Vanuatu citizenship for a Ukranian family
We were really got tired of bureaucracy. Applying all the documents for a British visa several times a year was exhausting. Vanuatu passport saves my family dozens of precious hours! From now on, we don’t need a visa to visit the United Kingdom.
Alexsey is an Ukranian entrepreneur, owner of a business for the production and supply of fabrics. His wife Olga is a housewife. The couple live in Odesa with their two children.
The son Igor is a full-time student of the Faculty of Economics at the Odesa State Economic University. The daughter Anna is 15 years old, she is currently a schoolgirl. The girl took her first steps in the modeling business, shooting for advertisements in magazines.
Alexsey expects to transfer the business to his son Igor in the future, so he influences the young man to work in the company and takes him on business trips. They also often travel with the whole family.
Our clients: an Ukranian family of four
Alexsey, 55 years old — an owner of the family business for the production and supply of fabrics
Olga, 50 years old — Alexsey’s wife
Igor, 21 years old — a student of an Ukranian university
Anna, 15 years old — in primary education
Alexsey’s company supplies fabrics to countries in the EU. In 2019, the businessman opened a production branch in the United Kingdom with a direct sales department. Since then, Alexsey has been in the country at least once every 1‑2 months to meet with business partners.
On such trips, the businessman is accompanied by his son Igor. It is important for a young man to participate in the affairs of the company as the future successor of the family business. Sometimes Olga and Anna join them to relax and see the sights of the United Kingdom.
Anna dreams of becoming an international model. She sent out portfolios to agencies in different countries. The girl was noticed by a British agency. Anna passed casting and signed a contract with the agency in January 2020. She planned to come to the United Kingdom regularly for filming.
All members of Alexsey’s family had to apply for visas to travel to the United Kingdom. To do this, they need to travel from Odesa to Kyiv every time: first to apply, and then to pick up their passports with a visa. At the same time, Alexsey needs to collect documents on income and receive invitations from British partners to confirm the purpose of the trip.
The businessman got tired of bureaucracy and thought about how to obtain citizenship or a residence permit of another country. He wanted to enter the territory of the United Kingdom without a visa.
In May 2020 Alexsey consulted Immigrant Invest. At this time, the borders were closed due to the COVID‑19 pandemic, so it was important to find a solution that would allow all procedures to be completed remotely.
We helped the investor choose an investment program. In two months, the family issued second passports, which allowed them to visit the United Kingdom without a visa.
Search for solution: what would be the easiest country to get citizenship
Alexsey could not come to the Immigrant Invest office due to closed borders, so our lawyers contacted him and discussed the situation online.
We analyzed the situation, conducted a preliminary Due Diligence check. As a result, we offered Alexsey programs for five countries. With their passports, you can enter the United Kingdom without a visa and stay on the territory of the state for up to 180 days within a year.
The list includes four Caribbean countries and Vanuatu, a country in Oceania. According to the programs of the Caribbean countries, an investor can make a non-refundable contribution to the state fund, invest in real estate or business. The Vanuatu program only offers a non-refundable option.
Alexsey preferred the option with a contribution to the state fund as it is the most simple and understandable option.
When the type of investment has been chosen, it remains to compare the terms and costs of the program when choosing the option with a subsidy. Immigrant Invest calculated the cost of family participation for each of the five programs. The total amount included investment, Due Diligence cost, duties and bank commissions.
Expenses for a family of four people: spouse, one child of 21 years old and a 15 year old
Antigua and Barbuda
4 to 6 months
Saint Kitts and Nevis
4 to 6 months
1.5 to 2 months
4 to 6 months
3 to 4 months
The investor took three days to think. He wanted to discuss options with his family before making his final choice.
Choosing an investment program
Alexsey chose the Vanuatu citizenship by investment program for two reasons.
Registration speed: a fast passport. Participation in the Vanuatu program takes one to two months which is fast citizenship as it takes three to six months to get a Caribbean passport.
The investor believed that he would need to go to the UK as soon as the borders of the states were opened. Amid the pandemic, Alexsey could not determine the exact dates of the trip, but he wanted to receive a travel document as soon as possible.
The CBI units of St. Kitts and Nevis and Dominica offer a two month expedited processing service. The cost of such a service is $66,500 and $6,000, respectively.
