St Lucia’s New Half-Price Citizenship Option and Other Discounts
The government of St Lucia this month has announced significant amendments to the country’s citizenship by investment program with a view to supporting the economy amidst the COVID-19 pandemic and attracting foreign investors up to the end of 2020. These include 50% discount on the minimum investment required to apply for citizenship through the acquisition of Government Bonds.
St Lucia’s citizenship by investment program was launched in 2015 and since then has been internationally successful. Investors may choose to contribute to the National Economic Fund (NEF), purchase real estate, invest in government bonds or start an enterprise project.
The program has become more affordable for investors due to the latest changes. The most notable of them is the introduction of a new non-interest-bearing bond option, named the COVID-19 Relief Bond. This option is available to invest in only until the end of 2020, and it facilitates the citizenship acquisition by halving the minimum investment threshold, making it $250,000. The bond holding period depends on the amount invested and the number of applicant’s qualifying dependants.
Thus, a single applicant will be able to purchase the bond with a five-year holding period for $250,000. For an applicant with one dependant the bond amount remains the same, but the holding period is extended to six years. Applicants with up to four dependents will pay from $250,000 to $300,000 for the bonds with seven-year and five-year holding period respectively. The bond purchase price increases by $15,000 for each additional qualifying dependent (fifth and more). The investment amount is refunded in full at the end of the holding period. The government administrative fee has been also reduced from $50,000 to $30,000, and processing fees have been waived.
The changes in St Lucia’s citizenship by investment program have positively affected the National Economic Fund too. The minimum contribution amount for a single applicant has not been amended and is still $100,000, but an applicant with a spouse will be able to receive a 15% discount, thus contributing $140,000 instead of $165,000 to the NEF. A family of four members will contribute $150,000, down from the previous $190,000. $15,000 is added to the contribution requirement for any additional dependents beyond the family of four.
Another noteworthy amendment concerns new-born children of St Lucia’s economic citizens. The government has drastically reduced the fee for registering a child below 12 months old — from $25,000 to $500.
St Lucia offers very competitive investment options, which are worth considering when choosing the jurisdiction for second citizenship. St Lucia’s passport allows to travel to over 130 countries visa-free and it has fast processing times of 60-90 days. It allows inclusion of dependent children below 25 and parents over 65 years old. All the application process can be done remotely in the comfort of your home. No travel to St Lucia is required.
During the Coronavirus lockdown, the Citizenship Unit of St Lucia continues to be operational. Currently, submission of files is made via the online portal and the additional documents can be sent via email with the hard copies to follow once the lockdown is over.
Our team of immigration experts has vast experience working with St Lucia citizenship by investment program.
Contact us today and we will be happy to answer all your questions regarding this program and provide you with all the necessary information.