New changes have been introduced to the Golden visa schemes of Portugal and Greece with amendments to respective golden visa laws in 2019.
The Greek Government has put forward amendments to tighten the golden visa program regulations against abuse and money laundering. Under the new amendments put forward in the Hellenic parliament, the new rules will apply from Dec 24, 2018.
- POS transactions: Point of Sale (POS) retail transactions using credit or debit cards will be banned for golden visas
- Applicants must make full €250,000 payment either by bank check or transfer to bank in Greece.
- Installment payments for property investment will not be allowed
- Resale of property within 5 years will not be allowed. Property sales will require documentation from immigration office if obtained under golden visa permit.
- New Green visa option added for golden visa for €500,000 investment in ecological projects in energy, agriculture, organic farming and eco-tourism projects
- New simplification rule when applying for residence permits or D visa from the embassy in their country
- Portugal also reduced path to citizenship to five years, instead of six years this year for nationals of certain countries.
- The Government to introduce new permanent residence permit option for golden visa holders who maintained their investment for five years. The permanent residence permit for Golden Visa holders will be “exempt from a minimum stay of two months a year in Portugal
- Applications for renewal of residence permits must be submitted between 90 and 30 days prior to the expiry of the existing permit.
Investors who has opted for the capital transfer of ateast one million euros may change their type of investment , but may not decrease the amount of the investment
- Properties built 30 years ago must submit documents proving date of construction issued by authorities.
- Investments in shares of venture capital funds and in companies based in Portugal that help create jobs.
SEF from Jan 9, 2019 be issuing the new Permanent Residence Certificate of the European Union, identical to the national Citizen’s Card in format, substrate and contents which contains the physical securities internationally recommended for this type of document. The new model of the card intends to empower citizens of the European Union, living in Portugal for more than five years, with an identification document complying with the minimum security standards and allowing to ensure their holders the associated rights and advantages identifying them clearly and stringently before national and international authorities and other entities with whom they will interact. All residence documents of citizens from the European Union, and of their family members, will present from now on a new standard format of an “ATM Card”.