Bulgarian Passport By Investment Programme 2020 – The Definitive Guide

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Looking to obtain Bulgarian Residency or Citizenship by investment in 2020? Find out more about the benefits of the Bulgarian Citizenship By Investment Program for Nigerians and Kenyans below, or contact us now for more information. Note: The Bulgarian citizenship program is currently suspended. Contact us for more information on alternative EU Citizenship By Investment Programmes in 2020.

About Bulgaria’s Investor Programme for Residence and Citizenship

 

Launched in 2009, the Bulgarian CIP was amended in 2013 with a view to make it more attractive to foreign investors. The Bulgarian government waived the language requirement, and also started recognizing dual citizenship in order to reduce potential friction points and encourage migrant investors to choose the Bulgarian programme over those of Malta, Cyprus, Moldova and Montenegro.

The programme offers 2 options:

  1. Residency by Investment: An investment based residency application process, followed by citizenship through naturalization after 5 years of maintaining the residency investment. In order to become eligible to apply for Bulgarian residency and eventual citizenship, you have to invest a minimum of €512,292 in Bulgarian Government Bonds or other government approved asset classes (e.g. property through a business structure). A €200,000 non-refundable banking fee to source a bond is also an option. Duration: This is a 5-year path to the citizenship application; the investment serving as the basis for residency must be maintained for a minimum of 5 ears.

  • A fast-track Citizenship by Investment route, whereby the investor can lodge an application for citizenship after having maintained permanent residency status for 12 months. After 12 months of residency, the initial investment is doubled to €1,022,584. Citizenship is granted at the beginning of year 3, however the programmes requires investors to maintain their investment for a period of 5 years.

While the programme, which offers a fast-track, direct path to citizenship option, was very appealing from a pricing perspective, it did not gain sufficient market traction and was consequently suspended in late 2019 amid strong criticism of golden passport programmes by the EU.

Benefits of Bulgarian Citizenship For Nigerian Nationals

EU FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT: Gaining Bulgarian residency affords you the ability to travel, study or work visa free in 28 EU countries, as well as Liechtenstein, Iceland, Switzerland and Norway.

THE ULTIMATE EU PLAN B DESTINATION: The Bulgarian Passport Programme features no requirement to physically reside in Bulgaria.

PASSPORT POWER: A Bulgarian passport enables you to travel visa free, or with visa upon arrival, to over 170 countries around the world.

LOWER EU TUITION FEES: Children of EU nationals enjoy the right to pay lower tuition fees for their education within the EU.

FREE INTER-UNION MOVEMENT OF CAPITAL: Transfer funds between EU Member States, purchase property in any EU Member State, and invest in any type of legal business activity across the EU.

FREE MOVEMENT OF GOODS: All goods produced within the EU can be freely transferred between other EU Member States.

UPGRADE YOUR QUALITY OF LIFE: Bulgaria’s political stability and high standard of living makes it an excellent choice for second residency or citizenship in the EU. The quality of its state and private schools and medical facilities is consistently rated highly, and the country boasts one of the lowest crime rates in Europe.

DUAL CITIZENSHIP RECOGNISED: Bulgaria recognizes dual citizenship, so you don’t need to give up your primary citizenship to gain the benefits of a Bulgarian passport.

NO GLOBAL TAXATION: Income derived outside Bulgaria is not subject to taxation.

STRATEGIC LOCATION: Bulgaria is well situated as a trade hub, linking Europe, Africa Asia and the Middle East.

The Bulgaria Golden Visa Application Process

The Application Process: Standard Approach

  1. Open a Bulgarian Bank Account with an authorized Government Bank (our associates can facilitate this).

  2. Transfer €512,292 into your new bank account for the purchase of the Bulgarian Government Bonds, or;

  3. Pay a €200,000 non-refundable banking fee to source a bond.

  4. Government Bonds are purchased on your behalf, and an investment certificate is issued.

  5. The documentation for your Investor Visa (Type D Visa) is prepared.

  6. Your application for Permanent Residence is submitted. Approvals are typically completed within 30 to 40 days after submission.

  7. The full investment and any profit will become available after 5 years of your permanent residency having been issued. This is the minimum period required by, law unless you decide to opt for the Fast Track Citizenship option:

  8. Your citizenship application is submitted after your permanent residency has been maintained for 5 years.

Application Approach: The Fast Track Citizenship option 

  1. At 11 months after your permanent residency has been issued, you must prepare new personal documents.

  2. At 12 months after your permanent residency card has been issued, you’ll be required to invest an additional €512,292 into Bulgarian Government Bonds or other qualifying investments, thereby doubling your investment. The full investment and profit will be available to the investor 2 years after the passport is issued. This is the minimum period required by law on the fast track option.

In both instances, after holding permanent residency status for the minimum periods stipulated, your Bulgarian Passport will be issued 6 months after the submission of the Citizenship Application.

 

Bulgarian Passport: Visa Free Countries 2020

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As of the beginning of 2020, the Bulgarian passport affords you the to visa free travel, or visa upon arrival, to over 170 countries around the world, including Austria, Canada, Australia, Belgium, Cyprus the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland. France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, the UK, Peru, Mexico, Panama, Fiji Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, the Bahamas, Hong Kong, Kenya, Malaysia, Morocco, New Zealand, Albania, Japan, Moldova, South Korea, Taiwan, Lebanon, Egypt, Indonesia, Dominica, the Philippines and Thailand.