Wealthy people who participate in European residency by investment programs sometimes benefit from being allowed to acquire citizenship faster than by naturalization. But all the same, investors will need at least 5 years, and often up to 10 years, to get a European passport.
If the investor’s goal is to get the opportunity to travel visa-free in the shortest time possible, then the St Kitts and Nevis citizenship is a good alternative.
Opportunities provided with the St Kitts and Nevis passport
The St Kitts and Nevis citizenship by investment (CBI) program is one of the most respected in the world. It has been operating since 1984 and is the oldest program in the Caribbean. The St Kitts and Nevis passport is highly rated among entrepreneurs and wealthy people. For example, in 2014, Pavel Durov, one of the founders of VKontakte and Telegram, became a citizen of the country.
Saint Kitts and Nevis citizenship allows to visit more than 150 countries without visas, including the countries of the Schengen arearnand the UK. A citizen of Saint Kitts and Nevis can get a 10-year US tourist visa in 2-3 weeks.
The fastest and easiest way to obtain citizenship of Saint Kitts and Nevis by investment is through a special state CBI program. An applicant invests in the country's economy from $150,000 and, on average, receives a passport in 4 months.
Interesting facts about St Kitts and Nevis
Only 51,000 people live on the two islands of St Kitts and Nevis. The state is located to the east of Cuba and the Dominican Republic.
Saint Kitts and Nevis was a British colony until 1983. The country's legal system is based on English law. The taxation system allows to optimize tax payments. There are no taxes on gifts, inheritance, capital gains, dividends in the country.
The country is part of the British Commonwealth, and its formal ruler is the British Queen. They communicate in the country in English, and the main currency is the East Caribbean dollar. For reference, 1 US dollar = 2.7 East Caribbean dollars.
Saint Kitts and Nevis is a combination of tropical nature, beautiful beaches and respectability. The capital Basseterre is the center of business, culture and fashion. Many Hollywood stars come here to relax and go shopping.
The country's economy is based on tourism and agriculture. There are many luxurious hotels and a developed tourist infrastructure. On the islands, mainly sugar cane, coffee, and cotton are grown.
How to get Saint Kitts and Nevis citizenship: requirements for investors
To obtain a St. Kitts and Nevis passport by investment, you need to make a contribution to the state fund of $150,000 or invest in real estate from $200,000. Investing in real estate is a profitable way to obtain a second citizenship. The investor will be able to return the investment in 5-7 years. Registration of Saint Kitts and Nevis citizenship under the investment program takes 3-6 months.
Together with the investor, his spouse, children under 30 years old, parents over 55 years old, brothers and sisters up to 30 years old can participate in the program.
The main requirements for children over 18, parents and siblings are the age and a complete financial dependence on the main applicant. In addition, brothers and sisters must not be married or have children.
The costs of the program depend on the composition of the investor's family. In each case, an individual calculation is made.
To get a Saint Kitts and Nevis passport, you do not need to come to the country to complete the documents. You can receive documents at a convenient address for you.
Which investment option to choose
The easiest way is to make a non-refundable contribution to the Sustainable Development Fund. This option is chosen by about half of the investors. The disadvantage of this option follows from its name: the investor loses his investment. On the other hand, he will have no worries related to the subsequent sale of the asset.
Investors who choose real estate plan at least a return on investment. But often investing in real estate in St. Kitts and Nevis brings income. Over the past 10 years, prices for tourist real estate in the country have been growing on average by 2-3% per year. During the ownership of real estate, the investor can receive rental income from 3% per annum.
Real estate investment return period under the citizenship program
|Investment amount||Payback period|
Government-approved real estate can be purchased under the St Kitts and Nevis Citizenship Program. These are large five-star hotels. The investor can purchase a share in the project, apartments, villas. Buying a share is the least expensive option, the amount of investment will be from $200,000. Apartments cost from $400,000 to $1 million, villas — from $2 million.
To date, more than 80 projects have been approved. If you are planning to apply for citizenship of Saint Kitts and Nevis by real estate investment, we will tell you about all the projects and help you choose the best ones.
Cost of St Kitts and Nevis citizenship
Program participation costs include investment, Due Diligence fee and other government fees. The total cost depends on the investment option and the number of family members of the applicant.
The Due Diligence fee, regardless of the option chosen, is charged to all adult participants. It is $7,500 for an investor and $4,000 for other family members over 16 years of age.
Also, regardless of the option, a fee for preliminary check by the citizenship by investment unit, processing documents, issuance of a certificate of naturalization, a passport fee, and a bank commission are paid. These are insignificant amounts. For example, for a family of 4, these expenses will be approximately $3,500.
The amount of a non-refundable contribution to the state fund depends on the composition of the family:
- $150,000 一 for one investor,
- $175,000 一 for the investor and the spouse,
- $195,000 一 for the investor and 3 members of his family.
