1) Caribbean Region
The economy of the Caribbean region is heavily dependent on revenue generated by tourism and hospitality sectors, which means the COVID-19 pandemic is definitely bad news for this region.
Countries are locked, airlines are shut, and a vacation in the Caribbean is unlikely to be a big priority even after the pandemic subsides. This means the economic damage caused by COVID-19 is going to be worse and last for longer than during the aftermath of the frequent hurricanes that hit the region.
Countries like St. Kitts & Nevis, Dominica, and Grenada are likely to aggressively market their programs to attract valuable foreign investment into their economies. As in the past, these nations may offer a temporary reduction in minimum investment requirements as an incentive to foreign investors.
Italy was one of the first European countries to be hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. Although it is ranked fifth in terms of total cases, Italy’s economy has suffered.
Italy set up its investment immigration program in 2017, significantly later than its European neighbours that were quick to launch programs to undo the damage of the 2008 recession.
With low-risk options costing between one to two million euros, Italy’s golden visa program is significantly more expensive than golden visas offered by the likes of Portugal, Greece, and Spain.
While other countries do not have a lot of room to lower requirements, Italy can add cheaper low-risk investments to attract foreign investment into its pandemic-hit economy.
Portugal has been a success story, be it in running a popular golden visa program or protecting its citizens from the COVID-19 pandemic. Ranked 25th in the list of nations with most COVID-19 cases, Portugal may be forced to reconsider its decision to introduce major changes to its golden visa program.
Worried about excessive inflow of foreign capital into real estate in and around Lisbon and Porto, Portugal recently restricted the real-estate investment option of its golden visa program to investments outside these two cities.
Despite intense protests from wealthy foreign investors, the government stuck to its decision and has announced its implementation from 2021.
With the pandemic stopping the global economy in its tracks and with hospitality, tourism, and commercial real estate hit the hardest, Portugal’s decision now seems particularly ill-timed.
Like Portugal, the US announced a major change to its EB-5 program. Unchanged since the program’s introduction in 1990, the minimum investment requirements were increased by 80 per cent to $1.8 million for projects not in targeted employment areas (TEA) and $900,000 for TEA projects.
The US has been hit hardest by the pandemic, in terms of both human toll and economic damage.
While the US dollar’s status as the reserve currency for the global economy helps, the government may consider introducing lower investment requirements for investments directed towards the worst-hit sectors of the economy.General Information: Contact us to receive more information about this article.
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