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Portugal does not have any citizenship by investment program at the moment. Instead, the Portuguese government has chosen to introduce an optional path to citizenship under the Investment Residency Program. The investment residency program plus the optional Portuguese citizenship is the Portugal Golden Visa Program , also known as The Portugal Golden Residence Permit Program. 

 

It is currently one of the most successful investment immigration program in Europe, allowing non-EU citizens to obtain EU residency and eventually citizenship. One of the advantages of this program is that applicants are not required to reside permanently in Portugal, and the minimum residency requirement is 14 consecutive or non-consecutive days every two years.

 

Under the Golden Visa program, which is available to various other eligible investment funds, the investor and his or her family can obtain Portuguese citizenship through investment rather than by making investments in the country.

 

This also allows investors to establish economic and cultural ties prior to acquiring citizenship, and therefore requires a commitment to their potential new home country. However, this distinction keeps the Portugal Golden Visa at a distance from citizens of other jurisdictions within and outside the European Union.

What are the advantages of the Portugal Golden Visa Program?
  1. Low residency requirements – The minimum residency requirement is 14 consecutive or non-consecutive days per two years.
  2. One applicant with three generations – Applicants can immigrate with their spouse, children and parents.
  3. The gateway to Europe – Portuguese citizenship allows you to live and work freely in all 26 countries in Europe’s Schengen Area and enjoy the benefits of being a local citizen.
  4. Preferential taxation scheme – Non-tax residents are not taxed on foreign sources of income and tax residents are not taxed on most foreign sources of income for the first 10 years. Inbound income in Portugal is reduced to 20%.
  5. Multiple investment options – A wide range of investment options, with real estate and funds being the most popular options.
  6. 5 years to apply for citizenship – After 5 years, you can apply for citizenship or permanent residency.
  7. Low investment threshold – The minimum investment threshold for real estate and funds is 280,000€ and 500,000€ respectively.
  8. Visa-free entry – Its passport ranks fifth in freedom of travel, with visa-free access or entry to 187 countries and territories.
  9. Public Education and Health – Portugal offers residents free early childhood, primary and secondary education and free health services.

 

The most popular option for acquiring Portuguese citizenship through investment under the Golden Visa program is through investment in real estate, especially in the Autonomous Region of Madeira. If a person holds a Golden Visa within the required legal period, he or she can choose to obtain permanent resident status in Portugal or apply for citizenship after one year, depending on the maintenance of the investment for the previous five years.

Portugal Golden Visa requirement

– €280k Property Purchase in Portugal, the capital must come from outside of Portugal

– A minimum stay of 14 days in Portugal every two years, consecutive or non-consecutive

– No income requirement

– No age requirement

– No schooling requirement

– No work skills required

 

Who is eligible to immigrate under the same application?

– Spouse

– Children under the age of 18

– Children under the age of 25 attending full-time school

– Dependent unmarried children over the age of 18

– Dependent parents of the applicant or spouse

– Siblings under 18 years of age under the guardianship of the applicant or spouse

 

Portugal Permanent Residence and Language Requirements

In the fifth year, holders of the Golden Visa may apply for permanent residence in Portugal, provided they have knowledge of Portuguese at A2 level, which is dependent on passing the corresponding language test and can take the following forms.

– Certificate of qualification from a Portuguese public, private or cooperative educational institution

– Certificate of qualification from a Portuguese-speaking national educational institution

– Certificate of success in a Portuguese language test

– Certificate of Portuguese as a Foreign Language (Centro de Avaliação de Português Língua Estrangeira), obtained by passing a Portuguese language assessment center accredited by the Ministry of Education

Golden Visa Citizenship by Investment

Portugal’s Golden Visa program is one of the most popular residency by investment programs in Europe and in the world. It is a residency by investment scheme designed for non-EU citizens. You can qualify for residency by investing €280,000 which is one of the lowest investment thresholds in Europe. You can be eligible to apply for Portuguese citizenship in five years. This is one of the quickest in Europe.

