antigua and barbuda citizenship by investment

Antigua and Barbuda Citizenship by Investment Program

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Antigua and Barbuda Citizenship by Investment Program

One of the interesting things about working in the Offshore industry is that it is constantly in flux. Rarely do things stay the same for even a 5 year period. Things like offshore incorporation/banking (3rd and 4th flags) and citizenship/residency by investment (1st and 2nd flags) change on a regular basis.

For instance a jurisdiction which was previously very favorable for citizenship by investment (Dominica) is not less regarded as they have significantly raised their prices. There are a number of different options for the first flag, a second passport, and this is the first of a few articles I will publish on options of an alternative citizenship.

Some of your other options for citizenship by investment include:

Or you can check out the Passports book in the FT Intel Society, which covers over 25 different citizenship by investment options in depth.

Overview of Antigua and Barbuda

The overall fee is reasonable, and the investment is an actual investment in real property which can later be re-couped. The time required to be spent on the Island is only 5 days in the 5 years following the citizenship process (contrast this to Malta which has more stringent measures).

antigua and barbuda citizenship by investment

Antigua and Barbuda is an island in the West Indies region of the Caribbean. The area of the island which has a population of 81,800 as per the 2011 census is 440 square kilometers. It is an independent British Commonwealth state having achieved its independence from the Britons in 1981. It is also a member of the United Nations, Organization of American States (OAS) and Caricom. People who hold Antigua and Barbuda passports enjoy visa free travel to more than 130 countries including Canada, UK and the countries of the Schengen area.

The economy of the two-island nation whose capital is St. John’s has a vibrant tourism sector that forms the mainstay of the economy. The clear turquoise waters of the Caribbean have attracted establishments of hotels and resorts along the coastlines. The currency used here is the East Caribbean Dollar.

Apart from tourism, the island also practices agriculture which has lead to the growth of manufacturing industry. The banking and financial services industry is also a major contributor to the GDP of the island.

The education sector is characterized by a growing interest in medicine which saw the establishment of the University of Health Sciences Antigua (UHSA) and the American University of Antigua. Students from other countries have acquired their medicine qualifications from the island.

Antigua and Barbuda Citizenship by Investment Program

antigua and barbuda citizenship by investment

The Government of Antigua and Barbuda in 2013 created the Citizenship by Investment Program as an avenue to woe investors of good character to invest in the island. The aim of the investment is to contribute to the growth of the economy thereby creating job opportunities and raising the standard of living. The applicants of the program are required to meet financial and other obligations in order to get the opportunity to invest and live in Antigua and Barbuda. The residency requirement is minimal and the moment citizenship is granted, passports can be issued to the investors by the relevant authorities in the island.

Qualification Criteria

In order to qualify for the Citizenship by Investment Program, the principal applicants should meet a set of conditions as listed below:
-The principal applicant must be at least 18 years old.
-Applicants must make a qualifying investment in Antigua and Barbuda.
-Must spend 5 days in Antigua and Barbuda in the 5 years following citizenship issuance

-Investment options (fees extra; fees discounted until April 30, 2015):

  • Minimum USD $250,000 one-time contribution to the National Development Fund (reduced to $200,000 until April 30, 2015); or
  • Minimum USD $400,000 in a Government-approved real estate project (held for at least 5 years); or
  • Minimum USD $1,500,000 in an eligible business (or minimum $5,000,000 split between multiple investors; minimum investment of $400,000 per person).

-No minimum net worth, No education requirement, No maximum age, No business experience needed, No interview

Benefits of Antigua and Barbuda Citizenship by Investment

There are many benefits that you will enjoy as a result of becoming a citizen of Antigua and Barbuda. The following are some of the top benefits you will enjoy.

  • Citizenship in a British Commonwealth country.
  • Antigua and Barbuda recognizes dual citizenship, and does not require people to renounce their current citizenship.
  • Antigua and Barbuda passport-holders enjoy visa-free travel to many countries worldwide
  • Having a second citizenship may allow children to avoid military service in their home country.
  • Off-shore bank accounts, investments, and companies give unique opportunities for business and tax planning

Dependent Criteria

If you are planning to move to Antigua and Barbuda Island under the Citizenship by Investment program, the following criteria will apply to your dependents.

  • To qualify as dependents, children must be (1) under age 18 and unmarried; or (2) full-time students aged 18-25 who are dependent on their parents; or (3) over age 18 and living with (and fully supported by) the applicant due to physical or mental disability.
  • Parents or grandparents of the principal applicant or spouse may qualify as dependents if they are above 65 years of age, living with the principal applicant, and can prove financial dependency on the principal applicant.

