Foreign investors interested in setting businesses in other countries than their own have various choices nowadays. One of the best ways is by buying a golden visa in countries that have enabled such programs. Buying a golden visa comes with several benefits, among which the possibility of owning a business while moving permanently to that respective country. Ireland is one of the countries which offers some of the most advantageous conditions for those looking to obtain citizenship by investment.
Below, our specialists explain the conditions related to obtaining citizenship by investment in Ireland. If you are interested in other citizenship by investment countries that offer the chance of buying a golden visa, you can rely on us for information and assistance in moving there.
Programs for foreigners interested in Irish citizenship by investment
Ireland is one of the most advanced countries in the world when it comes to programs destined for foreigners who want to acquire an Irish passport by investment. Even if at first, such programs grant temporary or permanent residency, they are some of the most attractive in the world.
The program under which foreigners from non-EU and non-EEA countries can obtain citizenship by investment in Ireland is the Immigrant Investor Program and Start-Up Entrepreneur Program.
If you want to enter a golden visa program in another European country, our specialists can help you.
Investment requirements for Irish citizenship
Compared to the United Kingdom, which also offers citizenship by investment program, Ireland allows foreigners to choose the category of investments they want to put their money in. These are:
- foreigners can invest at least 1 million euros in the so-called immigrant investor bonds issued by the government;
- foreign citizens can also invest at least 1 million euros in an Irish-based company which is at least 3 years old;
- foreign applicants can also invest at least 1 million euros in one of the investment funds acknowledged by the government;
- investments in Real Estate Investment Funds (REITs) are also possible, as long as the minimum amount is 2 million euros (the REIT must be listed on the Stock Exchange);
- a mixed investment is possible – this should imply the purchase of real estate property worth at least 450,000 euros and the purchase of government bonds with a value of 500,000 euros.
The last option of acquiring golden passports in Ireland is by making a donation of at least 500,000 euros for charitable purposes. The donation cannot be recovered.
Our specialists in the golden visa program can offer more information on the qualification requirements when applying for citizenship by investment in Ireland in 2021.
Business investment for citizenship in Ireland
One of the main ways of obtaining citizenship by investment in Ireland under the Immigrant Investor Program is by starting a business here. The minimum amount of money to be injected into the company is 1 million euros which can be invested in one or several companies for a minimum period of 3 years. With respect to the companies that can be set up, these can be start-ups, but investments in existing enterprises are also allowed.
The only requirements for the company are to have its headquarters in Ireland and to enable the creation or maintenance of jobs. Another requirement is for the investment to be made by the foreign citizen seeking to obtain an Irish passport.
The following requirements must be made when seeking golden paspports in Ireland through a business that already exists:
- the latest audited accounts must be enclosed with the application;
- a comprehensive business plan which specifies the areas targeted for the investments;
- evidence supporting the minimum amount to be investment, but also of the net worth of the applicant (the latter is 2 million euros);
- information about the economic undertakings of the investor in the past 12 months;
- evidence on the source of funding and the possibility of transferring them;
- a clean criminal record and health insurance.
It is worth noting that under the Immigrant Investor Program, the relocation of an existing business to Ireland is also possible in 2021. In other words, if the applicant already has a business, he or she can relocate it to Ireland for the purpose of this program.
The Irish government also provides for education expenses discounts for the investor and family members. Through this incentive, the applicant can obtain a maximum of 50,000 euros discount on the investment if they enroll with an accredited educational institution in Ireland.
The Irish Golden Visa Scheme is one of the most appealing for non-EU investors, however, if you wish to move to other golden visa countries.
Other options for obtaining Irish citizenship through investment in 2021
Qualified investors or those willing to make investments in other ways in order to gain permanent residency and then citizenship in Ireland have the option of committing at least 1 million euros into a qualifying investment fund. The minimum period for the investment to be maintained in 3 years.
In order for the investment to be accepted, the fund must have been approved for the Immigrant Investor Scheme. Also, the fund must be private equity or venture capital fund targeting small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The minimum target of the fund must be 20 million euros. The fund and its managers must have been approved by the Central Bank of Ireland.
The real estate investment trust (REIT) is the other option for those who want to apply for citizenship by investment in Ireland. The REIT is a company listed on the Stock Exchange and it is used to hold properties for rent with the purpose of reducing investor risks and avoiding double taxation.
In order to qualify for the Investor Visa under this option, the applicant must invest at least 2 million euros in one or more REITs for at least 3 years. The REITs must be listed on the Stock Exchange.
There is also the option of endowment which implies making a minimum donation of 500,000 euros to a philanthropic project which can be in the art, sports, health, culture, or education sector.
Our golden visa consultants can present all the options available for citizenship by investment in Irelandin 2021 so that you can choose the right option.
Conditions for obtaining citizenship by investment in Ireland
Before accepting the investment, the Irish government will analyze the candidate application based on the following criteria:
- the source of the money must be a legitimate one (the candidate will be required proof of that);
- the investment to be made suits the immediate requirements of the Irish economy;
- one of the main purposes of the investment should be that of creating new jobs for Irish citizens;
- the investment qualifies for public interest and the investor has a good standing.
It is important to know that all these conditions must be fulfilled when applying for citizenship by investment in Ireland. Considering some of these requirements imply vetting, it is best to request the services offered by our immigration specialists who can explain how to prepare for the verifications of the Irish government.
We can also help relocate to golden visa countries like Malta, Italy and Cyprus.
Documents required for Irish citizenship by investment
Among the documents to file in order to obtain a golden visa in Ireland are the valid passport, proof of economic sustainability and investment, and evidence of the net worth. Depending on the type of investment to make, the applicant will be required to file various documents.
In respect to the processing time of the application, Ireland is one of the fastest countries to issue residence permits for foreign investors. The residence permit is issued for 2 years initially and then it is renewed for 3 more years based on proof that the investment is maintained. After the first 5 years, a renewal of the residence permit is allowed and after 8 years, the applicant can request Irish citizenship by naturalization.
In order to obtain citizenship, the applicant will need to pass an interview with the Irish immigration authorities.
Why apply for citizenship by investment in Ireland in 2021?
Ireland is one of the most appealing and prolific economies of the European Union. Many foreign investors choose to do business here because of the low taxes they are subject to, but also by the fact that Ireland has no intention of exiting the European Union.
Compared to other citizenship by investment countries, such as Portugal, Ireland offers more options with respect to the categories of investment.
Another important aspect of choosing Ireland for citizenship by investment under the Immigrant Investor and Start-Up Entrepreneur Program is that the foreign citizen can apply for a loan for the investment. This is actually one of the unique features of this program in Ireland.
After 5 years of residency in Ireland, the applicant can obtain Irish citizenship without any language tests, as other countries require.
After Brexit, the Republic of Ireland remains an appealing destination for obtaining citizenship by investment in 2021. Foreign applicants can benefit from the same program, as nothing has changed after the formal exit of the UK from the EU.
However, if you have any questions about the 2021 Irish citizenship by investment scheme, we are at your service with updated information.
Feel free to contact us for more information on how to obtain citizenship by investment in Ireland, one of the best European countries to immigrate to. We can also help you apply for citizenship by investment in any other country you are interested in and which offer the possibility of buying a golden visa.