Caribbean countries continue to drop the cost of their citizenship by investment programs. Following similar changes made in Saint Kitts & Nevis’ and Dominican immigration laws, Antiguan authorities have worked to make their passport more easily attainable as well.
Statistics show that cumulative annual investments in second citizenship and permanent residency acquisition reach up to $2 billion. The high demand for economic citizenship among the foreign investors is prompted by exceptional possibilities, such as:
- visa-free travel to a significant number of countries;
- the Plan B destination should any disturbances arise in the country of residence;
- convenient taxation policies and strict confidentiality.
The Antiguan citizenship by investment program is one of the most beneficial options among dozens of others offered by other Caribbean countries. Since the launch of the program in 2013, Antiguan authorities have approved over 2,000 applications from foreign investors. Striving to attract as many investors as possible in the highly competitive Caribbean market, the authorities are constantly honing the terms of the Antigua and Barbuda citizenship by investment program.
The benefits of the second passport of Antigua and Barbuda
- The possibility to travel the world with ease: passport holder is able to travel visa-free or get visa on arrival to 136 world countries and territories (including the Schengen Area, the UK, Hong Kong, Singapore, etc.), and get long-term visas to Canada and the US;
- A second home in Europe: a quiet haven to preserve and add to the existing assets. One can use their new passport to get the European Union residence permit;
- “Tax haven”: Antigua and Barbuda citizens are exempted from paying worldwide income, dividends, wealth and inheritance taxes.
- Personal data protection: The Antigua and Barbuda government do not disseminate any information on citizenship by investment program participants, neither do they disclose the data to one’s home country.
Antigua and Barbuda’s passport cost reduced by 50%
In October 2017, the minimum National Development Fund (NDF) investment threshold has been reduced by half for foreign investors who would like to obtain second passport by investing in the islands’ economy. At the moment, the necessary investment amount is $100,000; by slashing the price by half, the local government hopes to attract additional foreign capital and restore the country after Irma & Mary hurricanes caused $150 million worth of damage.
Antigua and Barbuda prime minister, Gaston Browne, said that in September and October 2017 they have received only 3 applications requesting citizenship through NDF investment. Meanwhile, the neighbouring Dominica started to make $50 million per month after similarly lowering the minimum investment threshold to $100,000.
In addition to the non-refundable $100,000 NDF contribution, some other fees must be borne in mind, such as:
– a government application processing fee: $25,000 for a family of 4 + $15,000 for each additional financially dependent family member;
– due diligence check: $7,500 for the main applicant, $7,500 for the spouse, $2,000 for each child aged 12-17, $4,000 for each dependent child aged 18-25, $4,000 for each financially dependent parent or grandparent aged 65 or older;
– passport fee – $300 for the main applicant and each dependent member of the family who is included in the application.
All additional costs are one-time payments.
The conditions of obtaining the passport of Antigua and Barbuda through real estate purchasing remain unchanged: investing $ 400,000 in a government-approved project. The obligatory property retention period is 5 years.
Antigua and Barbuda Citizenship-by-Investment: Terms and conditions
– The application for obtaining this Caribbean passport can be submitted only by authorized accredited agents (not by the applicant personally);
– The passport is issued for a 5-year period and is renewed afterwards. The investor will hold their status of a citizen for life, and the status can also be inherited;
– Prior to submitting documents, the due diligence check fee and 10% of the application processing fee must be paid for. The remaining sum is paid when the authorities approve the application;
– It is not obligatory to reside permanently on Antigua and Barbuda, but the holders of Antigua and Barbuda’s passports must spend at least 5 days there during the period of five calendar years after having obtained citizenship;
– The whole process of documents’ review, due diligence check, etc. usually takes from 3 to 5 months. The accredited agent informs the applicant of the final decision.
A foreign investor applying for the citizenship of Antigua and Barbuda must meet the following principal requirements:
– be 18 years of age or older;
– have a clean criminal record;
– have excellent credit score;
– have an excellent personal and business reputation;
– be of good health;
– be able to fulfill investment requirements.
Additionally, the principal applicant can include in the application form:
- Their spouse;
- Children under 26 who are not married, are full-time students, and are financially dependent on the main applicant;
- Children of 18 years of age and older with physical or mental disorders who are dependent on the main investor;
- Children of the main applicant or his or her spouse who is less than 18 years of age;
- Parents and grandparents of the applicant and/or their spouse who are 65 years of age and older and are financially dependent on the main applicant.
Tax residency peculiarities: What is tax residency and how to obtain it?
Antigua and Barbuda is the only country in the Caribbean region that offers tax residency to foreign investors who hold its passport. In just 5 months, the passport holder can obtain the Certificate of Permanent Resident of Antigua and assigned Tax Identification Number.
To obtain the above-mentioned permanent residency status, an applicant must:
– have an official permit for permanent residence (issued when one rents or purchases real estate in Antigua);
– stay within the country for at least a month during one year;
– declare annual profit of $100,000;
– pay $20,000 in tax annually.
The wide range of luxury real estate available on Antigua and Barbuda attracts businessmen and wealthy people from Canada, Great Britain and the USA. Nevertheless, today the most profitable option is to invest in the NDF, since the minimum investment has been reduced by half.
Upon obtaining the citizenship status of Antigua and Barbuda, one can also obtain a driving license and the documents necessary when opening a bank account.
Among all the Caribbean countries that offer passports in exchange for investment, the island of Antigua offers most attractive opportunities for tourism.
Antigua and Barbuda on the world map
Antigua and Barbuda is an island country with a population of slightly over 100,000 people. It is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, having gotten its independence status in 1981. Since 1982, offshore businesses and offshore banks have been actively developing on the islands.
Since 1994, it is possible to legally engage in gambling business. The government keeps up with the latest world economy trends and therefore is open to the option of making changes in the legislation – for instance, the option of using bitcoins as payment for public services, including the citizenship by investment program, is being considered.
The Antigua and Barbuda citizenship by investment program has been established in 2013. Since then, over 2,000 passports have been issued for applicants from all around the globe. Actress and TV presenter Oprah Winfrey, media tycoon and former Italian prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, British rock musician Eric Clapton, Italian designer Giorgio Armani are among the celebrities who have, most likely, obtained the Antiguan citizenship by investing in the local real estate. Moreover, the world-renowned Hollywood actor Robert De Niro, along with Australian developer James Parker, have invested in the construction of a large tourist complex on the Barbuda island.
We know what your winning options are
Obviously, Antigua and Barbuda isn’t the only country offering its citizenship to foreign investors. Well-off persons from all around the world are eyeing similar opportunities offered by Dominica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, and the Republic of Vanuatu (a South Pacific Ocean nation). When considering the options, remember that terms and benefits of each individual Caribbean citizenship by investment program are subtly different; some are designed to better suit individual applicants while others are beneficial in case the whole family is applying. Our highly qualified experts will help you choose what’s best for you based on your unique needs and demands. We calculate the costs, reveal all the features and peculiarities of citizenship by investment programs, and gladly provide legal support at every stage during the process of second passport acquisition.