Thinking to buy a citizenship?  These are close to 40 countries that offer citizenships in exchange for investments. These countries offer exceptional citizenships to investors who contribute economically to the development of the state, such as donations, investing in real estate etc

There are two types of citizenship for investment schemes, you should take a note of:

1. Citizenship by investment – These schemes offer instant passports within months in exchange or donation or buying a property

2. Economic Citizenship – These scheme offer citizenship of special interest to the state by exception. You must make an investment, that brings significant benefits to the country, creating jobs etc. You may need to establish genuine link to the country and some requirements such as residence conditions, speaking the language or cultural integration may be waived. This type of citizenship scheme may take lot of time (years) to acquire passport, after satisfying all necessary legal conditions.

1. Citizenship by Investment (CBI)

 CBI InvestmentPassport timeVisa freeResidence conditions
MoldovaEUR 100,0003 months122none
MontenegroEUR 350,0003 months123none
MaltaEUR 900,00014 months18212 months
CyprusEUR 2.15m (real estate6 months1736 months
St KittsUSD 150,000 (donation)3 months151none
AntiguaUSD 100,000 (donation)3 months1505 days
GrenadaUSD 150,000 (donation)3 months142none
DominicaUSD 100,000 (donation)3 months137none
St LuciaUSD 100,000 (donation)2 months145none
VanuatuUSD 150,000 (donation)2 months129none
TurkeyUSD 250,000 (real estate)3 months111none
BulgariaEUR 1m (bonds)15 months1692 year

2. Economic Citizenship

 

There are several interesting countries that have citizenship laws offering discretionary naturalization for investments.

 

Discretionary naturalization, which is different from ordinary naturalization, conferred to individual in the special interest of the state. Often this involves waiving residence and language requirements to naturalize for citizenship. This closely resembles the concept of ‘economic citizenship’.

 

These are 26 countries offer discretionary naturalization for economic investments in the interest of the state. Some notable countries  are Singapore, Brazil, Russia, Albania, Austria, Seychelles, Slovenia, Slovakia, Romania.

 

CountryArticle in lawProcedureConditions
AlbaniaALB 9(7)Naturalisation (discretionary)Person is someone whose acquisition of citizenship would be in special economic interest of Albania. Other conditions: no danger to security and defence of Albania.
ArgentinaARG 2(2)(3)Naturalisation (entitlement)Person has established a new industry or introduced a useful invention. Other conditions: see A06 (except residence requirement).
AustriaAUT 11a(4)(4)Naturalisation (entitlement)Person has been resident in Austria for 6 years and acquisition of citizenship is in the economic interest of the country. Other conditions: see A06.
BelizeBEL 12(a)Registration (discretionary)Person has, as an ‘economic citizen’, made a substantial contribution to the economy and/or well-being of Belize, or has rendered distinguished services to the country. Other conditions: good character and sound mind.
BrazilConst 12(2)a, EDE 113(5), RN no. 84, 2Ordinary naturalisation (discretionary)Person owns real estate in Brazil, or as a business man has invested at least the amount of R$150,000,00 (approximately US$75,000), and has been permanently resident in the country for at least 3 years immediately prior to the application and continues to do so. Other conditions: see A06.
Burkina FasoBUF 170(4)Naturalisation (discretionary)Person is an industrialist or business person, who has important investments or who brings funds, according to the laws in force.
CambodiaCAM 10-11; CAM 12Naturalisation (discretionary); Naturalisation (discretionary)Person has invested an amount of 1,250,000,000 Riels in Cambodia and is resident in Cambodia. Other conditions: see A06 (except 7-year residence requirement); Person has donated an amount of 1,000,000,000 Riels for the restoration and rebuilding of the Cambodian economy. Other conditions: see A06 (except the requirement of residing in Cambodia and having resided there for 7 years).
Cape VerdeCV 12(3)-(4)Naturalisation (discretionary)Person has realised or offers guarantees that will make investments that will unequivocally increase the opportunities for employment and contribute to the development of the country. Naturalisation under this provision does not grant political rights, including to vote or be elected or to exercise public functions on a permanent basis.
Central African RepublicCAR 28(3)Naturalisation (discretionary)Person has made important real estate investments. Other conditions:
ComorosN 1982 (complete text is relevant)Naturalisation (discretionary)Person is an ‘economic partner’ of Comoros, investing a minimum sum to be fixed by the budget law each year.
Dominican RepublicConst 18(7), DOR 1cNaturalisation (discretionary)Person has been resident in the DR for at least 6 months uninterrupted, and has founded urban or rural industries or owns real estate in the country. No residence requirement if person owns more than 30 hectares of land in the country, but permission must be granted to establish domicile in the country.
MauritiusMAU 9(3)Naturalisation (discretionary)Person has invested at least USD 500,000 in Mauritius. Other conditions:  (except residence period may be waived).
MexicoMEX 20(1)dNaturalisation (discretionary)Person has been resident in Mexico for 2 years (requirement can be waived) and has provided outstanding services/products to Mexico or employed entrepreneurial activities in the country.
NicaraguaNIC 9Naturalisation (discretionary)Person has been permanently resident in Nicaragua for 2 years, and has established an industry or exercises an activity that contributes to the economic, social or cultural development of the country. Other conditions: renunciation of citizenship of another country.
PakistanPAK 20, and secondary legislationRegistration (discretionary)Commonwealth citizens who transfer PKR 5 million worth of foreign exchange to Pakistan, may apply for citizenship. After confirmation from the State Bank of Pakistan of the transaction of the said amount, an immigrant visa is issued. A Pakistan Citizenship Certificate is granted upon arrival in the country.
PhilippinesCommonwealth Act no. 473, 3(2)Naturalisation (discretionary)Person has been continuously resident in the Philippines for 5 years and established a new industry or introduced a useful invention in the Philippines. Other conditions: see A06.
RomaniaROM 8(2)dNaturalisation (discretionary)Person has invested 1 million euros or more in Romania and is born in and resident there, or has been resident in Romania for 4 years. Other conditions: see A06.
RussiaRUS 14(2)g;RUS 14(2)h;

