Portugal and Greece have provided EU residency for thousands of non-EU investors through Golden Visa programs

During the pandemic restrictions, most countries opened their borders only to their citizens and residents. It caused a sudden change in the lives of most people with a high travel rhythm. Investors reassessed their priorities and turned to opportunities that highlight increased mobility and safety. This turns into a breakpoint for residency by investment programs’ future.

Have you heard about these programs before? If not, you are in the right place!

According to the Portuguese Immigration and Borders Service (SEF), 9,444 foreign investors gained residency through investment in Portugal. The data belong to the dates between 2012 and January 2021.

Greece follows a similar pattern as well. It provided residency for 8,011 foreign investors through Greece Golden Visa. Enterprise Greece indicates that the data are from the dates between 2013 and January 2021.

So, what is attractive about these programs?

These programs are called Golden Visa programs. They provide non-EU citizens EU residency and even EU citizenship. The logic of Portuguese Golden Visa investment funds route is basic: invest in the country and get residency in the first place. Once you’ve qualified for the next steps, get EU citizenship eventually.

Other significant benefits of these programs include tax reductions and ease of mobility.

Ease of mobility for your family

A striking benefit of Golden Visa is that you can easily travel between two countries. The reason is that you are regarded as a resident of this second country. So, you won’t deal much with the bureaucratic process.

Your family members can also avail themselves of this benefit. In fact, they can benefit from any right you can as well. This type of privilege has gained more importance, especially after Covid-19. While there’s been a strict restriction of mobility for the whole world, you can be exempt from it as a holder of two residencies. This means that you can reach better healthcare services and a safer environment easily.

Portugal and Greece have proven their success regarding the healthcare services in the country. Furthermore, Forbes elected the Alentejo and Algarve region in Portugal as some of the destinations to go after the pandemic. Corfu and Preveza in Greece are the other must-go destinations post-Covid, according to Forbes and European Best Destinations (EBD). Forbes emphasizes that these countries have handled the pandemic quite well through successful precautions.

So, in times of unexpected conditions, these destinations can work as shelters from bigger problems in your home country.

Ease of mobility for your business

Along with your family, your business can also benefit from this expansion of mobility. You can expand your business in another country such as through your Golden Visa Portugal. In fact, Portugal is doing well in this area as well. Foreign direct investment into the country has increased in the last few years. The 2020 EY Attractiveness Survey tells us this fact. It shows that in the digital sector, foreign direct investment projects almost tripled only in 2019.  It also indicates that the tech sector keeps growing, too.

Furthermore, the total yield into the country from foreign investment in investment funds is already €21,496,461.00. What is more interesting is that it reached this number only in three years. So, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that the startup sector in Portugal looks promising to foreign investors. Within these three years, there are already around 60 investors who invested in this option for Portuguese residency, says SEF.

Favorable tax regulations for foreign investors

The Non-Habitual Resident (NHR) program is one of the well-known tax schedules for foreigners. You can be exempt from taxes on most of your foreign income. Just shift your tax residency to Portugal. The program also requires you to have the right to reside in Portugal. Your Portugal Golden Visa already provides you this right.

Retirees can also benefit from this tax schedule, too. Their foreign pension will be taxed at a rate of only 10% for ten years.

Greece offers a similar tax regulation for retirees if they move their tax residency to Greece. In this case, all of their foreign income will be taxed at 7% for ten years.

All these tax schedules are available for you to enjoy once you obtain your Golden Visa. An important condition to benefit from the tax schedules is to be a resident of the country. So, a Golden Visa gives you this right in the first place. The rest becomes easier after this point.

What are the investment options for a Golden Visa?

There are a few investment options to get a Golden Visa, in general. In Portugal, however, the most common investment option is through the property purchase. Of 9,444; 8,881 investors obtained residency through real estate purchase. Other options in Portugal include capital transfer for investment funds or other capital transfers to the related institutions/units in the country.

Note that Greece offers the lowest investment amount for EU residency, which is only a minimum of €250,000. Other investment options include investment in government bonds or bank deposits etc.

Portugal, on the other hand, offers four different investment patterns for property purchase. They include a minimum of €500,000 and €400,000 investment options. The latter is an alternative to the former if the latter is in a low-density area. Other options are a minimum of €350,000 and €280,000. €350,000 option is available when the property is at least 30 old or when it is located in an urban rehabilitation area. €280,000 option is available when such property is also in a low-density area as well.

A promising lifestyle is waiting for you

So, choose the suitable option and make your investment. Then, apply for your Golden Visa. Get residency in just a few months and enjoy all these privileges without losing much time.  Note that both Portugal and Greece prove that they have many amenities ready for foreign investors as well. The special taxation schedules for foreigners, the quality international schools, and the healthcare system rankings are proof of this. So, a single action of investment will bring many other advantages within itself.

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