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Staying home during the pandemic? Acquire a second passport and prepare for the renaissance

Would you like to secure yourself from the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic by acquiring second citizenship? But are you also reluctant to visit busy places such as embassies and consulates or to fly to a foreign country via crowded airports? There is a way out of this situation. Please read on and learn about the opportunities to acquire foreign citizenship by investment without leaving home. Start building a collection of foreign passports thus improving your chances for success after the pandemic and the economic crisis that it has caused are both over. We may be in for a new renaissance!

The COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to some hysteric attitudes indeed. There are very few places in the modern world where people are in a good mood and where there is no lack of disinfectants or toilet paper on the supermarket shelves. Most nations seem to be taking the protective measures a bit too far.

In some European countries, for example, people are not allowed to leave their homes for no good reason. What they can do is travel to work and visit pharmacies and food stores. In some places, the restrictive measures are lifted one by one but life is not probably going to be the same again.

If you are idling about your house due to the pandemic, please consider using the extra free time for acquiring foreign citizenship while never leaving home. Yes, this can be done remotely and the text below will tell you how exactly you can do it.

Acquire foreign citizenship by investment while staying home during the pandemic and prepare for a new renaissance

With the COVID-19 pandemic, the restrictions on international travel and even on simple walks along the city streets have quickly become a global policy. China was to start the processes. Then followed the western countries. Finally, almost the whole world has had to face the lockdown.

Many people did not realize what was going on at the beginning. They found the situation somewhat surreal. Some of them still think that their government is going to announce in a couple of days that the virus has been defeated and that life can be back to normal. The reality is, however, that this is not going to happen soon. We are months or even years away from the development of an effective and proven vaccine against COVID-19.

The only effective way to keep the virus in rein is provide for social distancing and limit all unnecessary contacts with other people. It is evident, however, that such practices are going to have catastrophic consequences for the world economy.

It is still too early to say how many people are going to lose their jobs and how many business companies are going to close down because of the pandemic. The most pessimistically minded experts predict that several national states are going bankrupt within a few months from now.

Italy is already on the verge of disaster. Its economy has come to a full stop. No taxes are paid. The profitability of Italian bonds is increasing, which makes borrowing money more expensive for the government. The math is gloomy. And some other countries are facing similar situations.

Many independent analysts laughed heartily when they heard Goldman Sachs bankers forecast a 5% drop of the world economy in 2020. What are the bankers thinking about? It would be a big surprise if the economy dropped only by 5%. The world has come to a standstill. There is nothing national governments nor central banks can do about this situation. Not even the US government.

It will be interesting to note that the US FRS lowered the key interest rate to almost zero even before the lockdown was implemented. It is surprising that the FRS brought the interest rate down to zero even before the recession started. But the FRS actions are not going to have any serious effects. Neither lowering the interest rate nor printing more dollars can be effective in defeating the virus within a short period.

What makes things even worth is the ‘emotional scars’ that the pandemic is leaving on people’s hearts. Summer vacations have been ruined for the vast majority of the world population. Besides, we hear ceaseless talks about the ‘second wave’ and this does not make our spirits higher. Right now, we do not see the light at the end of the tunnel. We have come to realize that the hard restrictions have to be lifted if we are to have access to food but the virus threatens to continue killing many people…

A great number of people are at a loss and they do not know what to expect in the near future. Is the situation going to become less serious when winter comes? Are the stock markets going to start growing again? We have to hope for the better, of course, but prepare for the worse.

On the other hand, while there are many people who underestimated coronavirus-related risks, there are only very few of them who understand what new possibilities the crisis brings. This is not a once-in-a-lifetime event. This is not even a once-a-century event. Such rapidly spreading deadly pandemics have befallen humankind only a few times throughout history. And this is the first time such a pandemic strikes in the modern era.

It would be silly to believe that things are going to return to the state they were before. But the world is not necessarily going to become worse. After the ‘black death’ times in Europe came Renaissance and this was one of the most productive and most positive periods in human history. The plague actually put an end to feudalism that was one of the most stupid economic models imaginable.

Personal freedom, scientific research, private property, and economic growth – these were the consequences of the plague pandemic when it was over. The world became much better than it used to be. And all this happened over a short period of time. When the COVID-19 pandemic is finally over, we may become witnesses of an unprecedented renaissance when talented and responsible people will prosper, as the opportunities available to them will be unlimited.

Why do you have to acquire a second passport by investment right now?

You have to start preparing for the revival already. The first step can be acquiring foreign citizenship and a second passport. When you have a foreign passport, your travel opportunities are going to be much wider when the restrictions are finally lifted. Besides, you will have better possibilities to open foreign bank accounts and purchase foreign property as the prices are falling rapidly all around the globe.

