The Portugal Golden Visa Program is a five-year residency-by-investment program. Investors can obtain residency permits for themselves and their families. After holding a residency permit for 5 years, visa holders may apply for permanent residence or citizenship.
To be eligible for a golden visa, applicants must:
Qualifying investment options
Before any application can be filed, the applicant must make a qualifying investment, which can be any of the following:
The investor can buy Portuguese public debt instruments, acquire an equity stake in a Portuguese company or deposit the funds in a Portuguese bank account.
No minimum investment amount is required. The investor needs to employ at least 10 workers at a minimum wage. Employees must have a work contract and comply with social security obligations. There are no restrictions on the activities or the area where the jobs are created.
Applicants can invest in new or old property. All property types qualify. It can be commercial, tourism purposes, rental purposes, or serve as a second home, or for retirement. It need not be a single property, and all properties may be rented out.
Low-density areas are areas with less than 100 residents per square km.
To qualify, the property must be at least 30 years old and undergoing renovations, or the property must be located in an urban regeneration area. It need not be a single property.
Investors can invest through public institutions for the artistic production, recovery, and maintenance of Portuguese cultural heritage.
Investors can invest in research undertaken by public or private institutions as part of the national scientific and technological system. In low-density areas, the amount is reduced to €280,000. Investment may be through a sole shareholder limited liability company.
Investing in an existing limited liability Portuguese company, provided that the investment increases the share capital and creates or safeguards at least 5 full-time permanent jobs for at least 3 years, or investing to incorporate a limited liability company in Portugal and create at least 5 positions.
Portugal golden visa venture capital funds are managed by fund managers accredited by the Portuguese regulatory body. Funds are usually managed in start-ups or medium-sized projects with good growth potential. Investors can choose from a variety of sectors like energy, industry, technology, and real estate.
Proposed changes to the scheme by the Portuguese government were suspended due to Covid-19. The changes would have blocked investors from investing in central Lisbon and Porto and limit real estate investments to inland municipalities from 2021.
It remains to be seen what the Portuguese government decides to do in the future.
CONSULTATION FROM LONDON IMMIGRATION LAWYERS – Portugal Golden Visa
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