What is Paraguay residence by investment programme
Paraguay invites foreign investors to become permanent residents of the country. The investment programme is operated by the “Unified System of Opening and Closing Companies”, or SUACE. The system was launched in 2013 to boost business development in the country.
A participant of the SUACE programme is obliged to open a company and invest in it at least $70,000. Additional fees for filing an application, creating and registering a company, and getting a residence card are around $14,000.
Investors obtain permanent residence in just three months instead of the regular 2‑year term for other foreigners looking to move to Paraguay.
Requirements for applicants
To qualify as a participant in the SUACE business residency programme, an investor should have no criminal record, open a company in Paraguay, and put in at least $70,000.
The applicant does not need to invest the whole amount at once or confirm the sum is available in their bank account. It is enough to show a business plan according to which the applicant will invest this amount in the development of the company over 10 years.
If the terms of the business plan change, a representative of the SUACE programme may extend it upon request. An investor must keep up with the plan to avoid losing the residency.
Family members of the investor can also apply for residency. They are:
- a spouse;
- minor children;
- unmarried children under 30 years old that depend financially on the applicant;
- unmarried siblings of the main applicant.
11 benefits of Paraguay residency by investment
1. Opportunity to live in Paraguay. Residents stay in the country as much as they want. Also, investors with permanent residency can enter Paraguay freely at any time, even if the borders are closed.
2. Access to social benefits. A resident gets a local ID card called Cedula, which allows them to get the most rights of a citizen of Paraguay. This includes opening bank accounts, getting medical health, and studying in local educational institutions but excludes voting in elections. You may also enter and leave the country freely.
3. A clear path to citizenship. An investor with a status of permanent resident can apply for Paraguay nationality. To obtain citizenship, you need to reside in the country for at least three years, know either Spanish or Guarani language, and provide proof of your investments.
4. Low investment requirements. To get permanent residency, investing a minimum of $70,000 is required. There is no need for a lump sum — the money can be distributed over 10 years.
For comparison, you are required to spend at least $525,000 to get an investor visa in neighbouring Uruguay. The minimum investment requirement for Cyprus permanent residency, one of the affordable programmes in Europe, is €300,000, which should be paid for lumpsum.
5. Tax exemptions. Residency in Paraguay may help you reduce the tax burden. There are no foreign income, inheritance, and property taxes. The tax rates for VAT, corporate, and personal incomes are 10%. For example, the average tax rate of VAT in the European Union is 21%.
6. Safe haven. Paraguay has emerged as a safe haven for investors due to its stable economic and political environment. The country has implemented various reforms to attract foreign investment, offering incentives such as tax breaks, streamlined business procedures, and legal protections. Paraguay's strategic location, abundant natural resources, and growing market potential make it an attractive destination for investors.
7. Affordable cost of living. In the capital of Paraguay, Asuncion, the estimated monthly living cost is $466 for one person and $1,646 for a family of four without rent. Renting a single-bedroom apartment in the city centre costs around $370, and a three-bedroom apartment — approximately $730. It has one of the lowest costs of living in America.
8. An opportunity to conduct business in Latin America. Paraguay is a member of MERCOSUR, together with Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay. It is a free-trade zone, so a Paraguayan citizen can conduct business in more economically developed Latin American countries and export goods and services there without customs duty.
9. Cryptocurrency opportunities. Paraguay is the only country in the world that produces 100% of its energy from hydropower plants. Clean energy attracts cryptocurrency companies. In 2023, at least two big miners, Bitfarms and Pow.re signed contracts in Paraguay to produce energy from hydropower plants. The legislation on cryptocurrency in the country is yet to be adopted.
10. Warm climate. The average temperature in Paraguay throughout the year is +20…25 °C. Summers last from October to March and are hot and rainy, while winters from June to August are mild and do not decrease lower than 16 °C.
11. Appealing culture. Traditions are honoured here: carnivals are held annually, Nyanduti lace is woven, and the majority of the population speaks the language of the Guarani indigenous peoples. There are ruins of colonial buildings of the 17th and 18th centuries in the country.
Documents for the Paraguay “Golden visa”
An investor applies for a residence permit and a business permit at the same time. You need to collect and submit documents personally to the SUACE programme office in Asuncion.
The list of documents includes:
- an international passport with a visa to Paraguay if needed;
- a birth certificate;
- a marriage certificate if applicable;
- a certificate of no criminal records from the country of residence of the applicant;
- a certificate of no criminal records from the police in Paraguay;
- a certificate of no criminal records from Interpol issued by the regional department in Asuncion;
- 6 colour photos;
- a Certificate of Life and Residence issued by the police department of a neighbourhood where a resident is going to live.
The SAUCE office may request some additional documents. The documents must be translated and certified with an apostille or by the Paraguayan embassy in the issuing country. Immigrant Invest lawyers help the applicant at all stages of filing documents.
