Citizenship by investment
St Lucia Citizenship
Saint Lucia enacted provisions in citizenship law in 2015, granting economic citizenship to foreign investors who invest in real estate, business investment in the country. “Citizenship by investment” means the acquisition of citizenship in Saint Lucia by means of qualifying investment. Saint Lucia’s Citizenship by Investment Program was launched in December 2015 following Act No. 14 of 2015,
Citizenship by investment in St Lucia
- Fast processing within 2 months
- Lifetime citizenship for family and children
- Option for real estate investment, business and bonds
- Unspoiled exotic beaches, a great country for holidays.
- Visa free travel to over 125 countries including United Kingdom, EU Schengen states, Switzerland, Germany etc.
- Lifetime citizenship for family and children
- Confidential application process with no exchange of information with other Governments
- No residency requirements. No interviews. No language tests.
- No requirement to personally visit St Lucia.
- Very fast citizenship approval within 60 days
- Citizenship through property investment in St Lucia real estate
- No interviews, No language tests, No military service, No business experience needed for citizenship
- Grenada passport valid for 5 years before expiry.
- No income, wealth or inheritance taxes.
Qualifying Citizenship Investments
The Citizenship by Investment Program of St Lucia was launched in December 2015 following the passage of Act No. 14 of 2015, the Citizenship by Investment Act on 24th August 2015 enabling foreign investors and families acquire citizenship of Saint Lucia through these investment routes.
The following investments qualify for immediate passport, under the St Lucia citizenship program:
- Non refundable donation to National Economic Fund ($100,000)
- Real estate Investment ($300,000 in hotels, resorts, boutiques)
- Government bonds ($250,000) with 5 year holding period
- Direct business investment ($1,000,000) on enterprise projects.
St Lucia passport is ranked 37th best passport in the world, having visa free travel access to 125 countries.
The following four types of investments qualify for citizenship in St Lucia under the citizenship-by-investment programme (CIP) rules.
1. SAINT LUCIA NATIONAL ECONOMIC FUND
Saint Lucia National Economic Fund is a special fund established under Section 33 of the Citizenship by Investment Act for the sole purpose of receiving qualifying investments of cash for funding government sponsored projects.
Investors are required to pay $100,000 one-time for the fund against lifetime citizenship. Donation to the fund is the cheapest, fastest and easiest investment for citizenship in Saint Lucia.
- Applicant applying alone: US$100,000
- Applicant applying with spouse: US$140,000
- Applicant applying with spouse and up to two (2) other qualifying dependants: US$150,000
- Each additional qualifying dependant, of any age: US$25,000
Non-refundable processing fees
Due diligence fees
2. REAL ESTATE PROJECTS
Applicants are require to buy a property or piece of real estate for atleast US$ 300,000 in one of the approved real estate projects in St Lucia such as branded hotels, resorts, boutique properties. The Cabinet of Ministers will consider real estate projects to be included on the approved list for the Citizenship by Investment Programme. Only approved properties by Government will qualify for CIP programme.
Non-refundable administration fees under real estate investment:
Due diligence fees
3. BUSINESS ENTERPRISE PROJECTS
The Cabinet of Ministers will consider enterprise projects to be included on the approved list for the Citizenship by Investment Programme. Approved enterprise projects fall into seven (7) broad categories:
- Specialty Restaurants
- Cruise ports and marinas
- Agro-processing plants
- Pharmaceutical products
- Ports, bridges, roads and highways
- Research institutions and facilities
- Offshore universities
Option 1 – A sole applicant.
- A minimum investment of US$3,500,000
Option 2 – More than one applicant (joint venture).
- A minimum investment of US$ 6,000,000 with each applicant contributing no less than US$1,000,000
Due diligence fees
Non-refundable administration fees under Enterprise investment:
Each qualifying dependant: US $25,000 (under 18 years of age)
4. GOVERNMENT BONDS
Citizenship by investment in St Lucia is also possible through buying US$ 250,000 non-interest bearing Covid-19 Government bonds, locked in for 5 years. Limited Time Offer until Dec 30, 2020
- Applicant applying alone: US$250,000 (5 years
- Applicant applying with spouse: US$250,000 (6 years)
- Applicant applying with spouse and up to two (2) other qualifying dependants: US$250,000 (7 years)
- Each additional qualifying dependant: US$15,000
Due diligence fees
Government of Saint Lucia’s Bonds are issued under the National Savings and Development Bonds Act Ch.15.25 of 2005 of the Revised Laws of Saint Lucia. Once an application for citizenship has been approved, the applicant must make their purchase of the non-interest bearing Government bonds through the Debt and Investment Unit in the Ministry of Finance.