RUS 14(2)iRUS 14(2)g;

RUS 14(2)h;

RUS 14(2)iRUS 14(2)g;

RUS 14(2)h;

RUS 14(2)i

Naturalisation (discretionary);Naturalisation (discretionary);

Naturalisation (discretionary)Naturalisation (discretionary);

Naturalisation (discretionary);

Naturalisation (discretionary)Naturalisation (discretionary);

Naturalisation (discretionary);

Naturalisation (discretionary)

Person conducts an economic activity in Russia for at least 3 years and the activity generates revenue in the amount of 10 million rubles. Other conditions: see A06 (except residency requirement);Person holds 10% of shares of a Russian company (in Russia) whose assets are at least 100 million rubles, with mandatory insurance payment of 6 million rubles per year. Other conditions: see A06 (except residency requirement);

Person worked in the Russian Federation for at least 3 years, and his or her job is on the list of designated professions. Other conditions: see A06 (except residency requirement).Person conducts an economic activity in Russia for at least 3 years and the activity generates revenue in the amount of 10 million rubles. Other conditions: see A06 (except residency requirement);

Person holds 10% of shares of a Russian company (in Russia) whose assets are at least 100 million rubles, with mandatory insurance payment of 6 million rubles per year. Other conditions: see A06 (except residency requirement);

Person worked in the Russian Federation for at least 3 years, and his or her job is on the list of designated professions. Other conditions: see A06 (except residency requirement).Person conducts an economic activity in Russia for at least 3 years and the activity generates revenue in the amount of 10 million rubles. Other conditions: see A06 (except residency requirement);

Person holds 10% of shares of a Russian company (in Russia) whose assets are at least 100 million rubles, with mandatory insurance payment of 6 million rubles per year. Other conditions: see A06 (except residency requirement);

Person worked in the Russian Federation for at least 3 years, and his or her job is on the list of designated professions. Other conditions: see A06 (except residency requirement).

Saint Vincent and the GrenadinesSTV 9aRegistration (discretionary)Person has made an important contribution to the cultural or economic growth of St Vincent for at least 5 years. Other conditions: good behaviour, knowledge of English and of duties of a citizen.
SeychellesSEY 5CNaturalisation (discretionary)Person has invested the equivalent of USD 1 million and has supported him or herself for 11 years in Seychelles. Other conditions: pass language test, and not sentenced to more than 1 year imprisonment.
SingaporeConst 123(1)cRegistration (discretionary)Person is an industrialist investing a minimum amount of $250,000 in Singapore. Other conditions: see A06 but the the “10 out of 12 years” requirement may be waived if the person resided in Singapore for 5 out of 6 years, or at the discretion of the Government.
SlovakiaSLK 7(2)(b)Naturalisation (discretionary)Person is someone of special benefit to Slovakia in the area of economics. Other conditions: see A06 (except residence requirement).
SloveniaSLN 13Naturalisation (discretionary)Person is an adult whose acquisition of citizenship is beneficial for the country for economic reasons. Other conditions: see A06 (except renunciation requirement and knowledge of Slovenian language).
Sri LankaSRI 13A(1)(a)i, 15, 18Registration (discretionary)Person has been granted a 5-year visa or endorsement under the Immigrants and Emigrants Act, has been registered in a Resident Guest Scheme for foreign investors, and has made a substantial contribution to the economic development of the country. Other conditions: intent to continue to ordinarily reside in Sri Lanka, renunciation of citizenship of another country, and oath of allegiance. A maximum of 200 persons may be registered under modes A24 and A26 in any year, and 1,000 in the aggregate.

Source: GlobalCIT 2016

 

Our Opinion

In our opinion, we highly recommend CBI programs, because it is simple, fast and easy application process, without any bureaucratic or administrative issues.

 

  • If you want the cheapest, we recommend caribbean citizenship programs such as Dominica or Antigua. Grenada passport is the best if you can spare little bit of money.
  • If you have the money, we would highly recommend EU passports such a Malta, Bulgaria or Cyprus. Investing in a Montenegrin passport wont be bad at all considering, the country plans to become full EU member state soon. After that the passport becomes much more valuable
  • If you have the patience, go for Irish passport, you need the apply. You can apply for Irish immigrant investor scheme, for EUR 500,000 (donation) or EUR 1 million (investment funds), and wait for five years to become Irish citizen. All the wait will be so much worth it, as Ireland has a very powerful passport, and one the best countries the world, to live, study and work.