In a statement issued on 25 March, CBIU Director Emmanuel Nanthan reassured stakeholders that the CBIU would remain operational during the Coronavirus lockdown.
He highlighted that:
✓ CBIU staff would be working in restricted premises
✓ the CBIU would accept and process applications submitted on its online portal
✓ physical submissions of required forms and documents would be halted, with the proviso that such forms and documents would be “required at a later date”
✓ rules on document expiry would be relaxed (“Forms and documents that have not expired at the time of upload onto our online portal will be deemed to have been submitted in a timely fashion even if they have expired by the time they are submitted to the Unit in physical form”)
Dominica has had to process applications remotely in the past – most notably, in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in 2017, which destroyed much of the nation’s infrastructure. Citizenship by investment processing, however, remained efficient.
What does this mean for me?
If you have already submitted an application to the CBIU, then you should not be affected by the CBIU’s internal decision to process remotely. However, you may experience some delays attributable to the work of external due diligence firms. These firms may find it difficult to reach out to local bodies in countries where people are living under self-quarantine and social distancing conditions.
If you have yet to submit your application to the CBIU, ensure you complete all forms and collect all supporting documents. You may send copies of these documents to your Authorised Agent, who will, in turn, send them to the CBIU. However, the CBIU has made it clear that it will later request your original documents.
The advantage of submitting your application online is that the CBIU can start its due diligence review – meaning it’ll be much quicker for the CBIU to finalise that review once life returns to normality. This also means you will receive your citizenship sooner, and that you can then apply for your new passport.
How can I find out more?
If you have any questions on the citizenship by investment process in Dominica, or on the forms and documents you will need in order to complete your citizenship application, contact our experts at CS Global Partners.