The applicant would be provided with a Bond Certificate within 21 calendar days. A certified copy of the Bond Certificate must be submitted to the Unit as proof of having made the qualifying investment. Upon receipt of the Bond Certificate, the Unit shall process the issuance of a Citizenship Certificate.
Citizenship application fees
The following fees have been prescribed under the Citizenship by Investment Regulations of 2015.
|Processing fees (non-refundable)
Principal applicant: US$ 2000
Each qualifying dependant:US$ 1000
|Administration fees (non-refundable)
(for an approved real estate or enterprise project investment)
Principal applicant:US$ 50,000
Each qualifying dependant:US$ 35,000
Each qualifying dependant under 18 years: US$ 25,000
|Due diligence fees (non refundable)
Principal applicant: US$ 7,500
Each qualifying dependant over 16 years: US$ 5,000
HOW TO APPLY FOR CITIZENSHIP?
We work with several authorized agents and real estate developers in Saint Lucia. All applicants have to apply for citizenship in St Lucia through authorized agent or service provider, which is recommended by the Government.
- Sign a retainer agreement with the agent and pay a initial deposit (5%-10%). The agent will do a initial compulsory due diligence check and will request for documents before starting the process.
- The authorized agent will sign client-professional agreement and ensuring the confidentiality of the documents and information and will give a green signal to start the application process.
- Pay the agent service fee, Government due diligence, registration fee (real estate only) . The agent will handle everything between Government and the Client. At this point on, the agent will check and verify all documents and will launch an application with St Lucia Citizenship Unit on behalf of the client. Only licensed agents can apply on behalf of the client.
- St Lucia citizenship unit will take 60 days to approve the application. Once the application is approved, they will issue “Letter of Approval” to the agent who will instruct you to make the remaining investment amount. You are not required to pay the full amount before receiving approval letter.
- Once the letter of approval is received, you are required to make the remaining full investment within 21 days (bonds, real estate, business, in case of donation – payment must be made to government fund account)
- St Lucia citizenship unit verifies that the appropriate investment has been completed and the investor and family will be promptly issued a Certificate of Naturalization and you will receive a St Lucia passport within 7 days.
- Authorized agent will collect naturalization certificate and passport and will hand over to you.
VISA FREE COUNTRIES
All economic citizens of St Lucia automatically issued a passport under the Citizenship by Investment Act No 14 of 2015. St lucia passport offers visa free travel to 125 countries in the world. The passport issued under citizenship-by-investment programme is valid for 5 years.
|Andorra||Dominican Republic||Jersey||St. Eustatius|
|Antigua & Barbuda||El Salvador||Kiribati||St. Kitts & Nevis|
|Aruba||French Guiana||Malawi||St. Martin|
|Bahamas, The||Gambia, The||Malaysia||St. Vincent &the Grenadines|
|Botswana||Guatemala||Monsterrat||Trinidad & Tobago|
|British Virgin Islands||Guernsey||Nicaragua||Tunisia|
|Cayman Islands||Guyana||Panama||Turks & Caicos Islands|
|Cook Islands||Hong Kong||Saba||Vatican City|
|Costa Rica||Ireland||San Marino||Venezuela|
|Cuba||Isle of Man||Singapore||Wallis & Fortuna|
Visa Free Countries up to 90 days in 180-day period
Visa on Arrival Countries.
|Cape Verde||Mozambique||Solomon Islands||Timor-Leste|
E-Visa (must apply no less than 5 days before travel)
United Arab Emirates
CITIZENSHIP THROUGH PROPERTY INVESTMENT
All foreign investors and families qualify for St lucia citizenship under real estate investment scheme, which requires a minimum USD 300,000 purchase of approved property (full or limited share) in St Lucia in Hotels, Resorts, Luxury home in Saint Lucia. Property buyers have to bear additional fees such as property registration fee, citizenship processing fee, due diligence fee etc.
Step 1. Sign initial reservation form and pay initial deposit 10% of the real estate price to the developer.
Step 2: Initial application and required documents for citizenship through agent. You also have to pay due diligence fees ($7500). Investor will execute sale of purchase agreement.
Step 3: After 2-3 months, approval letter is given by Government and within 7 days you are required to pay the balance for real estate and government fees.
Step 4: The proof of ownership is handed over to Government and within 3-4 weeks you will be issued “citizenship certificate”.