Application ProcessFlag_of_Antigua_and_Barbuda.svg

  • The immigration consultant submits the complete Antigua and Barbuda Citizenship application (including medical reports, supporting documents, and signed forms) to Confederation.
  • Confederation reviews the application for accuracy and completeness to ensure fast Government processing.
  • The applicant transfers the complete Investment amount and fees to the designated escrow account.
  • After reviewing the application, Confederation submits it to the Government of Antigua and Barbuda.
  • The Government reviews each application and conducts a Due Diligence check.

Note: If the applicant is a Politically Exposed Person (e.g. a senior government or military official, a senior executive in a state-owned corporation, a senior politician, etc.), an additional Due Diligence Fee will apply, as extra background checks are required.

  • Each approved applicant is issued a Certificate of Registration/Naturalization, which completes his/her citizenship process.
  • A passport application is submitted to the Immigration Department, passports are issued, and passports are couriered to the applicant.
  • The entire process takes approximately 4-6 months.
  • An Oath of Affirmation/Allegiance will be taken when the client arrives in Antigua (to complete his residency requirement), or if the client visits an Embassy, High Commission, or Consular Office of Antigua and Barbuda abroad.

Important: Please note that fraudulent or forged documents, false information, or false declarations will result in the application being refused, or citizenship being revoked.

Get started obtaining Antigua and Barbuda citizenship by investment at Passports.io.

Program Exemptions

Program exemptions are currently under review by the Government. Until further notice, it is recommended that citizens of the following countries do not apply under the Antigua and Barbuda Citizenship by Investment Program:

  • Afghanistan
  • North Korea
  • Iran (*if resident in Iran) *If the family has resided outside Iran for more than 1 year, and their investment funds are generated and transferred from outside Iran, they are eligible to apply. The applicants must have no direct exposure to activities that contradict the United Nations’ sanctions.

Checklist of Required Documents

General Documentation Requirements:

  • All documents must be less than 6 months old unless otherwise stated (including translation and notarial stamp dates, dates Government forms are signed, dates on reference letters, etc.)
  • All Government Citizenship forms (AB1, AB2, AB3, AB4, and AB5) must be printed in color (these color print-outs are considered originals).
  • Forms may be completed either (1) by hand, using capital letters, with blue or black ink; OR (2) typed in a legible font, using Confederation’s fillable pdfs.
  • Each family member must submit his/her own forms, as indicated in the Checklist.
  • Both parents or the legal guardian, must sign forms for children under 18 years of age.
  • All photocopied documents must be certified as a true copy by a notary public. Certification must be authenticated by an Apostille, and the certifier may not be closely related to the applicant
  • All documents and forms must be submitted in English. Documents issued in another language must be accompanied by an authenticated English translation
  • All forms and necessary supporting documents should be submitted at the same time. The only exceptions are police certificates, which may be submitted separately.

Required Documents
Antigua and Barbuda Forms (dated within the last 6 months)
AB1: Citizenship by Investment Application

  • Each family member must submit an original form.
  • The parents must sign the form for children under age 18.

AB2: Photograph and Signature Certificate

  • Each family member must submit an original form.
  • For children who cannot yet sign, write “n/a” in the Specimen Signature section.

AB3: Medical Certificate

  • All applicants must undergo a medical examination.
  • Each family member must submit an original form.
  • A doctor will complete this Medical Questionnaire for each applicant (i.e. applicants do not complete it themselves).

AB4: Investment Confirmation

  • Only the principal applicant must submit an original form.

AB5: Agent Form

  • Only the principal applicant must submit an original form.

AB6: Application for a Passport

Note: this form is undergoing final Government approval and may change in future

  • Each family member must submit a form.
  • Applicants complete only section 1 and section 5, and sign section 11 (they do not date section 11).
  • The Recommender section (section 9) must be left blank, and will be completed by a solicitor in Antigua and Barbuda.

Identification and Other Documents (notarized/translated within the last 6 months)

-Two passport copies for each applicant (color copies)

  • Must show name, photo, citizenship/nationality, passport number, date and place of issue, expiry date, issuing country, and signature.

– Social security / National ID card for each applicant (color copy of both sides of card)
– Two copies of the Birth Certificate or Household Register for each applicant
– Ten original, passport-size, color photographs for each applicant (includes photographs required for the passport application)

  • Photos must be less than 6 months old.
  • Photos must be 35x45mm”, taken full face, on good quality photo paper.
  • One photo (only) must be certified to be a true likeness of the applicant (the certification should be hand-written on the back: “Certified a true likeness of[applicant]”, signed, and dated).
  • Specific requirements in Section G of form AB1.
  • Attach one photo to form AB2, and one photo to form AB3.

-Two copies of marriage certificate per accompanying spouse (so four copies in total if both the husband and wife are applying for citizenship),
-Divorce certificate (if applicable)
-Original police clearance certificate for each family member over age 18

  • Must be less than 6 months old.
  • Required from the applicant’s country of citizenship, and any country in which he/she has resided (for more than 6 months) within the past 10 years.
  • Specific requirements in Section D of form AB1

– Original results of HIV test for each applicant (including children)

  • Test results must be less than 3 months old.

