Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Residency through Investment - some easy options

Among the most popular 'Club Med' countries where one can obtain residency and a EU passport are Cypress. Malta, Greece, Spain and Portugal. You can get Cypriot permanent residence by transferring about €300,000 to a Cyprus Bank on a fixed deposit for three years.

Malta has a Global Residence Program which allows expats the opportunity to buy or rent property in Malta and direct their foreign income to Malta in exchange for residence permit. The minimum investment in property is between €220,000 and €275,000 depending on the region and the minimum tax payable is €15,000 per family, while renters must pay at least €800 monthly.

In Spain, the simplest way is to invest €500,000 in a property and in return, obtain a temporary

 residence which has to be renewed each year. After five years the applicant receives permanent residency and citizenship after another five further years. The Spanish temporary residence permit allows for limited travel throughout Schengen zone for 90 days within a 180 day period, but does not give the recipient the right to work in Spain.

Portugal offers expats the opportunity to become residents through the Golden Residence Permit and it

is available to non-EU investors. Applicants can buy real estate of at least €500,000 or alternatively, make a capital investment of at least €1 million in a Portuguese company or establish a Portuguese company that employs more than ten people. Successful applicants get visa-free access to the Schengen Area, receive permanent residence after five years and Portuguese citizenship one year later.

As part of its efforts to raise income Greece is offering non-EU investors permanent residency similar to the Golden Visa of Spain and Portugal, by way of an investment of €250,000 in a Greek property for five years or if they own a ten-year time-sharing contract. Residence permits may be renewed for a further five years upon expiry if the resident maintains the status quo, but it does not allow employment