Antigua & Barbuda took a hit on its citizenship-by-investment earnings for 2016 as a result of more applicants choosing to invest in real estate, businesses and individual projects instead of the National Development Fund.
Earnings from the CIP are expected to drop from 100 million East Caribbean dollars in 2015 to 80 million East Caribbean dollars in 2016, a drop equivalent to about CAD$10 million.
Officials from the country’s Citizenship-by-Investment Unit (CIU) say candidates investing directly in projects instead of the general fund means decreased revenues for the government.
“It’s not that necessarily the numbers have reduced, but the options that have been taken up by investors may change,” Thomas Anthony, Deputy CEO of the CIU, told the country’s Daily Observer website.
Antigua & Barbuda CIP: Investment Requirements
|National Development Fund||One-time investment of US $200,000.|
|Real Estate||US $400,000 in real estate property in Antigua & Barbuda. In case of joint investment, each applicant must contribute a minimum amount of $400,000. The real estate must be held for a period of at least five years.|
|Business||$1,500,000 in an approved business. In case of a joint investment application, the total investment must be for a sum of not less than $5 million with each applicant contributing at least $400,000.|
Anthony says the program still gets an average of 30 applications a month, but far more candidates are choosing real estate or business streams.
He pointed to projects such as the Sun2live solar power plant at the Antigua international airport, which was funded directly by CIP candidates.
“The investors in PV energy would go directly to an escrow account that’s administrated by the principals of the company and the people from the Ministry of Finance,” Anthony told the Observer.
“So the money will not be deposited into the identified National Development Fund.”
He added that money invested directly is difficult for the government to track.
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