount?
This is what everyone cares the most in the beginning. The more popular the country, the higher the chance that they are not even offering the Citizenship by Investment program. For example, German, they prefer you spend your time in their country and get nationality naturally. The UK is still top rank for many people, but they don't offer citizenship, the only PR. Singapore is the same, Global Investor Programme only offers PR to the investor.
  • What is the administrative cost?
Lawyer to protect your escort account, draft documentation for you, application government fee
  • How many family members you could bring with you for free?
Normally, you can bring your wife and children with you, just the matter what is the oldest age of the children that the government can accept? The older the better for you. Few of the country might conclude your parents and brother/sister.
  • How often and how long you need to travel to the country?
It is so called Immigration Jail. Many of my clients are very interested in USA EB5, but the problem is they need to stay in the USA more than half year, if they can't fulfill this requirement, their investment is a waste.
  • The reputation of the country?
Sometimes there is some island country, they offer you the investment amount really cheap, but if you are not so desperate, maybe you shall consider if this country's reputation is good enough for you to show-off.
  • How many visa-free countries you could acquire?
You can check the biggest rival of Immigration Industry, the number is slightly different.
Nationality Index & Visa Index by Henley & Partners
Passport Index by Arton Capital

If you have any question, please feel free to leave your comment, or discuss with me.