India: High Net Worth Individuals (HNWI) are among the substantial pillars of a healthy economy, contributing to national development and playing a pivotal role in uplifting GDP. The dilapidated conditions of ease of doing business in a country might make millionaires leave the country, which critically affects the economy in the long run.
India is currently suffering the same crisis as over 7,000 HNWIs have already migrated to other nations that offer ease of doing business and social security. A high level of crime and lack of business opportunities due to severe corruption in the Bureaucracy are some of the primary reasons for wealth migration.
An Indian businessman, in a statement to BBC, said that he had to leave India due to ‘Tax Terror.’ Holding a flourishing business in India’s capital city, Rahul left all behind due to exploitation from the Indian Bureaucracy. He settled in Dubai to escape from mental as well as financial torture of Indian Bureaucracy, especially from Income Tax and Enforcement Directorate departments.
BJP led government argued that the actions are being taken against the people hiding black money and illegal cash activities. Still, intellectuals say that the issue arose due to revenue target given to the bureaucrats.
According to AFRASIA’s Global Wealth Migration Review report, the most common reasons among HNWIs are Safety, Lifestyle (Climate, Pollution, Space, Nature), Financial Concerns, Schooling and Education for children, Taxes, Healthcare system, Standard of Living, Oppressive Government.
The report states that India has witnessed about 2% of the country’s millionaires outflow as in the year 2019, over 7,000 HNWIs left the country seeking a better lifestyle. Moreover, the report published by Morgan Stanley, Wall-Street Investment Bank, gives it greater authenticity. It revealed that over 23,000 Indian millionaires had left India since 2014 to search for a stable lifestyle.
Global leaders, including Hanley and Partners and CBI Index, have revealed the concept of Caribbean citizenship as a boon for Indian investors. Offering a politically and economically stable environment to investors, St Kitts and Nevis is the top desired destination for the people opting for ideal citizenship to do business while travelling the world without facing visa restrictions to over 160 nations worldwide.
St Kitts and Nevis flourish the oldest Citizenship by Investment Programme; It provides better protection for investors wealth and an opportunity to grow the business with No Personal Income Tax. It provides citizenship to the whole family, which can be then passed on to future generations. Indians are more eager to reach out to the new markets and with thriving tourism sector including ease of doing business.
Surprisingly, the second most desired destination to obtain citizenship is the Commonwealth of Dominica, which is also in the Caribbean region. The country provides HNWIs with the ability to travel over 143 countries worldwide without taking a prior visa from authorities. Unlike India, It also offers greater business opportunities without the harmful interference of politicians and bureaucrats.
The Caribbean has become the epicentre of the world business economy as most of the HNWIs are going there to luxuriate a healthy lifestyle with a natural environment. Dominica, also known as Nature Island, has over 365 rivers across the country. It also has natural waterfalls and the best healthcare system in the whole Caribbean.
The experts suggested that Indian millionaires are not outflowing higher amounts of money in the initial stage as the businesses they were handling in India are functioning as exact, which would merely make an impact on the Indian economy instantly. But, it would have a severe effect as generations pass on.
As said by Rupa Subramanya, a Fellow at the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada, soon millionaires remove themselves from their entrepreneurial ability and income or wealth from the tax base, “this is likely to be detrimental in the long run.”
She added high numbers of millionaires migrating from India sends a critical signal about ease of doing business in India.