In 2013, parliamentarians of Antigua and Barbuda approved the Citizenship by Investment Act, and regulations regarding the Act were put into place in 2014. It now is possible for individuals who are at least 18 years of age and who significantly contribute to the economy of these islands to gain citizenship for themselves and their family members. Interested parties must pass stringent background checks, fulfill application requirements, and complete one of three options.
These investment options are as follows:
Make a nonrefundable contribution of at least $100,000 for a family of four, or $ 125,000 for a family of 4 and plus to the National Development Fund. This nonprofit fund provides monies for projects that are sponsored or approved by the government, including public-private partnerships and some charitable works.
Put a minimum of $400,000 into a government-approved real estate project, and do not sell any part of that investment for at least five years unless you purchase another qualifying property to replace what you sell. Condominiums, individual homes and fractional ownership of larger properties in approved areas all are possibilities.
Choose an approved business in which to invest at least $1,500,000. Alternatively, invest in an approved business jointly, with each partner supplying a minimum of $400,000. The total amount invested must come to at least $5,000,000.
Notes Regarding Investment Options
National Development Fund
If you choose to invest by contributing to the National Development Fund, you can include your family on your application without needing to make an additional contribution. Individual fees will be required, however, for each family member. You must apply through an authorized agent who is licensed by the Citizenship by Investment Unit, or “CIU.” Once your application is approved, you must pay the contribution within 30 days. Your agent will deposit the funds in the CIU escrow account.
Once all fees have been paid and the funds are in the escrow account, a certificate of registration will be issued for you and your family members and submitted to the passport office, along with the corresponding passport applications and other required documents. Once the agent receives passports for you and your family members, the passports and citizenship certificates will be forwarded to you. On your initial visit to the islands after receiving the passports, you will need to take the oath of allegiance in order for all requirements for citizenship to be complete.
Procedures in making an investment in real estate are similar to those listed above. Here are a few additional details:
If two or more people want to apply for citizenship by making a joint investment in real estate, they each must contribute at least $400,000.
Before applying for citizenship, a binding Sales and Purchase Agreement must be executed, and the Registrar of Companies must certify evidence of ownership.
Title will be registered in the investor’s name(s) once fees are received by the CIU and approval of the application(s) for citizenship are issued.
If you choose this option, you will want to contact the Antigua and Barbuda Investment Authority, or “ABIA,” regarding your proposal. You must have the ABIA’s approval before the CIU will consider your application for citizenship.
In addition to investment requirements, each applicant pays a government processing fee, a due diligence fee, and a passport fee. Click here to view the complete fee schedule.
Each family member is subject to the government fee. Ten percent of the fee must be paid when the application for citizenship by investment is submitted by the applicant’s authorized agent. The balance becomes due once the agent receives the government’s letter of approval.
Every family member over the age of 11 is assessed a due diligence fee, which pays for the attention and care required to ascertain that applicants who are granted citizenship are worthy of such an honor. Due diligence fees must be paid when the appointed agent submits the application, and these fees are nonrefundable.
There is one set passport fee, paid by each person who is included on the application for citizenship.