The move comes after almost a year of speculation on whether Russia would go through with the initiative. In May 2020, the first draft was presented, and the Russian government has now approved the bill. The next step would be discussing the bill during the Cabinet’s Autumn session, with the potential of it coming into force in mid-2022.
Golden visas refer to the process whereby an investor contributes to the host nation’s economy, subsequently gaining permanent residency along with the added perks. For those who choose to settle in Russia, benefits include access to social services like medical insurance, the right to move freely across the country, the opportunity to set up a business and visa-free travel to roughly 118 other countries and territories across the world.
To qualify for residency, an applicant must either invest 10 million rubles (US$133,450) into a business or purchase real estate worth 30 million rubles (US$400,528).
“Russia joins a growing list of nations that offer residency, or citizenship, by investment programmes. Many governments are seeing how viable and lucrative these programmes are in encouraging national development, particularly as countries begin to recover from the economic fallout of COVID-19,” says Micha Emmett, CEO of CS Global Partners.
“However, with many other affordable options on the market, with decades worth of experience, it’ll be interesting to see the profile of clients that invest in the programme.”
If implemented, the initiative promises to bring both revenue and jobs to the Russian Federation, a much-needed advantage as most countries attempt to bounce back from the economic downturn triggered by the coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent lockdowns.
Russia’s golden visa also has the potential to be the most inclusive programme on the market. Qualifying investors can include the following in their applications, accounting for up to five generations:
- Spouses of children
- Spouses of parents
While Golden Visas referral of residency rights, Citizenship by Investment Programmes are also just as popular and grant citizenship to successful applicants who make an investment into a government fund.
Currently, the Caribbean Citizenship by Investment Programmes offer the most family exclusive offers available. Last year, the Commonwealth of Dominica widened its definition of dependants allowing a more comprehensive selection of family members to include in an application. The change incorporates adult children, siblings, parents, grandparents and new spouses.
Meanwhile, St Kitts and Nevis’ limited time offer under its Sustainable Growth Fund enables families of up to four to gain citizenship for $150,000 rather than $195,000, the same as a single applicant.