Slovakia has the most expensive citizenship by investment program (CIP) in the world. It is also one of the most discretely available scheme. This scheme is known as Major Investor scheme, where investors can be naturalized for economic investment, who are of special interest to Slovakia
- Slovakia joined the European Union 1 May 2004 and joined the Eurozone on 1 January 2009. It is also a member of the Schengen
- Slovakia is famous for highest number of castles and caves anywhere in the world.
- Sixth largest car producer in the European Union
- Citizens of Slovakia are provided with universal health care, free education and one of the longest paid parental leaves in the world
- Slovakia has very powerful EU passport with visa free access to Canada, United States and Australia
Why invest in Slovakia?
Slovakia is an ideal investment destination because of its political economic stability strengthened by the common European currency Euro, competitive taxation system tax, and availability of highly skilled and educated workforce offering the highest labour productivity in the CEE region with favorable labour costs.
- Safe investment environment: political and economic stability
- EU member state, already participates in schengen area
- Central European hub connecting east to west & favorable geographic location with great export potential
- Fastest growing Eurozone member within the last 10 years (CAGR)
- CEE Leader in Physical Property Rights Security (PRA) and labor productivity and in TOP 10 hard working countries (OECD)
- Slovakia ranks ninth worldwide in adapting to new technologies & high innovation potential
- Large selection of industrial land & offices
- Excellent infrastructure network with attractive investment incentives
Slovak Citizenship may be granted to persons who have significantly contributed to the benefit for the Slovak Republic on economic, scientific, technical, cultural, social or sport activities under a discretionary facilitated procedure pursuant to Article 7(2)(b) of Act on Slovak Citizenship where citizenship is granted directly by the Minister of the Interior
Foreigners must meet the following investment conditions to become a major investor
- A capital investment for the development of the enterprise of at least EUR 100 million*
- The investment is economically significant or at least 300 new jobs will be created by the company,
- The investment made in the public interest of Slovakia as per decision of the Government of the Slovak Republic.
*The investment may be eligible for regional aid in Slovakia.
Act No. 175/1999 Coll. also sets out rules for issuing of the so called “Certificate of a Major Investment”. The Certificate is issued by the Ministry of Economy in cooperation with SARIO agency upon request of the concerned business.
Investors must also meet clean criminal record condition under this scheme. If an applicant lived abroad, a clean criminal record certificate is also requested from the country in which the third-country national has been resident for more than 90 days during the last three years for six consecutive months.
According to this provision, Slovak citizenship can be granted to a foreigner who has significantly contributed to the benefit of the Slovak Republic in the area of economy or if it is for another reason in the interest of the Slovak Republic. In this case major investor applicant is exempt from the condition of a continuous permanent residence in the Slovak Republic for at least eight years and also from the condition to speak or understand Slovak.
The Ministry of the Interior decides on every application for granting Slovak citizenship within a period of 24 months from its filing
Major investors can also be granted residence permit or permanent residence permit directly for investment including all family members. According to the Ministry of Interior, the fact that a third country national has been granted permanent residence in the interest of the Slovak Republic does not mean that they can access directly the discretionary naturalization procedure.
Rights for Investors
The Slovak Constitution in Chapter II establishes the fundamental rights to which citizens and permanent residents including their family members are entitled. For example:
Right to work
Right to education
Right to access the healthcare system
Right of association
Right to judicial and other legal protection
Some of the above rights can be limited in accordance with separate laws to those TCNs who are granted a temporary residence for purpose of family reunification.
The competent authority to carry out the due diligence and security checks are the OCPs.
The OCPs in reviewing the application for a temporary residence takes into account the “public interest”, particularly in terms of security, the economic interests of the Slovak Republic, the contribution of the TCN’s entrepreneurial activity to the economy of the Slovak Republic and the protection of public health. The OCPs also request the opinion of the Slovak Intelligence Service and Military Intelligence Service during the process of reviewing the application
Checks on the origin of funds have to be carried out in accordance with the Slovak legislation on anti-money laundering in cooperation with the Police Presidium (UHCP). Such checks may include, for example, examining bank statements or balance sheets
In total, six foreign investors were granted citizenship, based on the investors residence permits according to Article 7(2)(b) of Act on Slovak Citizenship in the period 2012-2017.
Source: Ministry of Interior / EU commission report on investor citizenship schemes
Under ordinary naturalization in Slovakia, foreigners must have legally lived in Slovakia with residence permit for 8 years.
Slovak does not allow dual citizenship except in certain cases. Russians becoming slovak nationals must give up their russian nationality.
Slovakia has one of the most powerful travel documents in the world. As of 2019, the slovak passport had visa free access to 181 countries including USA, Canada, Australia, UK and full rights to live and work in EU member states.