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MALTA: NEW CITIZENSHIP PROGRAM by INVESTMENT

CITIZENSHIP

Citizenship is a link between the person and the State, connected to the exercise of civil rights (e.g. expression of opinions, association, justice), social rights (e.g. health protection, education, employment, pensions) and political rights (e.g. the possibility to apply or elect representatives).

Citizenship can be acquired:

for IUS SANGUINIS, by birth from a parent in possession of citizenship (as in Malta and Italy)

for IUS SOLI, for being born on the territory of the State regardless of the nationality of the parents (as for example in the USA);

for MARRIAGE with a citizen (in some states it is not acquired automatically but is only a prerequisite for naturalization);

for NATURALIZATION or by a measure of public authority to be granted to the recourse of certain conditions or for particular merits.

It is therefore possible to acquire citizenship after a certain number of years of legal residence in a territory or through specific investments.

 

MALTA: NEW CITIZENSHIP PROGRAM FOR INVESTMENT

Malta already had a citizenship program for investment modified now according to a new regulation introduced with Legal Notice n.437 of 20.11.2020.

Obtaining a Maltese passport means having the possibility to live, work, study in all European countries and guarantees the possibility to travel without a visa in 166 countries.

A maximum total of 1500 applications will be accepted for the entire program with a limit of 400 per year.

It is possible to apply for citizenship if you are at least 18 years old, if you do not have a criminal record and only after a minimum period of 12 months of residence in Malta.

The main applicant can also apply for parents living with him or his wife, wife, minor children, adult dependent children under 27 years of age.

 

Two choices are given:

apply after 1 year of residence in Malta
apply after 3 years of residence in Malta with a lower non-refundable contribution.

They are required:

  • non-refundable payment of 740,000 if you have less than 36 months of residence, reduced to 590,000 with at least 36 months. In addition 50,000 for each other family member
  • purchase of a property with a minimum value of Euro 700,000 or rent of a property with a minimum rent of Euro 16,000 per year
  • health insurance
  • agency fee of 10.000 , due diligence fee of 15.000 (10.000 in addition for each dependent family member as wives, children, parents) , residence permit 5.000 (1.000 for each family member), philanthropic donation of Euro 10.000

The process takes 12/15 months to complete.

 

Citizens of Iran, North Korea, Afghanistan, Somalia or other internationally sanctioned states cannot apply.

EU INFRINGEMENT PROCEDURE

In October, the European Commission initiated an infringement and formal notice procedure against Malta, and also against Cyprus, for the Citizenship for investment program, considering that the granting of Citizenship for payment and investment without an effective link with the State is not compatible with a principle of loyal cooperation within the EU.

The Government has two months to reply and if the Commission does not consider the reasons and the reply will issue an opinion on the matter.

The Government has adopted the new program with different terms and conditions compared to the previous one in response also to the EU infringement procedure.

It is necessary to wait for the evolution of the situation and how Malta will respond and what attitude the European Commission will take in this regard.

 

For any need and further information please contact the MaltaWay legal team

 

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