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Antigua and Barbuda Attracts Foreign Investors: Expansion of Dependant Definition, Introduction of New Residence Program

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected positively the investment immigration industry: many countries have made some beneficial changes to their economic citizenship programs to maintain them competitive. Antigua and Barbuda is no exception, as the country has set an expanded definition of qualifying dependants, allowing applicants to include more family members in the application. Another new opportunity for investors is the introduction of a brand new program named “Nomad Digital Residence” (NDR). Under its terms, eligible applicants will gain a special resident status and will be able to stay for up to two years with a possibility to work from any spot of the country on a remote basis.

Earlier this month the Citizenship by Investment Unit (CIU) of Antigua and Barbuda published a memorandum, in which an expanded definition of dependants was presented. Now unmarried siblings of the main applicant and / or his / her spouse can be included in the application.

However, siblings are not the only new dependant category ― future spouses of the main applicant and of the dependant children can qualify for citizenship, too. The amended legislation also allows including future children of the main applicant’s children in the application (provided that the child is fully supported by the main applicant).

The fee payable on the application is $50,000 for the main applicant’s spouse-to-be; $10,000 for children of a dependent child below 5 years old; and $20,000 for children of a dependent child aged 6-17.

 The age restrictions for financially dependent children, parents and grandparents of the main applicant and / or his / her spouse have been eased: the required age for children has raised to 30 years old (instead of previous 28 years old), and the age limit for parents has been lowered to 55 years old (compared to prior 58 years).

Another chance for investors to stay in Antigua and Barbuda is the new visa program. Having followed Barbados, Aruba, Bermuda, Georgia, and Estonia offering visas for remote employees and entrepreneurs from all over the globe, Antigua and Barbuda announced the launch of “Nomad Digital Residence” program. According to the Honourable Gaston Browne, the nation’s prime minister, the NDR is designed for people who “meet the requirements of their employers or their clients while working remotely”. The program allows applicants whose employers are based outside the islands to qualify for residence permits valid for two years. “Digital nomads” are required to earn at least $50,000 per year and demonstrate that they have the means to financially support themselves and any accompanying dependants.

The cost of the participation in the program is $1,500 for a single applicant, $2,000 for an applicant with a spouse, and $3,000 for a family of three or more. Along with the application, a non-refundable NDR visa fee is paid. Successful applicants have to maintain health insurance and pay local market rates for access to healthcare during their stay. They are also subject to coronavirus testing.

Antigua and Barbuda has been almost unaffected by the COVID-19, with less than 100 cases recorded since the beginning of the pandemic. Such a safe environment makes the dual-island country a very attractive destination for investors seeking an opportunity to safeguard themselves and their families from the coronavirus spreading. Among other advantages of Antigua and Barbuda as a residence location, are: warm tropical climate, 365 beaches, beautiful evergreen landscapes, modern amenities, and numerous recreation services. The high-quality telecommunication system enables a superb Wi-Fi and cellular coverage, therefore, as mentioned by Mr. Browne, “you can work in any part of the world from Antigua as if you were in your office or home.”

Would you like to obtain citizenship or residence permit of Antigua and Barbuda or to find out about other popular investor immigration programs? On 3 December at 15.00 in London our managing director Victoria Vella will run the final webinar of the year “Top Citizenship and Residency by Investment Programs of 2020”. During this free of charge webinar Victoria will share with you information on the most interesting investor immigration programs of the EU, the Caribbean and the rest of the world with limited time offers valid only until the end of 2020. Moreover, all the attendants will receive a special New Year discount on legal services of GLS Private Office. Register by clicking here.

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