 

Required Documents:

– Full copy of birth certificate, duly authenticated or annotated and translated

– Proof of knowledge of the Portuguese language (as described above)

– Official request to the Portuguese Minister of Justice

– Officially legalized or annotated and translated criminal record issued from the foreign country or region where you have lived since the age of 16.

 

Investment Options for Portugal Golden Visa in 2022

The two most popular investment options for the Portugal Golden Visa are real estate investment and fund investment. It is worth noting that some regulatory changes to the Portugal Golden Visa have been announced in early 2021. The new rules for the Portugal Golden Visa will also come into effect on January 1, 2022. The main changes are as follows:

 

  1. Real estate eligible for the Portuguese Gold Visa

– Real estate of €500,000 or more (reduced to €400,000 for “low density areas”): SEF Immigration’s documentation and general requirements for real estate of €500,000

 

– 350,000 Euros or more for real estate (real estate value + renovation costs), renovation of real estate older than 30 years or located in urban regeneration areas (“low density areas” reduced to 280,000 Euros)

 

Portugal Golden Visa Real Estate (high and low density areas)

Light green areas: defined as low density areas with less than 100 inhabitants per square kilometer or with a GDP per capita of less than 75% of the national average.

Dark green areas: are defined as high density areas, mainly in the northern coastal areas, including Madeira and Azores.

 

[Restrictions on residential real estate after January 1, 2022]

  1. Lisbon, Porto and most coastal areas will no longer be eligible.
  2. Other mainland areas as well as the Azores and Madeira will continue to be eligible.

– Red zone (full restriction)

– Yellow areas (partially restricted)

– Light green areas (will continue to qualify)

 

However, there are no restrictions on non-residential real estate, including hotels, stores, service apartments and offices, etc.

 

Investment funds eligible for the Portuguese Golden Visa

Any investment of €500,000 or more in a venture capital or private equity fund with a minimum term of 5 years. However, the fund is required to have at least 60% of its investment in a commercial company headquartered in the national territory.

Portugal Golden Visa Application Requirements

 Application Timeline

It usually takes about 3 months, depending on the choice of investment and the time of collection of personal documents, etc. When will the residence permit be granted after the application is submitted?

  1. About 3 months after the application is submitted, the result of the pre-approval will be obtained.
  2. After that, SEF will inform you about the appointment for fingerprinting
  3. After that, you will receive the approval from SEF.
  4. The residence permit will be issued 3 to 4 months after the approval.

 

However, renewal is required 30 to 90 days prior to the expiration of the residence permit.

 

Documents required to apply for a Golden Visa

1. Documents to be obtained in your country of origin

  1. a valid passport for each applicant and a valid Schengen visa (if applicable)
  2. a certificate of no criminal record for each applicant over 16 years of age from the country/region where the applicant currently resides
  3. proof of residence, such as a copy of the principal applicant’s driver’s license and a recent utility bill or recent bank statement
  4. Proof of employment of the principal applicant, such as a letter from the employer
  5. proof of eligibility for family members, such as a marriage certificate for the spouse, birth certificates for children (children over 18 years of age will need additional proof of marital status and proof of school attendance). For example, for dependent parents, the applicant’s birth certificate and proof of no income for the parents (if the dependent parent is under 65 years old)

 

All documents, except the passport, need to be certified by a notary public at the nearest Portuguese consulate or at the Hague Convention. Also, all non-Portuguese documents must be translated and certified by a translator or Portuguese lawyer authorized by the Consulate.

 

2. Documents to be obtained in Portugal

  1. the applicant’s permission to check his or her Portuguese criminal record with the licensing authority
  2. Portuguese taxpayer identification number (a local tax representative must be appointed to obtain it)
  3. Certificate of no debt from the Portuguese Tax and National Insurance Office
  4. receipt for the payment of the application fee
  5. a signed statement from the applicant that he/she will meet the investment requirements
  6. evidence that a minimum investment has been made (including a certificate issued by the appropriate registry and, if applicable, a letter from a local bank confirming the required transfer of funds)
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