Representatives from the EU Commission, including the Head of Visa Policy and the EU’s liaison in Barbados, recently visited Dominica to meet with the five OECS islands that offer citizenship by investment programmes. The meeting was hosted at the Intercontinental Dominica Cabrits Resort last week.
The intention was to hold collaborative discussions with the technical teams and for clearer understanding by the EU of the structures in place to mitigate risk.
The dialogue was held between EU officials and different representatives from CBI Units of Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, and Saint Lucia.
The EU met with each country separately with the aim to technically assess their internal processes. It was shared that EU officials were impressed with the safeguards that have been put in place in each of the Units.
During their meeting, the European Union officials understood the significance and impact the Citizenship by Investment industry has on these islands and their people. They were impressed to see new infrastructure projects all around Dominica. They also recognised how the Citizenship by Investment (CBI) industry is making a positive impact on development.
EU Officials noted that the all the countries were willing to improve the industry, recognising that CBI contributes positively to the economic growth and development of the participating nations.
They further emphasised the shared commitment to enhance policies and practices, ensuring that the Citizenship by Investment Programmes bring about sustained benefits and foster prosperity and opportunities for both the islands and their residents.
Furthermore, the officials added that the European Union is always open to listening and appreciates the warm welcome as well as extensive dialogue on the CBI industry.
During the meeting, the representatives of the European Union said that they understand the importance of the Citizenship by Investment Programme for the region.
Officials added that the EU understands objectives of the CBI industry for participating countries, emphasising its role in fostering economic development and growth. This acknowledgement highlighted the positive impact the Citizenship by Investment initiatives have on the overall well-being of the countries.
Impressed by the island’s commitment to thorough background checks, the officials acknowledged the importance of maintaining high standards in vetting applicants.
Marie-Therese Johnson, the head of the CBI Unit in Dominica, emphasised that stringent due diligence not only upholds the integrity of the Citizenship by Investment Programme but also ensures that only qualified and reputable individuals are granted citizenship, contributing to the sustained success and credibility of the initiative.
European Union officials also lauded Dominica for adding another layer to the due diligence by introducing mandatory interviews for all applicants and their dependents aged 16 and above.
Notably, the positive meeting between the Caribbean CBI Jurisdictions and the European Union representatives has opened up promising collaboration opportunities.
The EU acknowledges the potential for mutual cooperation in refining and strengthening CBI programmes in the Caribbean region. This collaborative approach aims to foster shared expertise, best practices, and regulatory frameworks, ensuring that the programmes adhere to international standards.
Officials added that such partnerships present an avenue for knowledge exchange, promoting transparency and integrity in the implementation of Citizenship by Investment initiatives.
The recent meeting is also a part of the EU’s acknowledgement of collaboration opportunities and underscores a commitment to working together for the continued success and development of these programmes.