How to get Paraguay residency as an investor
The whole process of getting a Paraguay residence permit takes at least 3.5 years.
Immigrant Invest conducts its own preliminary Due Diligence to prepare for permanent residence by investment unit check. It helps to identify rejection risks and find a solution in advance.
Immigrant Invest lawyers give the investor a list of personal and financial documents required to participate in the programme. After receiving the documents, specialists translate the papers and certify copies and government forms.
An investor submits the application personally to the office of the SUACE programme in Asuncion. Total costs of all the fees are approximately $14,000.
The card issuance takes up to 90 days. You need to collect it within 6 months from the moment of issuance.
After arriving in Paraguay, the investor needs to establish a company through an appointed representative of the SUACE programme.
Other options for getting Paraguay permanent residency
As a retiree. If a monthly retirement income exceeds approximately $1,022, a retiree can qualify for retirement in Paraguay to obtain permanent residency, regardless of age. They have to be in good health.
As a worker. A professional may get residency in the country. First, they should apply for a temporary permit. It is valid for two years, and during that time they should find a job, start a business, or have other kinds of activity: science, art, education, or sport. Two years later, they may get a permanent residence if you prove your ties with the Paraguayan economy.
With savings. There used to be an option of obtaining a permanent permit to reside in Paraguay by depositing $5,000 in a local bank. However, a recent law cancelled this. Now, it is possible either by investing at least $70,000 or obtaining a temporary permit for two years first.
A further way to Paraguay citizenship
After three years of residing in Paraguay, an investor may apply for citizenship by naturalisation.
Eligibility criteria to become a Paraguay citizen:
- Be over 18 years old.
- Staying in the country for at least 183 days per year for three years prior to the application.
- Keeping up with a business plan of investments.
- No criminal record.
- Knowledge of one of Paraguay's official languages: Spanish or Guarani.
- Knowledge of the national anthem, politics, and history of the country.
With a Paraguay passport, you can travel to 141 countries visa-free, including the European Union, the UK, Japan, Canada, and Australia. A Paraguay citizen may also get a 5-year nonimmigrant business E-2 visa to the country.
A list of documents for citizenship:
- an international passport;
- a Paraguayan ID card;
- a birth certificate;
- a medical certificate;
- a certificate of marriage if applicable;
- certificates of no criminal record from the police of Paraguay and Interpol;
- proof of investment according to the business plan;
- an affidavit issued by the Supreme Court;
- a bank statement.
The documents should be submitted to the Paraguayan Migration Service in person. It may ask for some additional documents. A citizenship application can be considered for up to a few years.
Paraguay recognises multiple citizenship, so foreigners do not need to give up their first nationality.
Key points about Paraguay residency by investment
- An investor may get permanent residency by participating in the SUACE business residency programme. To take part, you need to create a business plan that includes creating a new company and placing at least $70,000 in it over 10 years.
- It normally takes 90 days to get permanent residency in Paraguay. Fees are around $14,000.
- Permanent residence in the country allows an investor to secure a safe haven and get most of the rights of a citizen: opening bank accounts, receiving medical care, and education. Residents also get to conduct business in MERCOSUR countries: Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay.
- After three years of residing in Paraguay, an investor may apply for the country’s passport by naturalisation. To do that, they have to prove the fact of the investments, learn Spanish or Guarani, and learn the national anthem, politics, and history. The process of getting a Paraguay passport can take up to a few years.
Frequently asked questions
You can get permanent residency in Paraguay by participating in the programme of business residency called SUACE. To apply, you need to provide a business plan with future investments of at least $70,000 over 10 years.
Administrative fees for permanent residency in Paraguay are approximately $14,000 in total. You will also need to invest a minimum of $70,000 in a local business. However, you do not need to do it all at once — the sum may be distributed over 10 years.
There is no such thing as Paraguay citizenship by investment. However, an investor may get permanent residence in the country by spending at least $70,000 and spending it for the local economy. After three years of residing in Paraguay as a resident, an investor is eligible to apply for Paraguay citizenship by naturalisation.
You need to have a monthly income of at least $1,022 to retire in Paraguay.
Paraguay offers several advantages for residents. They receive a local ID card, allowing them to access many citizen rights, such as banking, healthcare, and education. Permanent residency in Paraguay may help you reduce the tax burden, as the tax rate for VAT, corporate, and personal income is 10%, and there is no foreign income tax.
Paraguay’s stable political and economic environment, business-friendly reforms, and strategic location make it a safe haven for investors. Residents who stay in the country for three years are eligible to obtain Paraguay nationality by naturalisation.
Yes, Paraguay allows dual citizenship with those countries that have special agreements with Paraguay. For now, it is only Spain and Italy. In other cases, it is allowed in Paraguay to have second citizenship.