-Military records (Where applicable)
-Education Documents

  • Original school transcripts and registration documents for children age 18-25, showing continuous, full-time studies.
  • Proof of university attended (principal and spouse), if applicable.

Proof of name change, if applicable (e.g. deed poll, adoption papers, etc.)

  • Required for every name change (other than marriage).

-Sworn affidavit of support for each overage dependent (children over age 18, parents and grandparents)
-Affidavit of consent and knowledge from the other parent (when a single parent is applying with a child under age 18), and a notarized, signed copy of the other parent’s photo ID.

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Investment and Business Documents

Investment confirmation

National Development Fund option only

  • Confirmation of processing funds deposited in Confederation’s account.

Real Estate option only: Required up-front:

  • Executed real estate contract (Purchase and Sale Agreement).
  • Executed escrow agreement and/or Memorandum of Transfer.
  • Proof of 10% deposit (of purchase price) in escrow account.
  • Confirmation of processing funds deposited in Confederation’s account.

Required after preliminary Government approval:

  • Confirmation of all funds deposited in the escrow account.
  • Evidence of title transfer (deed or certificate of title), when property closing occurs.

Business Investment option only:

  • Business proposal and/or details of the applicant’s business idea

Original source of funds declaration

  • Must be less than 6 months old.
  • Letter explaining the origin of investment funds and fees.
  • Iranians must document that the investment funds and fees were generated from outside Iran, and transferred from an account outside Iran.

Original bank reference letter on official bank letterhead

  • Must be less than 6 months old.
  • Issued by a senior bank official of an internationally recognized bank.
  • Must include length of relationship to applicant (minimum 2 years).

Original professional reference on official letterhead

  • Must be less than 6 months old.
  • Issued by an attorney, notary public, chartered accountant, or other professional.
  • Must show referee’s signature, contact details, and position within the company.
  • Must include applicant’s name, birth date, passport information, type and length of relationship to referee (minimum 2 years), conduct of applicant, etc.

Original evidence of residential address

  • Must be less than 3 months old.
  • For example, recent utility bill or bank statement showing full name and address; or written confirmation from a bank, attorney, chartered accountant, or notary public.
  • Iranians must prove legal and actual residence outside Iran for minimum 1 year (for example, utility bills, apartment leases, property titles, bank accounts, etc.)

Visa Free Travel Countries

Anguilla
Antigua & Barbuda
Argentina
Armenia
Aruba
Bahamas
Bangladesh
Barbados
Belize
Bermuda
Bolivia
Botswana
Brazil
British Virgin Islands
Cambodia
Cape Verde
Cayman Islands
Central African Republic
Chile
Colombia
Cook Islands
Costa Rica
Cuba
Dominica
Dominican Republic Ecuador
Egypt
Falkland Islands
Fiji
Gibraltar
Guadeloupe
Guernsey
Haiti
Hong Kong
Iran
Ireland
Isle of Man
Israel
Jamaica
Jersey
Jordan
Kenya
Kiribati
Kosovo
Laos
Macau
Madagascar
Malawi
Malaysia
Maldives
Martinique
Mauritius
Micronesia
Mongolia
Montserrat
Mozambique
Nepal
Netherland Antilles
Nicaragua
Niue
Palau
Panama
Peru
Philippines
Pitcairn Islands
Saint Helena
Saint Kitts & Nevis
Samoa
Seychelles
Singapore
Solomon Islands
South Korea
Sri Lanka
St. Lucia
St. Vincent & the Grenadines
Suriname
Swaziland
Tanzania
Timor-Leste
Togo
Trinidad & Tobago
Turkey
Turks & Caicos Islands
Tuvalu
Uganda
United Kingdom
Vanuatu
Venezuela
Zambia
Zimbabwe

Note: Visas to the United States may be easily obtained upon application.

Government Approved Real Estate Projects

The following real estate development projects have been approved by the Government of Antigua and Barbuda, and qualify investors for citizenship:

  1. South Point – Falmouth Harbour, St. Paul’s, Antigua
  2. Nonsuch Bay Resort and Residences – Hughes Point, St. Phillip’s, Antigua
  3. Tamarind Hills DevelopmentFryes Beach, St. Mary’s, Antigua
  4. Pearns Point Marina ResidencesJolly Harbour, St. Mary’s, Antigua

Have a look at the above real estate projects. We can send you more information about the citizenship process if you are interested. However, you may consider joining the FT Intel Society membership to hear what other PT’s have to say about their experiences, and view other second passport options.

Get your Antigua and Barbuda Citizenship by Investment applying for at passports.io.

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