The panic that is happening due to the pandemic highlights the value of having a second home abroad, a foreign residence permit, or – better still – a foreign passport.

This kind of diversification is extremely important. The US, Italian, and South Korean passports used to be very powerful documents for the traveler. Time has shown, however, that even the holders of such ‘brilliant’ passports are currently unable to cross a large number of national borders.

This is clear that the value of any national passport can decrease due to some external circumstances, which makes having a collection of passports an especially valuable asset. If you hold several national passports at a time (and this is perfectly legal and practically possible), the number of barriers on your way becomes smaller and your opportunities become much larger.

Unfortunately, many people are going to suffer from the coronavirus directly or indirectly but the pandemic is going to be over one day anyway. Some people will want to forget these troublesome times as soon as they can. Others will make some important conclusions and learn by their mistakes. But the smartest people are going to use the fantastic new opportunities that have opened up with this unfortunate situation.

Now we know that things can turn upside down overnight and what was sufficiently reliable before may turn out useless in the future. So we had better have a ‘plan B’ and an insurance policy in the form of a collection of foreign passports in order to diversify risks and be prepared for a change of rules that may happen at any time.

Since most of us have to stay home during the pandemic, we have a bit more spare time. Why not use this time efficiently and start building up a collection of passports? You do not have to travel anywhere to acquire a foreign passport, which makes this opportunity even more attractive. So, what can you do in order to obtain citizenship of a foreign country? As a matter of fact, there are several paths to foreign citizenship.

A second passport by investment

This option will suit those who are ready to pay for a reliable and efficient passport. Acquiring foreign citizenship by investment is a wonderful way of building a passport collection.

The easiest way to obtain foreign citizenship is to make a non-returnable donation to the state fund of a country that runs a citizenship-by-investment program. The fact that the money cannot be returned puts some people off this option. However, it has undeniable advantages anyway.

You can file an application for citizenship to the Government of one of five Caribbean states that offer this opportunity or the South Pacific state of Vanuatu. The Commonwealth of Dominica, St Lucia, and Antigua and Barbuda offer the most affordable citizenship by investment at the moment.

The non-returnable donation amount starts at US$ 100,000. In addition to that, the applicant for foreign citizenship must be prepared to cover the administrative costs and pay for the services of a licensed immigration agent who has to be involved in the process of applying for citizenship.  

This is a considerable sum of money, of course, but it is worth investing as with the foreign citizenship you are buying a wonderful insurance policy. Besides, you can file the application remotely and obtain the passport without ever visiting your second country of citizenship. This opportunity is especially valuable in the times of the lockdown.

If you are reluctant to give money away, there are other options available to you. St Lucia, for example, allows investing into zero-percent Government bonds thus acquiring citizenship of the country. Normally, you have to invest US$ 500,000 into the bonds in order to qualify for St Lucian citizenship. The economic crisis, however, has made St Lucian authorities come up with a limited time offer: until the end of 2020, you can invest US$ 2500,000 into Government bonds and this will make you qualified for obtaining full citizenship of the country. You have to hold the bonds in your possession for five years and after this period is over, you can sell them back thus returning the money you have invested.

Besides, you can acquire citizenship of St Lucia by making a returnable investment into real property in the country or into a business venture there. The minimum required investment amount is US$ 300,000 in the first case and US$ 1,000,000 in the second case. Again, the property and the business venture has to remain in your possession for five years before you can resell it. If you are a vivid entrepreneur, you can actually make a profit from your business in St Lucia simultaneously acquiring citizenship of the country. For some people, this offer should sound very attractive.

The opportunities to invest into government bonds or into real property may be questionable. After all, you have to ‘freeze’ a considerable sum of money for a considerable period of time. Clearly, in case the required investment amount can help you earn more than US$ 100,000 over five years, it would make better economic sense to simply donate the money to the state fund and spare yourself the trouble of selling the property back. (Selling the bonds back is not a problem though as this opportunity is guaranteed by the Government of St Lucia).

There are other opportunities too in other parts of the world that may appear interesting to some business-minded people. In Turkey, for instance, you can buy any piece of real property that is worth at least US$ 250,000 and this will make you eligible to apply for Turkish citizenship. As the Turkish lira exchange rate is falling, a quarter of a million can buy you a very nice house or apartment in the country if you do not postpone that matter for too long.

We have partners in Turkey who will be happy to help you choose the property to buy. They will make a virtual tour for you, show you photographs and videos describing the property, and help you in any other way. What is more, you can purchase property in Turkey without visiting the country if you issue a Power of Attorney in the name of a Turkish agent. You will have to visit the country to obtain the Residence Card though.