The amount of investment in real estate does not depend on the composition of the family. It is important when an investor plans to return the investment. If an investor is willing to wait 7 years, he can invest $200,000. If he wants to return the investment in 5 years, and this is the minimum period, it is necessary to invest from $400,000.
For the real estate option, you will have to pay an additional government fee. Its value depends on the age and degree of relationship of the program participant.
Real estate option fee
|Member of the family||Fee|
|Child or parent||$10,050|
Procedure for obtaining St Kitts and Nevis citizenship
Preliminary Due Diligence at Immigrant Invest. First, Immigrant Invest conducts a preliminary Due Diligence check in 2 days. This allows to reduce the risk of refusal under the program to 1% and think over the list of documents in advance. Properly prepared documents will help avoid clarifying requests from the CBI unit. The investor will receive a passport without delay.
Immigrant Invest is one of the few companies in the industry that has its own Compliance Department. A certified Compliance Anti Money Laundering Officer assesses your situation. Based on his opinion, we will select the most suitable programs for you.
Preparation of documents. When you have chosen the investment option under the Saint Kitts and Nevis program, the preparation of documents for participation in the program begins.
Documents required for participation in the St Kitts and Nevis program:
- Copies of passports of all adult program participants, birth certificates of children who do not have a passport.
- An application form.
- 6 passport photos.
- A certificate of good conduct.
- A marriage certificate.
- A confirmation of the source of origin of investment funds.
- When investing in real estate: a copy of the contract of sale, as well as confirmation of the transfer of title (right) to the acquired property.
All documents must be notarized and translated into English. In addition, we fill out government forms.
Preparation of documents on average lasts 2 weeks.
Submission of documents. Documents are submitted to the CBI unit strictly through a licensed agent which is Immigrant Invest. At the same time, the investor pays the Due Diligence fee.
The CBI unit starts Due Diligence. This is the most important stage of the program, which requires serious preparation. The check lasts from 3 to 6 months.
Application approval. When the CBI unit has approved the application, the investor gets up to 3 months to invest. When the investment is made and all related fees are paid, a certificate of naturalization and a passport are issued.
We receive documents and send them by delivery service to an address convenient for the investor.
The passport of St. Kitts and Nevis is renewed every 10 years, for children under 16 一 every 5 years. We will remind you in advance of the need to renew your passport and help with this.
Important details of the program
The investor and his family members have no obligation to reside in the country either before or after obtaining citizenship. This is convenient for investors because, in our experience, most investors get St Kitts and Nevis citizenship to travel without visas.
If the investor sells the property before the deadline set by the program, he will lose his citizenship. But an investor who has fulfilled all the conditions of the program receives citizenship for life.
Citizenship of Saint Kitts and Nevis is hereditary. This means that the grandchildren of an investor can obtain citizenship by naturalization if their parents (investor’s children) already have passports of the country by investment. Not all Caribbean programs provide this opportunity.
Why apply for St. Kitts and Nevis citizenship
We have already talked about the main advantage of the passport of St. Kitts and Nevis which is the ability to travel around the world without visas. You can travel with your family or meet with a business partner at any time. You will be able to quickly leave the country in case of political upheaval.
But these are not all the advantages of Caribbean citizenship. You will get access to the services of European banks and will be able to keep savings. It will be easier for you to make currency settlements with partners. It is difficult for a foreigner to become a client of a European bank: the check takes a long time, and it is required to answer a lot of additional requests.
If you are developing an international business, you can register your company in Saint Kitts and Nevis. It is easier for a company with a Caribbean registration to establish contacts, organize deliveries and carry out foreign exchange settlements abroad.
Read about all the possibilities in the Saint Kitts and Nevis citizenship guide.
Frequently asked questions
Benefits of St Kitts and Nevis citizenship include but not limited to:
- Visa-free travel to more than 150 countries, including the Schengen area, the UK, Singapore and Hong Kong.
- Access to services of international banks, e.g. European financial institutions.
- Tax optimization: there are no taxes on gifts, inheritance, capital gains and dividends in St Kitts and Nevis. Local companies don’t pay taxes on dividends, interest and royalties.
Applicants for St Kitts and Nevis citizenship by investment are offered with two options. They can make a contribution to a state fund or purchase an approved real estate. The minimum amount of contribution is $150,000. A share in an approved property costs from $200,000. Compare the terms of the two investment options
Yes, they can. The St Kitts and Nevis CBI program allows participation of the investor’s spouse, children, parents, grandparents and siblings. But family members are to meet certain requirements to qualify for the program, e.g. by age and financial dependence.
The St Kitts and Nevis passport allows its holder to visit more than 150 countries without visas. For example, St Kitts and Nevis citizens can freely spend 90 days out of 180 in the Schengen area. The visa-free stay in the UK can last for 180 day a year. The St Kitts and Nevis passport is used when registering for a flight and crossing borders. Learn more how to travel with a second passport