Recently; Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Gaston Browne, asked neighbouring Dominica to handover India’s fugitive businessman Mehul Choksi to India directly who was living in Antigua and Barbuda since 2018 after taking citizenship in 2017 under the ‘Citizenship by Investment Programme’.
About Citizenship by Investment Programme
- It is also known as Economic Citizenship.
- It is a scheme by which a person becomes a naturalised citizen of another country by investing in that country.
- It is a program allowing individuals to get residence or citizenship of a country in return of making qualifying investments. These programs offer-
- Citizenship by investment in which the person gets “golden passport” or “cash-for-passports”
- Residence by investment in which person gets a “golden visa” or
- Hybrid with immediate residence followed by accelerated citizenship.
- Applicants of Program must fulfil multiple qualification criteria. Investment by them can be done in various forms including contribution to government funds, purchase of qualifying real estate, investment in qualifying business or creation of specific number of jobs.
Where did it begin?
- The concept of gaining citizenships without residing in a country began in St. Kitts and Nevis. A year after the island nation gained its freedom from the United Kingdom, in 1984, St. Kitts and Nevis began its Citizenship By Investment programme.
Which countries run this programme?
- As of now, five countries in Caribbean – Antigua & Barbuda, Grenada, Dominica, Saint Kitts and Nevis and Saint Lucia); Egypt; Cambodia, Malta; Jordan, Montenegro, Vanuatu and North Macedonia are running the citizenship by investment programme.
International Relations Current Affairs : Click Here