Our company often assists affluent entrepreneurs who are actively developing their business. Often, further growth requires ease of mobility and freedom to choose jurisdiction. In these cases, our job is to provide our client with a solution capable of tackling these needs. To better understand how we can help in these situations, let us look at the Case of Alexander and his application for the citizenship of Malta.
- Alexander, entrepreneur, 45, head of one of the largest Russian production holdings with a network of international partnerships
- Anna, 42, actively works with charities
- Ekaterina, their daughter, studies in London
Alexander’s business has reached the growth stage where active collaboration with a network of international partners is essential. But his business, like countless other, is negatively affected by the sanctions against Russia. As a result, many potential partners walk away from the table, fearing the costs and complications of transferring funds to Russia. And overseas banks won’t open accounts for Alexander, as a Russian national.
Anna too began to experience issues in her charity work. She is especially engaged in the support of gifted children, with funds coming from all over the world. But lately, for the same political reasons, many overseas sponsors hesitate to support her charity events.
But the worst was yet to come. Ekaterina, their daughter, began receiving threats because of her father’s business. The family hired a bodyguard, but this was no long-term solution for the safety of their only child. Alexander needed a new way of ensuring his family’s safety and prosperity.
Goals and Objectives
Each of the family members had their specific goals and objectives that had to be addressed in the best way possible:
- Alexander wanted to give room for his business to grow, to expand to new locations, including those where Russians are typically treated with suspicion: USA, UK, Hong Kong
- Anna wanted to continue fostering her charity projects, and be free to attract business partners from every part of the world and every background
- Ekaterina required safety and an ability to study for a degree in fashion and design in Italy
Looking for Soluitions
After a consultation with Alexander, we proposed a series of solutions that suited his family’s situation and wishes:
- UK citizenship. The entire family would be naturalised in Britain after 6 years, and in the meantime receive UK fixed-term residence permits. This programme requires an investment of at least GBP 2 mln. in securities of UK companies
- Citizenship of Malta. The required investment here is lower: EUR 650,000 donation to a State fund, EUR 150,000 in Maltese securities, and purchase or rent real estate for EUR 350,000 or 16,000 per year (the latter two can be sold later). The processing time until full naturalisation is 14 to 16 months, and in the meantime the entire family receives a fixed-term residence permit for Malta.
In our analysis and proposal, we remembered that Alexander requires unhindered access to the international financial sector and business circles. To gain a good standing right away, he would benefit from the nationality of a prominent and financially prestigious State. Besides, it is a known fact that Common Law (used in the UK and the Commonwealth States) is especially protective towards businesses and their financial interests. Therefore, Alexander would also benefit from gaining a second citizenship of a country adhering to this legal system.
As for Anna, she was busy preparing a large musical event featuring talented children from over 120 countries around the world. An experienced organiser, she secured the support of prominent sponsors, but encountered a vexing problem at the contracting stage. The sponsors would not transfer the funds to Russian bank accounts. They were more than happy to use any EU banks. Anna, however, could not open a European bank account, as she did have a source of income of her own.
The Final Choice
The family opted for the Maltese citizenship programme. The British programme was less attractive, because it would require the family to reside in the UK at least 183 days each year. Whereas Alexander valued his freedom of mobility. Compared to the UK programme and its six years of waiting time, Malta’s two-year process was more preferable for everyone. And last but not least, the Maltese programme offered a doubtlessly more attractive value for the lower cost of investment.
Alexander’s busy schedule did not let him come in person, so we met with his wife Anna and Alexander’s personal assistant. They announced the family’s decision to request the Maltese citizenship, and our work began.
The application procedure ran with the help of Alexander’s three aides:
- a lawyer, responsible for the preparation and signing of our cooperation agreement
- personal legal assistant, working on gathering the family’s documents for the application
- personal secretary, in charge of coordinating our work with Alexander’s schedule
We were constantly in touch with this team, through multiple channels: emails, telephone, WhatsApp, Skype. Our experts are used to assisting clients across all media and means of communication, so the work went smoothly.
The Application Process
With this well-coordinated team, consisting of Alexander’s aides and our specialists, the work was divided and went fast. In just a week after signing the cooperation agreement, all the necessary documents were ready. Alexander promptly flew to Malta and received his family’s temporary residence permits. And we launched the naturalisation procedure, working so as to interfere with our Client’s busy schedule as little as possible.
Our specialists travelled to Malta to open bank accounts in Valletta, thus resolving a plethora of issues for the Clients. Alexander now had routes for direct transactions with his partners, and his wife could continue to raise funds for her upcoming event.
The process went fast and smoothly. Before approval, Maltese authorities perform due diligence of all applicants over the age of 18. Since Alexander and Anna are engaged in legal, transparent work the process went without a glitch and in four short months their applications were approved! 13 months more, and all three family members became naturalised Maltese citizens, and their problems – a thing of the past.
- Alexander’s business got new scope for growth and partnerships
- Anna succeeded in her charity event and sponsored many young talents
- Ekaterina saw new career possibilities, and enrolled at an Arts Academy on Malta
- The family bought a beautiful property on Malta, not far from the island’s former capital of Mdina, to enjoy its atmosphere of antique culture
This Case is yet another example of how well-coordinated work yields fast and excellent results that change the lives of clients and opening up new horizons for their potential.