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Economic citizenship and costs of security checks

When applying for foreign citizenship, you have to undergo due diligence checks in any case. Below we compare the costs of such checks in different countries that have national citizenship-by-investment programs.

citizenship by investment

The growth of the popularity of economic citizenship programs is obvious. The pandemic has made a larger number of wealthy individuals look for effective ways to protect their overall security. They appreciate the following advantages that economic citizenship of a foreign country brings:

  • Freedom of movement within a region of the world (such as the European Union, for example) and the accessibility of numerous visa-free destinations;
  • Personal security and asset protection;
  • Political, economic, and social stability in the host countries;
  • Access to social benefits and medical care in foreign countries;
  • Educational opportunities;
  • The possibility to own real property (residential or commercial) in a foreign country; 
  • The ease of starting a foreign business;
  • The tax benefits that many host countries offer;
  • The opportunity to clear of all suspicions on the part of international partners (having a second passport means having a spotless reputation, as persons with a criminal past cannot possibly obtain foreign citizenship).

Let us dwell on the last item in the list above. All countries offering citizenship by investment check the prospective candidates for trustworthiness.

The due diligence procedures that they carry out cost money. Some immigration agents will claim that these side costs are insignificant but is it always true? Let us compare the costs of due diligence checks in different countries. As you will see, sometimes the side costs can be quite considerable.

Comparing the costs of due diligence checks in different countries offering economic citizenship

The largest portion of the amount required to obtain foreign citizenship is always the investment into a foreign economy proper. Different countries offer different investment opportunities. Some of them accept non-refundable donations only while others allow making returnable investments into real estate, government bonds, or a business venture. There are also countries where you can make a fixed-term bank deposit or create new jobs in order to qualify for citizenship.

However, there are additional expenditures involved too and the costs of the due diligence checks may be notable especially if you are applying for foreign citizenship for all members of a large family. Governments of the host countries cannot afford granting their citizenship to unreliable foreigners who can potentially cause trouble to them. So they run serious due diligence checks by employing international detective agencies that have to be paid for doing the job. Prospective candidates’ biographies, their sources of income, and their criminal records are carefully inspected.

Please note that you cannot acquire foreign citizenship unless you can bring a clean criminal record.

This is why you have to add the costs of the due diligence checks when choosing the most suitable citizenship-by-investment program. The table below compares these costs in nine countries that offer economic citizenship to foreign nationals.

Single applicantDependent family members (additional payments required)
Antigua$7,500$7,500 — spouse;$2,000  — dependent 12-17 years of age;$4,000 — dependent above 18.
VanuatuCosts includedCosts included
Grenada$5,000Spouse, dependent child, parent, brother, sister — $5,000.
Dominica$7,500 Spouse – $4,000;Any dependent family member above the age of 16 – $4,000.
Malta15,000 eurosDependent family member – 10,000 euros;Sponsor – 15,000 euros.
Saint Kitts$7,500Any dependent family member above the age of 16 – $4,000.
Saint Lucia$7,500 Any dependent family member above the age of 16 – $5 000.
TurkeyCosts includedCosts included
Montenegro7,000 eurosFamily of not more than 4 members – 10,000 euros;Additional 1,500 euros per every extra family member.

Sources: official websites of the agencies monitoring the national citizenship-by-investment programs (Citizenship by Investment Units / CIU).

As you can see from the table above, Malta has the highest cost of due diligence checks. At the same time, the Maltese passport is an exclusive product and its overall price is considerably higher than the prices of Caribbean passports. Besides, you have to realize that the EU authorities are not quite happy with Malta granting citizenship to foreign nationals so the Government bodies in the country have to be especially careful when issuing the passports to people from outside Europe.

It also has to be noted that the costs of due diligence checks are already included in the overall amount of investment required in Vanuatu and Turkey.

Grenada deserves a special note as well as the security checks cost a little less in this country in comparison to what its Caribbean neighbors charge.

Please note that there can be no discounts on the due diligence check costs in any of the countries.

Preliminary security checks conducted by the immigration agents

No national Government allows filing applications for citizenship directly to the immigration authorities. In all cases, a licensed immigration agent needs to be hired who will submit the application on your behalf.

The agent is a valuable intermediary indeed as he or she will conduct preliminary security checks and tell you if you qualify for citizenship of the country or not. In other cases, the agent will warn you about certain risks that you may encounter. For instance, you may have to supply some more conclusive proof of the legality of your sources of income than you initially intended.

InternationalWealth portal partners with immigration agents in all countries that grant citizenship to foreigners for investments. Our partner agencies will conduct all the required due diligence procedures following strict ethical norms. The reports that they compile as a result of their investigations will contain the entire necessary information in a clear form.

