Malta Individual Investor Program – Facilitating Citizenship Through Investment in the Republic of Malta
The Republic of Malta allows investors to apply for citizenship, with all of its advantages. Acquiring Maltese citizenship also confers the benefits of European Union citizenship, since Malta has been a member of the European Union since 2004. Maltese citizenship also provides a visa exemption to more than 160 countries around the world, including the U.S.A.
The Malta Individual Investor Program is the first program of this type, and its validity is officially recognized by the European Commission.
Malta has gained recognition as an excellent jurisdiction for international business. While Malta provides advantages in prices, taxes and human resources, it also offers investors a flexible domicile according to European Union regulations. During the last four decades, Malta has established an impressive record in attracting foreign investors, since it provides exceptional advantages in several sectors, including: Financial Services, “ITC” (Information and Telecommunication Technology), Electronics, Centre of Expertise / Office Support Services, Generic Pharmaceutical, Oil and Gas, Maritime, Formation and Education, Aviation and Digital Industry.
Individual Investor Program (“PII” or “IIP” in English)
Through its Individual Investor Program, the Republic of Malta grants citizenship to those people – and their families - who contribute to the economic development of Malta. This program is limited to a maximum of 1,800 persons.
To have access to this prestigious and exclusive program, an applicant must:
• Acquire a residential property for an amount of at least EUR 350,000. Alternatively, the applicant may lease a residential property with an annual rent of at least EUR 16,000. In any event, the property or lease must be kept for at least five years;
• Make an investment of at least EUR 150,000 in shares, bonds, debt securities, Special Purpose Vehicles or other investment vehicles approved by the IIP-responsible agency in Malta;
• Make a contribution of EUR 650,000 to the Government, for the principal applicant (from which EUR 10,000 shall be a non-returnable contribution, to be sent prior to the submission of the application for the Program), plus:
o EUR 25,000 for the principal applicant’s spouse,
o EUR 25,000 for each child under the age of 18,
o EUR 50,000 for each single child between 18 and 26,
o EUR 50,000 for each dependent over 55, and
• Prove residence for at least twelve (12) months prior to the issuance of the naturalization certificate.
In addition to the above requirements, the applicant must:
• Be of legal age,
• Be in good health, both physically and mentally,
• Submit certificates issued by health providers with a reputation acceptable by the Malta Government Agency in charge of IIP showing that the applicant and his/her dependents have no contagious diseases,
• Be covered – as well as his/her dependents - by a global health insurance policy,
• Provide evidence to satisfy IIP administrative authorities that the applicant and his/her dependents have not been convicted for committing crimes, and
• Be no threat to Malta’s national security, public health or public policies.
The Government of Malta, through the relevant agency, shall exhaustively evaluate each application to ensure that the applicant – and his/her dependents - meet the requirements and do not represent a threat or danger to the good name of the Program.
It is understood that, due to the limited number of spaces that the Government of Malta has allotted for the Program, individual investors have the only opportunity of obtaining citizenship of a European Union country, with all of the advantages and economic and political guarantees that citizenship represents.
As a national of two or more different states, an individual usually has more options available for investment planning and enjoys more privacy banking. Therefore, many international businesspeople consider a second passport the best insurance one can acquire.
In an ever-changing world, the acquisition of a second citizenship is a wise decision and an investment for the future. There are no restrictions in Malta regarding double citizenship, and the petitioner may keep his/her current citizenship while enjoying the benefits of a second legal passport.
Mossack Fonseca is currently working in close collaboration with a credited person in Malta affiliated with the Individual Investor Program, in order to assist our distinguished clients to gather and prepare the necessary documents to apply for the IIP.
The possibility of becoming a member of this exclusive, prestigious and beneficial program is a golden opportunity- do not miss it!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Luis A. Quiel
Lawyer at Mossack Fonseca. Bachelor’s Degree, Law and Political Science, University of Panama, Panama
Master’s Degree (LLM), Tulane University, New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.A.
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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer. For specific technical or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.