Step 5: Using “certificate of citizenship” apply for St Lucia passport which takes about 1 week, which is usually handled by authorized agent.
CITIZENSHIP BY INVESTMENT FAQS
The following questions are commonly asked by clients who apply for citizenship in Saint Lucia under its new 2017 citizenship by investment programme (CIP)
HOW MUCH TIME IT TAKES FOR ST LUCIA PASSPORT?
2-3 months. You will be issued citizenship certificate and passport.
WHAT IS THE CHEAPEST AND FASTEST INVESTMENT OPTION?
Donation to economic fund US$ 100,000, plus $7500 due diligence fee plus $2000 administration fee.
WHAT IS THE REPUTATION OF SAINT LUCIA PASSPORT?
St Lucia passport is ranked No 37 best passport in world passport rankings with visa free travel to 125 countries in the world according a survey Henley visa restrictions index 2016. The visa free travel access includes United Kingdom, European schengen states such as Germany, France, Switzerland, Ireland etc. Economic Citizens of Saint Lucia (passport holders) still need visa to travel to Canada and United States.
WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS TO QUALIFY UNDER CIP PROGRAMME?
Citizenship by Investment Programme in Saint Lucia requires meet the following minimum criteria:
- Be at least 18 years of age;
- Satisfy a minimum qualifying investment in one of the following categories –
- The Saint Lucia National Economic Fund $100,000;
- An approved Real Estate development $300,000;
- An approved Enterprise project $1 million; or
- The purchase of Government bonds $500,000
- Provide details and evidence of the proposed qualifying investment;
- Pass a diligence background check along with their qualifying dependents over the age of 16;
- Provide full and frank disclosure on all matters pertaining to the application; and
- Pay the requisite non-refundable processing, due diligence and administrative fees upon application.
CAN I INCLUDE CHILDREN OVER 18 YEARS IN THE FAMILY APPLICATION?
Yes you can
IS THE CITIZENSHIP LIFETIME AND CAN IT BE PASSED ON TO FUTURE FAMILY GENERATIONS?
Yes citizenship is lifetime and it can be passed on to future generations.
WHAT IF CITIZENSHIP IS REFUSED?
You are only required to pay the full amount, only after receiving “Letter of Approval” from Government. You will have 60 days time to commit to the investment. If you are refused it could be of the following reasons.
- You have not passed background and due diligence checks done by the Government
- You have prior criminal convictions or visa denials.
- You have lied or provided false information in your application.
- Have been convicted of a criminal offence except a minor traffic offence.
- Have been denied any category of visa to a country to which Saint Lucia has visa free access and been unsuccessful in subsequently obtaining visa.
- Have been declared bankrupt by a court; and
- Have been declared, by a court or qualified health practitioner to be mentally incapacitated.
CAN I INCLUDE PARENTS ABOVE 65 YEARS IN THE CITIZENSHIP APPLICATION
Yes you can, but parents must be fully supported by main applicant.
WHAT DOCUMENTS ARE REQUIRED TO APPLY FOR ST LUCIA CITIZENSHIP?
- Birth Certificate (original and copy)
- Medical Health Certificate (less than 3 months old)
- Police certificate (less than 6 months old)
- Letter of recommendation from the head of the school/university for children between 12 and 18 years old
- Proof of payment of relevant fees.
- Affidavit of Source of Funds.
- Detailed Business Background Reports/Resume
- Two(2) professional references
- Letter of Employment/ Financial Statements
- Recommendation from applicant’s Bankers
- Two (2) Personal references
- Eight (8) passport size photos for each applicant
- Marriage Certificate/Dissolution of Marriage if required
- Notarized copies of University/College diplomas.
- If documents are not in english (both original and translated ones ) must be given.
WHAT ARE 2017 CHANGES MADE TO CITIZENSHIP BY INVESTMENT SAINT LUCIA?
Saint Lucia has announced several amendments to its citizenship by investment programme which are effective from January 1st, 2017.
Please see below the details of the approved changes:
- Removing the requirement for an applicant to provide a sworn affidavit to declare financial resources of at least US$3,000,000.00;
- Removing the limit of the number of applications which could be granted by the Board, previously set at a maximum of 500 applications;
- Providing the option for successful applicants to sign the oath of allegiance before an attorney-at-law, a Consular Officer of Saint Lucia, an Honorary Consul of Saint Lucia, a Notary Royal or a Notary Public;
- Adding a non-refundable administration fee of US$50,000.00 to the purchase of non-interest bearing Government Bonds;
- Changing the qualifying investments in the National Economic Fund. The new qualifying investments are as follows:
Applicant applying alone
Applicant applying with spouse
Applicant applying with spouse and up to two other qualifying dependants
Each additional qualifying dependant at any age
HOW DO I APPLY FOR CITIZENSHIP IN SAINT LUCIA?
