St Kitts and Nevis: While the world has been on lockdown for months due to the Covid-19 outbreak, more people are realising the advantages of having a second citizenship to access the safety of a backup country and to travel more freely across the world.
An increasing number of countries provide this option through their citizenship or residence by investment programmes. Some countries only give a resident permit in exchange for a small investment. Others grant full citizenship in exchange for a financial contribution, which will be directed towards national development.
Other factors to consider are processing time, weather, social safety, economic stability, and a sound healthcare system. These factors are just as significant as the investment itself, the ease with which it can be relocated, or both. One might wonder if there is a country where, to the best of one’s knowledge, all of the above factors are presented in a good light. The good news is that such a country exists, and it goes by the name of St. Kitts and Nevis.
The two-island nation, which was previously mostly a sugar-growing region, has evolved into a safe and appealing tourist and citizenship destination. With its sunny and sandy beaches, good health care, low crime rate, and good national infrastructure, St Kitts and Nevis has become one of the Caribbean’s fastest-growing economies.
Since 1984, the country has welcomed investors with open arms, operating the world’s longest and best-managed Citizenship by Investment Programs (CBI). In the global marketplace of citizenship by investment programmes, their programme is known as the “platinum standard”. In most situations, investors are guided through an expedited application procedure that allows full citizenship to be granted in as little as 60 days. No other country’s citizenship by investment programme offers such an excellent expedited feature. And the country is complimented for its rigorous vetting processes to provide a safe and secure environment not only to its current citizens and residents, but to the people who are going to become their part in coming years.
After making the required financial contribution, the investor and his or her family are awarded nationality and issued internationally respected citizenship that permits their bearers visa-free travel to over 160 of the world’s 193 countries.
In their regular updates of global rankings of all citizenships and national visa requirements, CBI Index published by Financial Times’ PWM magazine put St. Kitts and Nevis CBI Programme ahead of all others in not only the Caribbean and Central America but in the whole world which offers CBI programmes, with the exception of Barbados, which does not have a Citizenship by Investment Program. This distinguished, independent, global ranking confirms that St. Kitts and Nevis Citizenship is the unquestioned best among all Caribbean countries with citizenship-by-investment programmes, said Les Khan, Head of the St Kitts and Nevis Citizenship Investment Unit (CBIU).
According to CS Global Partners – a world-leading government consultancy and marketing firm specialising in citizenship by investment, the entire citizenship application process for investors in St Kitts and Nevis is quick and straightforward. Within 60 days of making the investment and submitting the citizenship application, the new citizens receive a bundle of happiness with their citizenship and currently it is offering special offers for persons obtaining citizenship by investment under the family application process, which enables the one with the limited-time offer, which ends in 2021, allows families of up to four to obtain citizenship for $150,000 instead of $195,000. “Only those who pass a thorough due diligence process are eligible to make the investment and become citizens. As part of the application procedure, investors might include a wide range of dependants who are family members,” according to Micha Emmett, CEO of CS Global Partners.
In the economy of St. Kitts and Nevis, investors currently have two financial contribution options:
1. A pre-approved real estate investment, such as purchasing hotel shares, villas, or condominium units.
a. A minimum investment of $200,000 USD for a period of seven years, or $400,000 USD for a period of five years after the acquisition.
a. Non-refundable due diligence and processing fees apply upon submission: $7,500 US for the main applicant and $4,000 US for each dependent of the main applicant over the age of 16.
c. A fair compulsory insurance fund contribution and conveyance fees are not included in the cost.
d. The Marriott Hotel and Residences, the Park Hyatt, the Koi, the Ramada Hotel and Resorts, and the Four Seasons are among the five branded hotels in the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS). Secret Bay is also located there.
2. Contribution to the Sustainable Growth Fund (SGF).
a. A single candidate must provide a non-refundable $150,000 US contribution.
b. Normally, an applicant with three dependents, including a husband and two children, must contribute $195,000 US, but during the epidemic, the amount was cut to $150,000 US as a limited-time offer that expires at end of 2021.
c. Any additional dependents beyond the first three, regardless of age, must be added to the contribution for a total of $10,000 US.
d. Non-refundable due diligence and processing fees of $7,500 US for the primary applicant and $4,000 US for each dependant over 16 years old must be paid upon submission of the papers for citizenship by investment.
Some Distinctive Features
According to information, there is no requirement for residency or a visit to St Kitts to be eligible for citizenship by investment. It is one of the most cost-effective ways for investors to obtain a second citizenship. It is simple to obtain, and dependents under the age of 30 as well as parents and grandparents above the age of 55 can be included in the application.
Investing in Saint Kitts and Nevis opens you a lot of possibilities. Having a citizenship from that prosperous Caribbean nation entitles you to access all of the government’s privileges, both inside and outside the country. It also includes a fantastic Plan B in the event of an emergency.
The propagation of the latest COVID strain, Omicron, has shown that the pandemic is still far from over. Though the origins of the variation are unknown, it was initially discovered in South Africa and has subsequently spread to other parts of the world.
While the severity of the crisis has decreased globally, owing to increased vaccination rates and other preventative measures, fear of a new mutating variant has prompted countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom, and a number of European Union countries to impose travel restrictions on African countries. African politicians have reacted angrily to the bans, claiming that they do not help the problem and instead undermine the economies of developing countries already reeling from the pandemic’s effects.
For African countries, nationality discrimination is not a new occurrence. Even before the pandemic, African passport holders were subjected to stricter controls and visa bureaucracy, which hampered Africans’ ability to conduct business, access services, and see loved ones. The COVID-19 pandemic is now added to the list of challenges that Africans must overcome if they hope to cross borders.
COVID-19 and Citizenship by Investment
As a result of the pandemic and the resulting travel prohibitions, a growing trend of affluent Africans getting a second citizenship via a popular path known as Citizenship by Investment has emerged. Citizenship and the life-changing benefits that come with it are available to anyone who can make the needed investment, which varies by country.
One of the most significant issues of the twenty-first century has been COVID-19, says Micha Emmett, CEO of CS Global Partners, the world’s leading government consultancy and marketing agency specialised in Citizenship by Investment. “However, many Africans, this has just served to exacerbate pre-existing problems.” Second citizenship aids those who desire to position themselves globally without worry of being held back by their own country.
The Caribbean island of St Kitts and Nevis is home to the industry’s Platinum Standard. It has invited affluent Africans and their families to reside and start enterprises in the country in recent years. The programme is one of the most family-friendly on the market, and its Sustainable Growth Fund option offers the fastest path to second citizenship. Families of four can apply for citizenship for the same fee as a single candidate under a limited-time offer that ends on December 31, 2021, saving $45,000.
CS Global Partners, which is also an official government marketing partner of Citizenship by Investment Programme of St Kitts and Nevis gives the latest information of the programme and its benefits to the investors.