Saint Lucia’s immigrant investor programme draws in wealthy Chinese


Castries, Feb. 07, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- A fast-rising number of Chinese citizens are investing in Saint Lucia in exchange for second citizenship, thanks to the country’s favourable business and family-friendly policies. 

For as little as US$100 000.00, Chinese investors rattled by China’s uncertain economy, are making the smart move by investing in Saint Lucia. 

Since 2016, Saint Lucia’s Citizenship by Investment Programme has proved a popular choice for those looking for growth and stability. As one of the strongest economies in the Caribbean, Saint Lucia is lauded for its favourable environment for business and entrepreneurs, allowing them to increase their profits through the progressive tax structure and wide range of offshore banking services. 

Saint Lucia is one of the fastest-growing economies in the Caribbean region and offers a wide range of holistic investment opportunities for individuals seeking to diversify their portfolios. Partnered with a high standard of living in a safe country with access to modern healthcare and infrastructure, investors are praising the island nation.  

Past Chinese Communist party’s national congresses were driven by ‘economic growth’ but the buzzword of the 20th Congress held in October 2022 was “struggle.” This has left the Chinese middle class worried about their wealth, careers and families

The president’s ‘common prosperity’ goal, which aims to reduce China’s wealth gap is now the nation’s main development objective.  

China’s economy is slowing and facing a number of headwinds, from uncertainty caused by the coronavirus pandemic to geopolitical tensions. Coupled with the Government’s heavy-handed push to reduce income equality – there’s been a lot of anxiety amongst the middle class. 

About 400 million Chinese, or roughly 30 per cent of the population are regarded as middle class. 

Saint Lucia is an increasingly alluring choice in part because of its affordability, quick processing times and easy investment options within the Programme. 

The country took third place in the annual CBI Index, a comprehensive ranking system that evaluates operational citizenship by investment programmes. Saint Lucia was recognised for its affordable minimum investment outlay, absence of any mandatory travel or residence requirements and ease of application processing. 

Mc Claude Emmanuel, CEO of Saint Lucia’s CIP Unit, has noted that the CBI Index is a great opportunity for potential investors to understand the advantage of investing in Saint Lucia’s Citizenship by Investment Programme. 

Other factors such as great education and healthcare facilities and the country’s friendly reputation have made the Caribbean nation a coveted choice for investors. 

Nearly three years of harsh coronavirus curbs — only relaxed last December — are another factor influencing wealthy Chinese to seek dual citizenship. 

Applicants have four routes available to gain second citizenship in Saint Lucia – the most popular being through donation to the National Economic Fund, Real Estate investment or the purchase of Government Bonds. 

Investing in Saint Lucia’s National Economic Fund is a straightforward way to apply for citizenship while enhancing the infrastructure and utilities of the island nation. Once an application has been approved, investors need to make the minimum qualifying investment of US$100 000. 

Saint Lucia has huge appeal for visitors and tourists and is proud of its range of real estate options. The Citizenship by Investment Programme is an option for investors wishing to make an investment into an approved real estate project under the following categories:  

  • high-end branded hotels and resorts  
  • high-end boutique properties  

The investor will own a title deed to the property for a minimum investment of US$200 000and this property must be owned and maintained for a minimum of five years after citizenship has been granted. 

The Government Bonds option requires a minimum investment of US$300 000and once citizenship has been granted, investments in government bonds must be held in the applicant’s name for a fixed period of time. The bonds do not attract a rate of interest for the duration of this period. From 1 January 2023, the Government introduced the new non-interest-bearing National Action Bond (NAB)

Family members that can be included in the application include the applicant's: 

  • Spouse 
  • Children of the main applicant or spouse aged 21 or below 
  • Children of the main applicant or spouse between aged 22-29 that are fully supported by the main applicant 
  • Children of the main applicant or spouse of any age that are physically or mentally challenged, and fully supported by the main applicant 
  • Parents of the main applicant or spouse aged 55 or above and fully supported by the main applicant 
  • Parents of any age if physically or mentally challenged and fully supported by the main applicant 
  • Siblings of the main applicant aged under 18, unmarried, and in receipt of consent from their parent or guardian to make an application 

From acknowledgment of the submission of the application by the CIP Unit to approval in principle, applicants are generally expected to wait three months. 

The Saint Lucia Citizenship by Investment Programme also undertakes robust due diligence during the application process and works closely with its local and regional intelligence partners. This protects the integrity of the Programme and its value to applicants’ investments. The CIP Unit reviews every application in the same way, without preference or prejudice. Every applicant can expect to receive the same experience and attention to detail. 


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