Your Authorised Agent will be able to assist you to ensure that your application forms as per the legislation and guidelines issued by the Citizenship by Investment Board. We work with several authorized agents in St Lucia.
CAN I APPLY DIRECTLY TO THE CITIZENSHIP UNIT OF SAINT LUCIA WITHOUT APPROACHING AUTHORISED AGENTS?
Every applicant MUST use a licenced Authorised Agent to submit their application to the Citizenship by Investment Unit. The Unit will not process any application which has been submitted by anyone other than a licenced Authorised Agent.
WHAT LANGUAGE SHOULD MY SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS BE IN?
All supporting documents must be submitted in the original language. Where the original language of the supporting document is NOT English, then you MUST also submit an authenticated English translation of the original. Therefore in the cases where the original supporting document is not in English, you will have two submissions – one of the original document accompanied by the English translation. Where the original supporting document is in English, only the English document is required.
WHAT ARE THE APPLICATION PROCESSING STEPS FOLLOWED BY GOVERNMENT UNDER CIP PROGRAMME?
2. Compliance check completed;
3. Due diligence background check completed;
4. Unit recommendation sent to the Citizenship by Investment Board;
5. Board decision made;
6. In the event that the application is approved, qualifying investment made by applicant;
Certificate of Citizenship granted.
Note: Only a licenced Authorised Agent can act on your behalf and handle your citizenship application for you.
WHAT IF APPLICATION FOR CITIZENSHIP BY INVESTMENT IS DENIED?
You can appeal the denial of your application if you feel that there are good grounds to do so. Your Authorised Agent can advise you on how to make an appeal.
IS IT POSSIBLE TO GET CITIZENSHIP UNDER FAST TRACK OPTION UNDER THE INVESTMENT PROGRAMME?
There is no accelerated processing of an application. The maximum time frame is 3 months.
WHAT IS NATIONAL ECONOMIC FUND?
Saint Lucia National Economic Fund is a special fund established under Section 33 of the Citizenship by Investment Act No. 14 of 2015. The National Economic Fund is established for the sole purpose of receiving qualifying investments of donations under the Citizenship by Investment Programme. Funds collected via the National Economic Fund will be used for purposes which have been approved by Cabinet as part of the national development agenda.
WHAT ARE THE MAJOR CITIES IN ST LUCIA?
The capital city (Castries) is located in the northern section of the island and represents approximately 40% of the population. Other major population centers include Vieux-Fort and Gros-Islet.
|8||Anse la Raye||6,033|
WHAT IS THE MAIN ECONOMY OF ST LUCIA?
Tourism aggregates to 60% of GDP followed by agriculture.
Population: Approximately 183, 657
Area: 238 sq miles/616.4 sq km
Official Language: English
Local Language: French Creole
GDP Per Capita: 6,847.6 (2014)
Adult Literacy: 72.8% (2010 Census)
Currency: Eastern Caribbean Dollar (EC$)
Exchange Rate: US $1 = EC $2.70
Time Zone: EST +1, GMT -4
HOW IS THE HEALTH CARE IN ST LUCIA?
St Lucia has thirty-three (33) Health Centers, three (3) public hospitals, one (1) private hospital, and one (1) psychiatric hospital.
WHAT ARE THE PLACES WORTH VISITING IN SAINT LUCIA?
The Pitons are two volcanic mountains our very own World Heritage Site in St. Lucia, linked by a ridge called Piton Mitan. The two Piton Mountains are perhaps the most photographed feature on the island. The larger of these two mountains is called the Gros Piton and the other is called Petit Piton. The famous Sulphur Springs is the hottest and most active geothermal area in the Lesser Antilles. The park is approximately 45 hectares and is billed as the Caribbean’s only drive-in volcano. There are man-made hot pools where locals and visitors alike frequent for the healing properties of the mineral-rich water.
HOW IS THE CLIMATE IN SAINT LUCIA?
The local climate is tropical, moderated by northeast trade winds, with a dry season from 1 December to 31 May, and a wet season from 1 June to 30 November.
DO SAINT LUCIA HAS TAX TREATY WITH US GOVERNMENT?
On June 30, 2014, St. Lucia signed a Model 1 agreement with the United States of America in relation to Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA). As at September 1, 2016, the status of the agreement is listed as “In Force”.