Second Passport and CBI as Your Lifeboat

With a valid travel document in your pocket allowing its holder to roam the world or change citizenship where necessary, your life prospects are much brighter. No doubt, obtaining such an ID together with CBI abroad in the middle of a political turmoil is not as easy as one-two-three. Syrian, Afghan, and Yemen refugees were the first to bear it on their backs. With 2 passports in their bag, CBI holders enjoy a lucky opportunity to move to safer and quieter regions if faced with any issues in their country of residence. Acting wisely, they spare themselves and their loved ones any accompanying risks.

Second passport - saving lives

Why is a second passport, CBI, or a residence permit abroad worth your time and efforts?

  1. It comes with a complete freedom to change their residence for the holder thereof.
  2. Security is a great bonus both CBI and residence permit holders as well as their families enjoy.

The 2 root causes above encourage people to consider obtaining CBI in a safer and more stable jurisdiction.

It is a wise move to be prepared for any unprecedented developments, should you feel like the danger is looming. Stay alert and get the following documents ready to urgently acquire your CBI, residence permit or refugee status, where it becomes necessary:

  • birth certificate
  • clean police certificate
  • marriage or divorce certificate (if any)
  • diplomas, certificates, or any other documents to prove your education degree(s)
  • language certificates.

CBI program applicants are at liberty to acquire CBI in as little as 5 months. Depending on the issuing jurisdiction, the terms to obtain your CBI and foreign passport vary.

Under certain CBI schemes, applicants therefor shall spend at least 1 year in their would-be country of second citizenship. On a positive note, this is not necessarily the case, with Saint Kitts and Nevis CBI being one of the exceptions.


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on economic citizenship programs, how to choose a jurisdiction and get a foreign passport.

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Choosing between second passport or CBI and residence permit

A passport does not equal a residence permit. While passports may be used as travel documents globally, with a residence permit in the bag you will only be able to go as far as the jurisdiction you reside in. Please, keep in mind that no 2 residence permits are alike. Some of them allow you to reside in and travel throughout the EU.

Thinking back to the times of Covid-19 pandemics, second passport benefits and the mobility CBI holders enjoy get ever more obvious. On their journey back home, the latter could seamlessly visit 2 countries with the countries’ borders completely shut for everyone else.

Unlike refugees, second passport and CBI holders enjoy a lucky opportunity to leave the country of residence for a safer place, should a conflict break out. There, they will proceed with their ordinary everyday lives and avoid all possible dangers.

Nansen passport – old solution for present-day refugees

With the 1917 Revolution success in Russia, came the end of the 300 year old Romanov dynasty and the empire under their rule. German, Austrian, and Ottoman Empire battlefield setbacks back in 1918 hastened the collapse making the remaining continental European empires eventually fall.

In each case, the empire’s decline was accompanied by formation of new states. Following the Civil War of 1918-1921 in Russia, the number of people supporting the Bolsheviks who took power in November 1917 increased drastically. Facing the wave of nationalism, ethnic minorities in new European nation states resolved to flee their countries without waiting for life therein to become unbearable.

In 1915, the Armenians were harassed in the Ottoman Empire up to the point of extermination. These were not refugees or stateless persons themselves, but sooner a refugee issue that the contemporaries started discussing after the war ended. The war with numerous casualties seemed to have triggered a new challenge for international relations.

The Russians and the Armenians were the only stateless persons out of a great many refugees displaced. Stateless persons are not necessarily refugees, and the above example may serve as a perfect illustration thereof.

In 1921, the League of Nations members agreed the stateless persons who fled from Russia should have been recognized as refugees. Estimates have it, around 1.5 Russians were scattered around the globe in 1921, favoring large cities like Paris, Prague, Constantinople, and Berlin. The number of Armenian refugees recognized by the League made up 300,000 to 400,000.

Nansen office

Instructed by the International Red Cross Committee, the League set up an office to support both Russian and Armenian refugees and stateless persons. The Norwegian polar explorer Fridtjof Nansen was the first person to have led the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). The common belief was the appointment won’t last just like Nansen’s earlier successful attempts to repatriate prisoners-of-war.

