The recently released fourth edition of the CBI Index, published by the Financial Times’ Professional Wealth Management magazine, is a comprehensive ranking system that compares active CBI programmes worldwide. Once again, St Kitts and Nevis’ CBI Programme topped the list.
St Kitts and Nevis boasts the longest-standing CBI Programme in the world and is known for its fast processing time as well as its strict due diligent processes. Part of the appeal of St Kitts and Nevis’ CBI programme is the extensive travel opportunities, as the country continues to increase the number of visa-free and visa-on-arrival destinations for its citizens. It allows ease of access to 70 percent of the world, including the UK, Hong Kong as well as the Schengen zone countries.
There is no residence period, and the investor applies directly for citizenship and the passport. The St Kitts and Nevis CBI Programme is attractive because there is no requirement for minimum physical stay or visits throughout the application process.
While most CBI investment options for St Kitts and Nevis are linked to quick processing times, the Sustainable Growth Fund (SGF) in particular, is known for being the most affordable, direct, and secure route to a second citizenship.
This SGF offers subsidised funding in areas such as infrastructure advancement, tourism promotion, social assistance, education and local entrepreneurship. The SGF route requires a one-off financial contribution in order to qualify for citizenship.
St Kitts and Nevis’ CBI Programme is known as a family-focused Programme and is currently running a limited-time offer allowing investors to add up to three family members for the same investment amount as a single applicant. The cost for a single applicant or family of up to four persons requires an investment of USD 150,000. Applicants then pay USD 10,000 per every additional dependant after that.
For the host country, the objective of a CBI programme is to generate foreign investment, which then gets reinvested into the country to fund development across a range of sectors including education and housing.
This funding for small island economies is of paramount importance, and the CBI Programme has assisted the dual island nation in developing key areas such as education, health, climate change, infrastructure, and tourism. As a result of government investment in public services, including law enforcement, there has also been an annual 30 per cent fall in crime.
The 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 to be considered for economic citizenship, ensuring thorough screening of applicants.
Holding a second passport to this developed Caribbean nation allows one to relish all the social and business benefits enjoyed by locals, while also offering a secure plan B for investors and their families.