Castries, Jan. 25, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — With global changes and constant developments in the global migration market, it can be difficult to distinguish between the true benefits of various Citizenship by Investment (CBI) programmes and making the right investment decisions.
As one of the youngest CBI products in the market, St Lucia has made tremendous progress in offering an alternative investment option in one of the Caribbean’s most developed and diverse economies. The island state is emerging as one of the fastest-growing economies in the Caribbean region and the nation is well-known for offering various investment and business opportunities for those looking for options to plan their wealth and diversify their portfolios.
As a popular second home to investors and their families, the island has been praised for its advanced and modernized infrastructure and offering one of the most modernized education and healthcare systems in the region.
Introduction of the National Action Bond in 2023
The country’s CBI Unit has introduced a new investment option for its CBI offerings following approvals from the CBI Board and Honourable Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Tourism, Investment, Creative Industries, Culture and Information, Ernest Hilaire.
From 1 January this year, a new bond investment exists for investors purchasing non-interest-bearing Government Bonds.
In order to participate in the CBI programme of St Lucia, applicants must choose one of four investment options, one of which is the National Action Bond (NAB), a new non-interest-bearing Government bond, that has been available since 1 January 2023.
Previously, the Government Bond investment option provided a minimum investment amount of US$500,000. In May 2020, the limited time Special COVID-19 Relief Bond option was introduced for the purpose of allowing the government to borrow funds for public use during the COVID19 pandemic. Under the Special COVID-19 Relief Bond option, the minimum investment amount was US$250,000. However, this investment option expired on 31 December 2022. In order to provide a similar investment option for applicants, the Government has now introduced the National Action Bond (NAB) as a new non-interest-bearing Government bond. Under the NAB option, the minimum investment is US$300,000 per application, with a fixed government administrative fee of US$50,000, regardless of the number of qualifying dependents included. The NAB must also be held for a minimum period of five years.
Other investment options
Other investment options available to applicants to the CBI programme are:
- The National Economic Fund (NEF) was established to receive qualifying investments to fund Government-sponsored projects on the island. Applicants can obtain citizenship by making a monetary contribution to the NEF via one of the prescribed contribution levels. The contribution starts at US$100,000 for a single applicant.
- For the real estate option, the minimum investment required has been updated. The investment threshold has been reduced by a third from US$300,000 to US$200,000. Applicants may obtain citizenship by purchasing Government-approved property valued at a minimum of USD 200,000. This property must be owned and maintained for a minimum of 5 years after citizenship has been granted.
- Applicants can obtain citizenship by making an investment, either independent or jointly, in a pre-approved enterprise project. Independent investment must be valued at USD 3.5 million and create at least 3 permanent jobs. For joint investments, each investor must contribute at least USD 1 million, resulting in a joint investment worth USD 6 million and creating at least 6 permanent jobs.
Benefits of CBI
There are many benefits to obtaining citizenship through investment, especially in St Lucia, as it attracts Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) for the nation which is used for advancing various projects such as the development of infrastructure, advancement of real estate, business expansion and job innovation.
A paradise for nature seekers, history buffs, and relaxation-seekers, St Lucia offers citizens all of the tropical benefits of the Caribbean. These benefits also include:
- Global mobility
- Right to hold dual citizenship
- Citizenship for life, with the right to live and work in the country
- Four investment options
St Lucia’s CBI programme is renowned for its high standards and exclusive benefits. It is one of the most sought-after programmes in the world. The programme offers various financial incentives, such as tax exemptions, permanent residence and access to visa-free travel for its citizens.
According to Moody’s Analytics, the island nation has been able to attract foreign business and investment, especially in its offshore banking and tourism industries, with its manufacturing sector being the most diverse in the Eastern Caribbean area. This makes it an attractive option for those looking to invest in a secure and prosperous country.
Is this CBI programme right for you?
The following may be a good fit for the programme:
- Individuals/businesspeople looking to establish overseas businesses
- Families seeking better global mobility
- Professionals who want to broaden their horizons
- Families who would like their children to go to prestigious universities