In addition to that, the Turkish Government offers a number of other opportunities to foreigners wishing to become citizens of Turkey. You will qualify for Turkish citizenship if you purchase Government bonds or shares of a commercial company, or put money in a Turkish bank, or invest into a local business. These investments can also be made remotely, but the required amounts are higher than the investment into real property.  

Are there any other similar programs? Yes, Montenegro, for example, runs a citizenship-by-investment program that requires making a non-returnable donation plus buying a piece of real estate in the country. Cyprus and Malta offer similar opportunities to foreign nationals wishing to acquire a second passport. All these countries require that the applicant for citizenship pay a personal visit there at least once.

Therefore, the optimal option under the present conditions would be to apply for citizenship of a Caribbean state or of Vanuatu. All the application and citizenship acquisition procedures can be carried out remotely without travelling to your second home country. Your foreign passport will be sent to you with a courier.

A second passport by descent

Some countries also grant citizenship to the descendants of their citizens who live in other countries. Study your family three and see if one of your grandparents or great grandparents comes from a reputable jurisdiction. If he or she does, you may have a chance to apply for citizenship of this country!

Of course, collecting the documents of your relatives who passed away a long time ago can be difficult. Besides, the application process can extend over a few years. But if you are a winner of the ‘genealogical lottery’, you can become a citizen of a Western European country, for example. In all likelihood, acquiring second citizenship by descent is going to work out less expensive than doing it by investment.  

A second passport by naturalization

A third path to foreign citizenship is acquiring it via naturalization. This option will not suit those who do not want to leave their place of residence to acquire a second passport as naturalization presupposes living in a foreign country for a long time.

Moreover, some national legislations require that the foreign national live in the country for a few dozen years before he or she can be ‘naturalized’. Prior to becoming a citizen of a foreign country, you have to acquire a residence permit there and there has to be reasons to apply for the permit, too. Normally, a permanent job in the country or marriage to its citizen constitute such reasons. In most cases, you also have to pass the language and history tests when acquiring foreign citizenship by naturalization.

There are some exceptions to these hard requirements, however. Portugal, for instance, has the so-called ‘golden visa’ program. A golden visa is a residence permit that is issued to a foreign investor who brings quite a large amount of money to the country in the form of investment into real property or a business venture. The holder of a golden visa will qualify for full citizenship of Portugal and, consequently, of the European union after five years on the condition that he or she spends as little as one week in Portugal every year.

It is true that Portugal is rather friendly in terms of personal income taxes but the country is an exception from the general rule as few other countries run golden visa programs. Besides, the naturalization process always lasts for several years while acquiring foreign citizenship by investment usually takes two to three months.

Foreign citizenship and a second passport – some concluding remarks

If you have some spare time, we highly recommend that you investigate the possible paths leading to foreign citizenship. If your home country allows dual citizenship (and most countries do), a second passport is a wonderful chance to diversify your assets. Asset diversification is not only about having various securities in your investment portfolio. It is also about having property in different places in the world and keeping your money in different national currencies.

There are people who will panic when the situation becomes out of the ordinary. On the other hand, there are people who find new opportunities in the changing environment. The property prices are dropping in the countries stricken by the coronavirus pandemic. The Governments of the countries that run citizenship-by-investment programs offer various discounts to foreigners applying for their citizenship because they are also experiencing the consequences of the global economic crisis. Now is the best time to act! Please write to us to info@offshore-pro.info and we will help you choose the second citizenship option that will suit you perfectly well

Where can acquire foreign citizenship without leaving home?

Currently, the following countries offer the opportunity to acquire their citizenship remotely: Vanuatu, Antigua and Barbuda, Saint Lucia, Saint Kitts and Nevis, the Commonwealth of Dominica, and Grenada.

How much does it cost to acquire a second passport remotely?

Prices for foreign passports vary from country to country. If you are looking for the most affordable offer, give an eye to the Caribbean states. The lowest price is found in Antigua and Barbuda, Saint Lucia, and Dominica – US$ 100,000. Saint Kitts and Nevis and Grenada charge US$ 150,000. The passport of Vanuatu will cost you US$ 145,000. Investing US$ 250,000 into real estate in Turkey will suffice to acquire citizenship of the country. Malta and Cyprus charge around 1 and 2 million euros for their citizenship, correspondingly.

What kind of investment into real property can I make to acquire foreign citizenship?

The required amounts of returnable investment into real estate vary from country to country. They can be anywhere between US$ 200,000 and 2.15 million euros. Please bear in mind that some countries allow investing in any real property while others require investments into approved development projects only. Some national states allow letting the property on a lease immediately after the purchase while others insist that the property should be used by the owner only. The property can be resold after three to seven years depending on the particular country. In all cases, citizenship will be retained after the property is sold.

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