Hungary has given permanent residence to 2,000 candidates, while 500 investors have been handed a Bulgaria green card in the last year.
The major draws of the Hungary program include a fast, four-week processing time and access to the Schengen zone of countries in exchange for an investment of 300,000 euros in guaranteed government bonds. This is relatively low compared to other countries, and completely safe. The money is repayable without interest after five years.
Hungary Investment Immigration Program: Benefits
- No physical presence requirement.
- Access to Schengen zone.
- Low investment requirement and low risk.
- No specific requirements regarding business background, source of funding, language skills or education requirements.
- Applicant’s family can be part of application.
- Access to free education.
The country offers access to public health and education, as well as providing integration help to new immigrants where required.
Hungarian citizenship, and the resulting European Union passport, can be applied for after seven years as a permanent resident, provided a basic grasp of the language has been achieved.
There is no physical presence requirement, and both children over 18 plus parents of the applicant can be included. Everyone included on the application can live and work in Hungary, and benefit from government services, if they desire.
Bulgaria offers effectively the same deal, but for a 512,000 euro investment.
Slight differences in the Bulgarian program, which has been running since 2009, include immediate permanent residence and the right to apply for citizenship within five years. Again, the investment is returned without interest after five years.
Bulgaria Investment Immigration Program: Benefits
- Permanent residence without mandatory physical presence or language requirements.
- Fast track access to citizenship.
- Easy access to the European Union and other developed countries.
- Residence permits for family members included in the application.
- Favourable tax regime and trade environment.
- Access to quality healthcare and education facilities.
Bulgaria is not currently part of the Schengen zone, although it could achieve membership as soon as 2017.
Bulgaria also allows candidates to double their investment and get a pathway to citizenship in half the time – two-and-a-half years instead of five.
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