Due diligence plays a central role in establishing and maintaining the integrity of Citizenship by Investment (CBI) programmes and equips governments with the resources to make critical risk-based decisions.
Fundamentally, due diligence is a comprehensive term to describe a sequence of investigative processes that identify, validate and verify information about an individual. Due diligence procedures span the entire CBI application processes from assessing applications through agents, to final decision making by authorities.
Effective due diligence, when it comes to any CBI programme, is critical to verify an investor’s identity, background, financial status and reputation. More importantly, it aims to clarify whether the wealth of the applicants is acquired through legitimate means and to identify valid sources of income.
The CBI Index, published by the Financial Times’ Professional Wealth Management magazine, is a comprehensive ranking system that compares active CBI programmes. The Index works on nine pillars that each programme is assessed upon, one of the most significant being due diligence.
The due diligence pillar awards top marks to the country that obtains the greatest amount of information on and from its applicants before granting them citizenship. Factors include internal and external due diligence checks, police clearance certificates, fingerprinting or other biometric data collection, source of funds analysis, and bans on high-risk countries of origin.
Emerging year on year as the most reputable and respected CBI Programmes, the Caribbean countries of Dominica and St Kitts and Nevis hinge the integrity of their Programmes on their stringent due diligent processes.
The Federation of St Kitts and Nevis
St Kitts and Nevis is the worlds’ longest-standing CBI programme in the world and has been setting the standard in the CBI industry for decades. The dual island nation continues to top the list, as it meticulously maintains its commitment to rigorous due diligence. It also once again shows that it is the nation with the fastest citizenship timeline.
The dual-island nation also announced earlier this year that it would be rolling out biometric-shared background checks. This forms a compulsory part of its due diligence process that every applicant must pass in order to be considered for economic citizenship, ensuring thorough screening of applicants.
The county is also currently running a limited-time offer allowing investors to add up to three family members for the same investment amount as a single applicant. It is also the only country in the world that promises to process applications within 60 days under its Accelerated Application Processing (AAP).
The Commonwealth of Dominica
Another Caribbean nation known for its robust due diligence is the nature-rich island of Dominica. Today, Dominica has one of the fastest-growing economies in the region, thanks to the country’s CBI Programme which allows well-vetted investors and their families contribute to a government fund or pre-approved real estate on the island in exchange for citizenship.
Dominica is world-renowned for being one of the world’s most efficient, transparent and affordable CBI programmes, with strict due diligence measures. Dominica offers the most affordable citizenship with its donation option, and applicants do not need to travel to or reside in the country. Dominica’s lush vegetation and investment in clean energy positions it as the best Caribbean nation for life expectancy and quality of life.