Antigua and Barbuda Citizenship By Investment Program 2020 – The Definitive Guide

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Looking to obtain an Antigua & Barbuda passport by investment in 2020? With contributions from only $100,000 or a very property investment requirement, the Antigua CIP is your key to peace of mind and greater global mobility. Discover why more African nationals are choosing Antigua for Citizenship by Investment, or contact us now for a free consultation.

About Antigua and Barbuda

 

Situated where the Atlantic meets the Caribbean, Antigua and Barbuda is an island nation comprising two large islands, Barbuda and Antigua, as well as a number of secondary islands. According to 2018 estimates, the island nation was home to a population just shy of 100,000 citizens. The former colony gained independence from Britain on 1 November 1981.

Queen Elizabeth II serves as the current Queen of the country. Its politics takes lace within a framework of a unitary, parliamentary democratic monarchy. The country is a member of the United Nations, the Commonwealth of Nations, the World Trade Organisation and CARICOM, among other bodies.

Tourism is the country’s biggest economic contributor, accounting for over 50% of its GDP. The The country is an internationally sought after tourism destination, boasting world class beaches and a host of luxury hotels and lodges set in an idyllic Caribbean location. It has been nominated for 8 World Travel Awards in 2020.

Since 2000, however, this sector experienced a significant reduction in demand, leading to fiscal strain, and ultimately contributing to the need for the creation of the country’s Citizenship By Investment program.

The country’s banking and financial services sector is an important economic contributor as well. Agricultural production is centered mainly on meeting domestic demand, with limited water supply and a shortage of labour, caused by locals pursuing higher paid jobs in construction and tourism, contributing to the sector’s limited scope.

The official language of Antigua and Barbuda is English, however Antiguan and Barbudan Creole is widely spoken also.

About the Antigua and Barbuda Citizenship By Investment Program

Launched in 2013, the Antigua CIP is one of the youngest programs of its kind in the Caribbean.  

The government adopted the program as a mechanism to promote economic growth, attract developments and increase foreign direct investment. The income from this program is typically used for public and private infrastructure development projects, and is deployed with a view to benefit the citizens of the country.

Prospective applicants have the option to make a non-refundable government donation, priced from $100,000 for a single applicant, or to invest in government approved real estate. In the latter instance, the investment must be maintained for a minimum of 5 years. A key draw card for the program is the fact that the primary applicant as well as their spouse and dependent family members can be issued with passports in as little as 6 months.

For most African investors – frequently hailing from Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana and Tanzania – having a Plan B and enjoying the convenience of visa-free international travel are the key reasons for obtaining second citizenship. An Antiguan passport enables the bearer to spend up to 3 months (90 days) travelling within the European Union countries in any given 6 month (180 days) period.

Additionally, the advantage of visa-free travel (or visa upon arrival agreements) to 149 countries compares really well against the passports of Nigeria (45 countries), Kenya (70 countries) and Ghana (64 countries).

 

Why choose Antigua and Barbuda for economic citizenship

 

  1. UNRIVALLED AFFORDABILITY: With National Development Fund (NDF) contributions starting from $100,000 for a single applicant, the A&B CIP is one of the most affordable ones in the world.

  2. SIMPLE PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS: Whether you choose the NDF route or the property investment route, the requirements for investment citizenship are simple, easy and straightforward to meet.

  3. FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT: Say good to cumbersome UK and Schengen visa applications for good: As of January 2020, bearers of the A&B passport enjoy visa free access, or visa upon arrival, to 124 countries worldwide, including the EU Schengen area, the UK and Hong Kong, to name but a few key business destinations.

  1. FAST APPROVALS: As of January 2020, Citizenship By Investment applications are typically approved within 2 to 3 months for the primary applicant, and your entire family can obtain their economic citizenship status and acquire second passports within 6 months.

  2. DUAL CITIZENSHIP RECOGNISED: Antigua and Barbuda recognises dual citizenship, which means that you won’t be forced to give up your current citizenship and its associated privileges to gain the benefits of Antiguan citizenship. Moreover, unlike is the case with programs like the Malta Citizenship by Investment Program, Antigua and Barbuda does not report the acquisition of investment citizenship to other countries, nor are the names of new investment citizens published in the public domain. The latter fact makes the program highly attractive to applicants who value discretion and privacy.