If the immigration agent is positive that you will be granted citizenship of the country that you are applying to, you can take it as a 100% guarantee of the success of this endeavor. If your application document package lacks certain papers, the agent will tell you so. If you do not stand the slightest chance of obtaining foreign citizenship, the immigration agent will inform you about it as well thus saving your time and money.

Passport sellers check buyers and buyers should check sellers too!

A second passport is a popular product on sale and the demand for it is growing. The possibility to obtain foreign citizenship without leaving the comfort of your home is especially valuable in the lockdown times.

However, the popularity of second passports also attracts different fraudsters to the business and you have to be careful when choosing an agency to cooperate with. This means that you have to take certain measures to protect yourself from possible traps. Below please find a brief list of such measures.

1. Visit the official website

All countries granting citizenship by investment to foreigners have agencies (Citizenship by Investment Units, CIU) that administer the immigration programs. The CIUs have official websites where all the requirements to the candidates for citizenship are described. They also contain descriptions of all the procedures involved in foreign citizenship acquisition.

If any changes to the requirements occur (and they do occur on a regular basis), the official website will contain this information. Suppose that somebody offers you a discount on foreign citizenship. You can ascertain that obtaining the discount is possible indeed by logging on to the website and finding out what conditions you have to meet to become eligible for the discount. If you do not find any mentions of any discounts at the official website, you must grow suspicious of whoever told you that the discount was available.  

2. Watch out for red flags

If you see an ad selling foreign citizenship for less than US$ 100,000, you have to know that the ad is deceitful. Antigua and Barbuda, St Lucia, and Dominica grant citizenship to foreigners in exchange for a donation of US$ 100,000 and that is the lowest amount of donation that exists. Besides, you have to add the costs of the due diligence checks, the application processing fee, and the immigration agent’s fee. Therefore, you will end up paying more than US$ 100,000 for foreign citizenship in all instances. Please beware of cheaters!

3. Take effort to choose a reliable immigration agent

Even though all immigration agents in the host countries hold licenses, some of them are more professional than others. Offshore Pro Group cooperates only with reliable immigration agents and we will be happy to help you choose the best immigration opportunity and the most professional immigration agent who will ascertain that your dream can come true.

4. Be prepared for a long application process

Many countries that grant citizenship to foreigners in exchange for investments are small island states that seek to attract foreign direct investments. At the same time, they do not want to irritate the big and powerful states by granting citizenship to a mafia boss or a tax evader, for example. Thus, they have to check each candidate for their citizenship with great care. And the checking takes time and effort.

Please be ready to collect a large number of various application documents and have them legalized/ apostilled/ notarized, etc. You have to realize that paying money is not the only thing that you have to do to acquire foreign citizenship. An experienced immigration agent will help you ascertain that your application document package is complete. Offshore Pro Group, in its turn, will be delighted to assist you in choosing the best foreign citizenship option and then we will put you through to a reliable immigration agent in the chosen country.

It has to be admitted that acquiring foreign citizenship is a long and hard process. But the result that you can achieve is precious indeed. Protect your assets and your future by purchasing foreign citizenship without delay!

Professional assistance in acquiring foreign citizenship

InternationalWealth portal is a leading investment immigration website. We are proud to provide the corresponding services to wealthy individuals from different parts of the world.

We have partners in the Caribbean basin countries and European countries granting citizenship by investment to foreign nationals. We will be happy to give you a free personal consultation on acquiring foreign citizenship. Our experts will help you evaluate the available immigration programs and choose the one that looks most appealing to you personally.

Please send us an email to the address that you can find at the top of the page, use our live chat or contact us via a messenger. You are welcome to request a free consultation or ask us any questions related to acquiring foreign citizenship. We always reply promptly!

What are the methods of acquiring foreign citizenship by investment?

Different countries offer different opportunities. Some of them accept only donations, others accept donations as well as returnable investments, still others require making both a non-refundable donation and a returnable investment. Some states offer the opportunity to make a fixed-term bank deposit or purchase Government bonds that can be sold back after a certain period.

How fast can I acquire a second passport?

The application processing time is different in every country granting citizenship by investment. Normally, the procedure takes between two and six months. To become a citizen of Malta, however, a whole year is required.

Can I acquire foreign citizenship for all members of my family?

Yes, you can file a family application for foreign citizenship whichever country you apply to. The required donation/ investment amount will normally be higher in this case, but the cost of each foreign passport that you acquire is going to work out lower than in the case of filing an individual application for foreign citizenship.

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