The League of Nations suggested it was best for Nansen to make arrangements for refugee repatriation or “send them to the states able to accept refugees and secure them with jobs”. Nansen’s initial idea was to assist Russian refugees with repatriation so that they could contribute to the country’s revival. Most refugees however, were not eager to go back, and Nansen gave up the idea.

With no funds and only a small office at his disposal, Nansen was unable to directly help refugees and stateless persons. He hired stateless persons and refugees as office employees for local UNHCR branches. Relief activities turned out to be more like mutual help and private charity for refugees and stateless persons, with Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) playing first violin. The latter assisted refugees with school education, professional studies, and basic health care. They also cared for the young and the elderly, who were often at the end of their rope.

In 1922, a League of Nations conference was held by Nansen in Geneva. There, Nansen came up with the idea of a so-called Nansen passport for refugees and stateless persons who were extremely poor and had no maintenance to secure their bread and butter. Two years later, the scheme was extended to include refugees from Armenia.

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The certificate popularly known as Nansen passport was commonly valid for stateless persons and refugees within a year as provided for by the issuing authority. It could be renewed later on, but the number of renewals was limited. Nansen passport holders were able to travel the world to look for jobs.

The main goal was to contribute to easing pressure on the overpopulated Varna and Constantinople and to guarantee a fairer distribution of Russian and Armenian refugees between the League member states. Even with the above benefits in mind, the Nansen passport did not guarantee any job or residence opportunities for both stateless persons and refugees.

In 1926, over 20 League members agreed that Nansen passport holders were authorized to leave the issuing state and then come back if they wished so. Let’s say, if France issued a Nansen passport to a Russian refugee, the latter could travel to Belgium with it and then be readmitted to France.

The Nansen passport was a valid ID. A Canadian historian Michael Marrus summarized its significance in his 20th century European refugee overview: “It was the first document that made it possible to define a legal status of stateless persons through a special international agreement”.

It introduced a new type of international protection beyond the state powers.

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Roughly 450,000 refugees benefited from Nansen passports. Recognized by 52 states, the latter had been issued till 1942.

Is Nansen passport comeback of relevance at present?

Amid the present-day chaos in national asylum systems and heated arguments as to safe countries of origin and their status, a Nansen passport comeback in its modern form is long overdue. This can be a cornerstone of general European migration and refugee politics. Yet, European politicians are eager to only discuss the matter without acting thereupon.

Last year, over 1,200,000 migrants arrived in Europe. Most of them were from Syria.

After a major European refugee crisis in 2015, Europe still faces 2 major troubles. First off, safe country of origin lists are different in many states. Second off, we shouldn’t forget about high migrant death by drowning numbers.

On the European level, the reintroduction of the Nansen passport as an asylum-granting refugee ID could be useful as an instrument to resolve the refugee-related legal uncertainty and promote migration politics.

It mostly depends on the country of origin whether migrants therfrom will be recognized as refugees..

According to Statistical Office of the European Communities, nearly all Syrian refugees are granted a refugee status in the EU, yet only 29% of them are of Malian nationality. Refugees from the Western Balkan region stand next to zero chance for an asylum.

German politicians are all about the growing list of safe countries of origin. Asylum-seekers shall either produce their passport or ID or German officials will request the said country about the person in question to learn where the latter is coming from.

Considering most asylum-seekers arrive from war zones with poorly functioning bureaucratic systems, the procedure is lengthy and complicated.

The current political landscape is obviously not favorable for any radical steps like re-introducing Nansen (or analogous) passports.

The International Wealth immigration industry pros will gladly assist you with obtaining second passports and CBI for yourself and your family and provide you with advice on any related matters. It is good common sense to acquire CBI as one day it may become your life boat. To seamlessly move to a new home country after obtaining CBI therein, you are welcome to contact the International Wealth consultants and lawyers at and we will be with you in a wink of an eye to assist you with any CBI issues or related matters.

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