  3. NO MINIMUM STAY REQUIREMENTS: As is the case with most other Caribbean Economic Citizenship programs, Antigua and Barbuda does not enforce any minimum stay requirements. You don’t even need to travel there during the application process if you don’t want to. You do, however, have to reside in-country with the family members who are included in your citizenship application for a minimum of 5 days within a period of 5 years.

  4. LEAVE A CROSS-GENERATIONAL LEGACY: Antiguan Investment Citizenship is inherited by future dependents, but only if they are born in the country. The only Caribbean CIP that makes provision for citizenship rights being extended to third generations, i.e. to your grandchildren, is the Grenada Citizenship Program. Be sure to clarify this issue with the professional citizenship firm assisting you with your second citizenship application. The A&B passport must be renewed every 5 years, yet personal attendance in the country is not required in order to do this. It is important to note that only the Grenada.

  5. FAMILY INCLUSION: Dependent parents over the age of 58 and single children up to the age of 28 years are entitled to apply for citizenship along with the primary applicant

  6. ATTRACTIVE TAXATION: Antigua and Barbuda enables economic citizens to become tax residents. Gaining this status means that you’ll be exempt from paying any dividend, wealth and inheritance taxes. Moreover, personal income tax was cancelled in mid 2016. Gaining tax residency status in A&B also has the following benefits:

  • No income tax is levied on your worldwide income or assets

  • No capital gains taxes are charged on your worldwide income or assets

  • No wealth taxes are charged on your worldwide assets.

In order to become tax resident in 2020, you’ll be required to:

  • Spend 30 days per year on the island

  • Gain official approval for permanent residence, subject to the purchase or rental of real estate in the country and obtaining a Tax Identification Number.

  • Have an annualized income of $100,000 or more

  • Pay an annual flat tax of $20,000. 

Program Investment Options: 2020

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  1. The NDF Donation Route (Non-Refundable):

  • For an individual applicant and for families with up to 4 members (applicant, spouse and 2 dependent children): $100,000, with a government processing fee of $25,000.

  • For families of more than 4 members: $125,000, with a government processing fee of $25,000. An additional fee of $15,000 will be payable for the fifth applicant, and for every additional person applying.

  1. The Property Investment Route:

Single investor / family: A minimum $400,000 investment in government approved real estate, to be held for a minimum period of 5 years. Property registration, taxes and processing fees are applicable as well.

Investor fund pooling: During a Limited Time Offer (LTO), 2 investors could invest $200,000 each in a joint investment, with both applicants and their dependent family members qualifying for second citizenship. This offer was formally set to expire in late 2019, so be sure to confirm the availability thereof with the citizenship firm assisting you with your Antiguan citizenship application in 2020.

  1. The Direct Business Investment Route: The direct purchase of a business worth at least $1.5 million, purchased as an individual, can serve as the basis upon which citizenship is applied for. Alternatively, a joint business investment can be made by a group of investors, providing that the total investment is $5 million, and that each investor invests a minimum of $400,000.

Additional Application Requirements:

 

In addition to making either the minimum required donation or investment, you’ll also have to meet the following criteria: 

  • You have to be older than 18 years.

  • You have to be of outstanding character and international standing.

  • You have to have a clear criminal record.

  • You have to be in excellent health.

  • You have to have a high personal net worth. 

Which countries are restricted from applying to become investment citizens of A&B?

As of January 2020, nationals of Afghanistan Iran, North Korea, Iraq, Somalia, Yemen and Sudan are restricted from applying for the program.

 

How does the Antigua and Barbuda CIP compare to other Caribbean economic citizenship programmes?

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PROGRAMME MINIMUM INVESTMENT (1 PAX) VISA FREE COUNTRIES PROCESSING TIME
ST KITTS & NEVIS CIP $150,000 150 2-3 months
ANTIGUA & BARBUDA CIP 2020 $100,000 147 3-4 months
DOMINICA CIP 2020 $100,000 135

2-3 months

GRENADA CIP $200,000 130 3-4 months
SAINT LUCIA CIP 2020 $100,000 144 3-4 months