Saint Lucia: The Citizenship by Investment Unit (CBI) of Saint Lucia has announced new modifications to the current settings of the CIP (Citizenship by Investment Program) following the end of 2022.
Several important amendments have been made to the CIP, such as a deduction in the investment payable for real estate, a due diligence fee for developers applying under the real estate, and other substantial changes which will be put in motion from January 1, 2023, onwards.
Furthermore, Minister Ernest Hilaire has stressed the important aspect of due diligence and the other risks and fears associated with the CBI Programme of Saint Lucia. On his part, Hilaire ensured that the Saint Lucia government and its CBI Unit is performing a closely monitored and strict due diligence process.
He further conveyed that the CBI Programme is a multi-layered procedure and said that ‘’the due diligence is an important part of the process and applies to all the applicants, which the further due diligence check by the banks will follow. The international intelligence units will then check the due diligence on the next step and also do on-ground assessments of the applicant.’’
On his part, Hilaire noted that the government of Saint Lucia is planning to take a deeper look at the country’s CBI Programme. The CIU is putting immense hard work into making the Programme more effective and competitive. Minister Hilaire announced that the updates would significantly step in the rigorous but seemingly vetting process.
The head of the CIU, MC Claude N. Emmanuel, conveyed that the department has taken a step to review the offerings of the CIP programme along with the approval of the Citizenship by Investment Board and the Minister who carries responsibilities for the Citizenship by Investment Programme.
Furthermore, the CIU introduced five major amendments and key modifications in the CIP programme, which will be effective from January 1, 2023; read below,
– If a certificate would lose or damaged by any chance, the investor will be able to get it replaced after paying the fees increased from USD 100 to USD 500.
– The developers will have to pay a sum of USD 7,500, including the fee for due diligence and background check, to apply for the real estate or enterprise project after the approval of CIP.
– The price has been increased by USD 500 TO USD 5000 for the investment in the Saint Lucia National Economic Fund for an additional dependent who is twelve months old or below.
– Modifications have been made to the real-estate investment option from USD 300,000 to USD 200,000.
The CIU has also initiated a new ‘Bond Offer’ to facilitate the investment by purchasing Non-Interest-Bearing Government Bonds. USD 300,000 will be fixed as a bond purchase amount for the applicants and qualifying dependents of any number. USD 50,000 will be charged as the administrative fee.
Furthermore, the head of the CIU, CEO MC Claude Emmanuel has stated that the made amendments are focused on promoting the competitiveness of the Programme. The increased competition will also come in handy in ensuring the growth of the demand for investment products, which would benefit the people of Saint Lucia in the long run.
As per the sources, CEO Emmanuel hosted global investors in a recent event, where he called the investors and potential people with high net worth to invest in the Citizenship by Investment Programme of Saint Lucia. During the event, Emmanuel took it to extend his greeting to the group of people through a video message and stressed the convenience offered by the alternative citizenship.
Moreover, CEO Emmanuel also pointed out that despite the CBI Programme being in its early stage in the region, there has still been a significant improvement and enhancement in the overall progress.
In the video message delivered by the CIU head, the main topic was the due-diligence procedure, where he confirmed that the unit and the government of Saint Lucia would make sure that each application would be closely examined., and Only suitable and reputable persons will be selected to become the citizen of the country.
In addition, the head of CIP also took part in the 7th Annual Private Wealth Florida Forum. During the event, the officials from CIU welcomed private wealth and institutional investors, which focused on bringing the investment management community together, by which peer-driven thought supervision would be in power and offer business development, networking and education.
Amid this event, Emmanuel pointed out that Saint Lucia is a well-known choice for wealth managers looking for an investment option. He also conveyed that; Saint Lucia is undoubtedly the best option for investors in different manners. Emmanuel stated that ‘’the currency of Eastern Caribbean Dollar, is pegged with the currency of the United States, the economy of Saint Lucia is rapidly growing. The rate of USD 1 is equivalent to ECD 2.70 and has remained the same for more than 70 years.”
Additionally, CIU head Emmanuel also confirmed that the CBI Programme of the Country has successfully climbed up to the third rank in the CBI Index, a publication of the PWM Magazine of the Financial Times.
As far as history is concerned, the Citizenship by Investment Programme (CIP) was first launched in 2016. Since its existence, the Programme has welcomed potential applicants and provided substantial benefits in its endeavours, such as global mobility, wealth planning, entrepreneurial diversification portfolio, and citizenship by life. The minimum investment to apply for alternative citizenship starts from USD 100,000.
Towards the end, the citizenship of Saint Lucia can be attained by applying through four investment plans, one of which is the National Economic Fund, which is popularly known as the fund option. This option helps the country construct and improve infrastructure, including bridges, highways, schools and hospitals.