Alexsey reasoned that, all other things being equal, he was not ready to pay extra for speeding up procedures. Under the Vanuatu program, he will obtain citizenship in the same period without additional payments.
Less bureaucracy in registration: an easy citizenship. The Vanuatu program requires fewer documents to collect than the Caribbean programs and registration, as in the case of the Caribbean programs, is carried out remotely. This is especially important while countries are in quarantine.
We signed an agreement with an investor and began to prepare documents for the family’s participation in the program.
Vanuatu citizenship by investment program
Who can participate
Investor and his spouse
Children under 25 years old
Parents over 50 years old
Preliminary Due Diligence.
Preparation and submission of documents to the Vanuatu Finance Department (FIU).
FIU preliminary check.
Submission of documents for Due Diligence at the Vanuatu CBI unit and payment of a 25% investment fee.
Investor application approval.
Payment of the remaining 75% of the investment fee.
Taking the oath and obtaining a certificate of naturalization and a passport.
From $130,000 – a non-refundable contribution to the National Development Fund
$5,000 – Due Diligence fee
Personal presence in the country of the program
FIU check: submitting an application and Vanuatu passport requirements
First of all, we prepared for a preliminary check with the Finance Department of Vanuatu (FIU).
Under the terms of the program, the investor must provide a minimum package of documents, which includes:
copies of a valid passport;
certificate of no criminal record;
CV, government questionnaires and forms;
The investor never had any problems with the law, so he easily provided a police clearance certificate. Our lawyers completed government questionnaires and forms for Alexsey’s family.
The minimum amount on an investor’s account under the terms of the program is $250,000. The investor provided us with a bank statement, which confirmed that he had funds for settlements under the program.
All the documents were translated, notarized and apostilled. It took just a week to collect a complete package of documents for participation in the Vanuatu citizenship program.
The investor also needed to attach a receipt of payment to the documents: the cost of the FIU check is $5,000 for the whole family. As soon as Alexsey made the payment, we sent the package of documents to the FIU.
The financial department verified the investor in 3 days. The investor received approval from the FIU and could apply to the program department.
Fulfillment of the investment program conditions
Before submitting the application, the investor needs to make a 25% payment of the investment amount to an account in the Reserve Bank of Vanuatu. The bank checked and successfully credited the money in two days. After that, we immediately submitted an investor’s application remotely for consideration to the program department.
In mid-June 2020, a positive response came back from the department: the investor was approved. Alexsey transferred the remaining 75% of the contribution. After that, the investor had to take an oath and then receive ready-made naturalization certificates and second passports.
For 2 weeks
Oath and obtaining second passports
Under the terms of the program, investors personally take an oath. This can be done either on the island itself or in any other country that is convenient for the investor. In Vanuatu, the investor takes the oath in the presence of the Commissioner and the Migration Officer.
In a pandemic, the standard oath procedure proved impossible: closed borders and quarantine did not allow for organizing a personal meeting. The Vanuatu program department offered investors an alternative; to take the oath in the format of a video conference. The cost of the service was $5,000.
We arranged an online meeting with the Commissioner and the Migration Officer from Vanuatu and Alexsey’s family. On June 26th, 2020, the family took the oath of allegiance as new citizens of the country.
We sent the naturalization certificates and passports of Alexsey’s family to the investor at the address in Ukraine provided by him.
Vanuatu passport benefits for the new citizens
The Vanuatu citizenship by Investment Program is the fastest way to get a long-term travel document for visa-free travel around the world.
When Alexsey received the documents, he shared his travel plans with us with a Vanuatu passport this time. The investor expects to fly to the UK as soon as the borders open and air traffic between the countries reverts back to normal. The family is going to visit London. There, Alexsey plans to meet with business partners to arrange supply of new fabrics to the city’s stores.
Alexsey also plans to visit his brother, who lives in Singapore. As a citizen of Vanuatu, he will be able to do it visa-free.
On the way back from Australia, the investor wants to visit Vanuatu. There, he expects to relax with the whole family, try diving and go hiking to the volcanoes.
Immigrant Invest is a licensed agent for government programs in the European Union and the Caribbean.
This case was provided by our expert
Investment programs expert
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