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Hong Kong immigrant investor program

Top 5 Asian Countries Offering Immigrant Investor Programs

With many prosperous families and ambitious entrepreneurs entering the market for a second passport, choosing the right country is crucial. More and more countries are now opening their doors to Citizenship by Investment.  These include advantages such as visa free travel to a variety of countries and increased freedom to invest and create partnerships.

Asia is a promising part of the world where opportunities to obtain Investment Citizenship are booming. With vast and improving economies and an increasing presence in the international relations, it is well worth considering choosing an Asian country for your second passport.

 

United Arab Emirates (UAE)

Dubai investor visa

The UAE has become a thriving hub for international business in recent years, with Dubai being the central city for foreign investors to make their mark. The city enjoys a high standard of living, and it’s Free Trade Zone makes it a haven for tax free capital as well as a popular destination for affluent families and celebrities to seek residence.

The Investment

All would-be citizens are required to invest in the local economy. Investment requirements for Dubai include:

  • Establishing a UAE enterprise or investing in an existing UAE enterprise
  • UAE real estate

The Conditions

  • The applicant must invest in a local UAE company. Currently, the minimum investment is approximately 70,000 dhs. (£13,000+ GBP)
  • The applicant cannot be employed by any other company

Visa Free Travel Includes

  • Maldives
  • Mauritius
  • Fiji
  • Grenada
  • Haiti
  • Indonesia
  • Jamaica

Because Dubai is a Free trade Zone, there are significant benefits to establishing your own business, including zero personal or corporate tax and complete ownership of profit. Whilst there is no fixed term of residency, a vacancy from the country for over 6 months will result in an expired visa.

Surprisingly, investing in a villa in the UAE can also get you a complimentary Antiguan passport!

 

Philippines

Philippine investor visa

The Philippines, whilst boasting a rich culture of art and cuisine, is an ideal country for foreign investment. The country has international business relations with nations including America, Germany, China and Japan. Another benefit being that the living costs are low, with good access to healthcare and education.

Investors looking to obtain citizenship in the Philippines by investment will need to apply for the Special Investors Residence Visa.

The Investment

  • Minimum $75,000 USD in the Philippines economy (£50,000+ GBP)
  • The investment can be the form of a publically listed company or companies in the manufacturing & services sector.

The Conditions

  • Applicant must be twenty one or over
  • Applicant must have no criminal record
  • Applicant must be both mentally and physically fit.

Visa Free Travel Includes

  • Brazil
  • Morocco
  • Thailand
  • Columbia
  • Costa Rica
  • Malaysia
  • Peru

 

Thailand

Thailand investor visa

Thailand has one of the fastest growing economies in Asia, with high living standards for relatively little expense. Investments in real estate also tend to be very affordable, offering good value for money.

The Investment

A choice to invest in:

  • The applicant must deposit up to ten million Baht in a long term savings account within a Government bank (Just under £200,000 GBP)
  • Invest ten million Baht in government bonds
  • Purchase of a real estate block for a minimum of three million Baht (Just under £60,000 GBP)

The Conditions

  • Applicant must establish either a limited company, or form a partnership with a listed Thai company.
  • Purchase of real estate
  • Purchase of national bonds or bonds from an existing business enterprise
  • A minimum of 10,000,000 Baht in a fixed savings account, for three years

To become nationalised, you must go through one of three stages:

  • Standard Procedure
  • Special Procedure (Immigration Bureau for Investors)
  • Special Investors Scheme (BOI)

Applicants are usually required to live in Thailand for at least three years – not a particular punishment given the beautiful beaches! Once nationalised, you do not have to live permanently in Thailand in order to retain citizenship (unlike the UAE).

Visa Free Travel Includes

Thirty days:

  • Greece
  • South Africa
  • Germany
  • Hong Kong
  • United States
  • United Kingdom
  • Japan

 

China

Investor visa china

There has been an increase in the number of investor seeking citizenship in China, particularly in Hong Kong. The city is one of the leading financial centres for international business and enjoys a low level tax regime and low inflation.

The Investment

  • Since 2010 the minimum is approximately ten million HK dollars (almost £900,000 GBP), to be invested in the applicant’s personal company or partaking in another business.

The Conditions

  • Applicant must be over 18 years old
  • Investment must be made six months before the application or within six months after Visa approval

The main benefit of investing in Hong Kong is that after the initial six month Visa, applicants will be eligible for a Hong Kong I.D. This provides the holder with the benefit of native education and healthcare. After seven years residency, the applicant will be eligible for a Hong Kong passport.

Visa Free Travel Includes

For Hong Kong passports:

  • Bahamas
  • Belgium
  • Croatia
  • Chile
  • Egypt
  • Israel
  • Italy

One can also obtain permanent residence in China if married to a Chinese national for over 5 years.

 

Singapore

Singapore investor program

Highly sought after by foreign investors, Singapore has one of the richest economies in Asia. As well as offering good healthcare, a fair tax regime and recently ranked as the safest country in the world, Singapore is strategically ideal for business across the Middle East.

The Investment

Under the GIP:

  • Approximately two and half million Singapore dollars (Almost £1,300,000 GDP)
  • A choice between investing in a new or existing business, or a fund.

The Conditions

  • Applicant must have a successful business record
  • Applicant should offer a five year business and investment plan

Upon approval the applicant will receive a PR status, as well as an REP – this allows you to maintain permanent residence in Singapore even if you are out of the country.

Visa Free Travel Includes

  • Australia
  • Barbados
  • Canada
  • Cape Verde
  • China
  • Denmark
  • Mexico

Important notes:

Prices of investments will differ between programmes. Always seek consultation about possible taxes and government fees.

About the author:

Alex works for Shorex Capital, who offer citizenship investment programs in various countries around the world. Alex likes to stay ahead of the ever progressing sector that is citizenship by investment by writing and researching as often as he can.

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