What is our long-term program?
During the last thirty years, an increasing number of countries have introduced Citizenship by Investment (CBI) or Residency and Citizenship by Investment (RCBI) in order to attract foreign capital and boost national economics. St. Kitts, Canada, the United States initially launched the By Investment category in the late 1980s or early 1990s. CBI or RCBI have been adopted gradually in the rest of the world, especially the European countries changed their approach to admit immigrant investors as instruments for emerging from the crisis of recession in 2008. Recently CBI and RCBI have continuously been favored by the market. Why? Frankly speaking, I just make it in a quite simple way, ‘due to the highest profit’.
But does ‘everyone’s doing it’ make it right?
If we change our vision into the immigration industry in the long run, what is the future like?
Personally speaking, the future will be namely entrepreneur, talents and labor scheme.
This judgment simply comes from the perspective of inbound countries. In the past few years, from the perspective of by Investment Programs, it always comes along with the news of constant shutdowns.
UK shut down three investment-based immigration programs in 2022, retaining the entrepreneurial immigration category. Hungary requires investment in no-interest government bonds, but as of April 2017, its program is suspended. Canada closed down its Quebec Investment Immigration Program in 2018, retaining the entrepreneurial immigration category. Australia has frozen the quota for investment immigration in this financial year 2023. New Zealand Only approved a handful of applicants for the investment immigration program during 2020-2022, along with the new policy doubling the investment capital amount. On February 14, 2023, Ireland officially announced to shut down the investment immigration. Regarding as the Portugal Golden Visa Program, on September 30th, 2023, the president has signed the “Mais Habitação” law. On 6th of October the “Mais Habitação” law is officially published. The new policy about this program will be valid without property acquisition available. This also means that Portugal’s property acquisition program, which has been in place for 12 years, is officially closed. The U.S. EB-5 investment program has risen to $800,000 with a multi-year waiting list. What is happening?
I stand it as By Investment Scheme is hard to make itself logical politically. Because politics is a ‘majority’ choice, but these CBI and RCBI tend to give the impression of ‘buying residence and citizenship only with money’, which it is difficult to sustain politically, especially in developed countries. Take EU as an example, R.Baubock(ed.)(2018) in his article, Debating Transformations of National Citizenship, argues that a person who has enough ready cash to choose Citizenship by Investment has no incentives to establish relations of mutual trust and responsibility with locals, so giving them a golden passport weakens a community built on solidarity and collective decision-making. As to the second, selling the privileged of citizenship brings economic inequality into the political sphere, thus undoing democracy’s historic commitment to shield each citizen’s political power from the effects of economic inequality.
Then which programs are politically correct in this logic?
First of all, Entrepreneur Scheme is well-deserved as pointing to how important they are for creating jobs and economic growth. According to the new report by the American Immigration Council on Aug 29, 2023 , New American Fortune 500 in 2023: The Largest American Companies and Their Immigrant Roots, reveals that an impressive 44.8% of Fortune 500 companies in 2023, equating to 224 companies, were founded by immigrants or their children. Such as Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, SpaceX, SolarCity, he is the South African immigrant to the United States. Walt Disney, CEO of Disney, he is the son of Canadian immigrant.The 224 immigrant-founded companies made $8.1 trillion in revenue in 2022 and employed over 14.8 million people. It sheds light on the contributions of immigrant entrepreneurs and their children to the U. S. economy. ‘Their innovative contributions and dedication to entrepreneurship have contributed significantly to the United Sates’ standing as a global economic powerhouse as evident in this report.’ said Steven Hunnard, a senior data scientist at the American Immigration Council.
When it comes to Talent Scheme, which country would not welcome Messi, Yo-Yo Ma, Tailor Swift, Oppenheimer etc. with open arms? The value of human capital is widely recognized as the main resource that can propel economies to the top tier of competitiveness, especially in the ‘knowledge-based’ industries such as high-tech, financial services. Not only the old players in the immigrant countries such as Canada, the States, Australia, or the newer ones such as EU countries, Singapore, Japan are gradually focusing on attracting more talents such as young scientists and professionals globally.
Regarding as the Labor Scheme, especially developed countries or regions heavily rely on the migrant labors due to the shortage of low-skilled workers and the age issues. According to Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) , Characteristic of recent migrants, labor migrants make a significant contribution to the Australian economy, especially in the health care and social assistance(11%), accommodation and food services (8%).
From those 3 perspectives as discussed, take a fresh look at current immigration programs worldwide.
Entrepreneur programs, especially active ones, are still available in most developed countries or regions. Such as L1A Intra-Company Transferee executive or manager and EB1C attracting certain multinational manager or executive in the US, Federal Startup Visa Program(SUV), Intra-Company Transfer Visa (ICT), and Manitoba Business Investor Stream (Entrepreneur Pathway) in Canada, Entrepreneurship Visa (Employment Pass/EntrePass) in Singapore, Investor/Business Manager Visa in Japan.
Talents programs are even more diverse, such as EB1A requiring extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business or athletics, EB1B outstanding professor and researchers, NIW need National Interest waiver with professionals holding advanced degree or exceptional ability in the US, Federal Self-employed Program welcoming the talents in culture, art or sports area in Canada, Global Talent Visa Program (GTI) in Australia, Digital Nomad Visa in Portugal, Spain and Greece, Highly Skilled Foreign Professionals in Japan, Top Talent Pass Scheme and Quality Migrant Admission Scheme in HK, Talent Recruitment System in Macau, Overseas Networks & Expertise Pass in Singapore.
The Labour Scheme keeps great volume in demand, such as EB-3 skilled workers in the US, the strong demand for hiring meat cutters, truck drivers, auto mechanics, and farm pickers around the world in Canada, Work Permit applied by the semi-skilled foreign workers in the construction, manufacturing or the services sector in Singapore and etc.
Any action considering about this trend?
For us, Globevisa has earned the reputation as the “Amazon of the immigration world” due to our diverse portfolio of over 300 programs among 45 countries. Even for one single country, we offer a full product line. For example, In Portugal, we offer different investment options for the Golden Visa program for real estate(closed) and funds, meanwhile providing service for the D2, D7, NOMAD visa programs. In Singapore, Globevisa’s headquarter, we offer even more, Entrepreneurship Employment Pass, Family Office Employment Pass, Employment Pass With Local Sponsorship, Overseas Talents Pass, Global Investor Programme, Bank Account Service, Singapore Primary & Secondary Education Service and etc. This multi-program system allows Globevisa to provide clients with the widest range of options, and we can really do just that: provide clients with the right immigration program that suit them most, we are not limited to a few lucrative options.
Globevisa always takes clients’ need as priority, we are aiming to help our clients to relocate worldwide and live in a desired lifestyle.
(Edited by Shanshan Fan, and Siren Chen)
1. Judith Gold & Ahmed El-Ashram, A Passport of Convenience, FIN. & DEV., Dec. 2015, at 48, 48–49
2. Xin Xu, Ahmed El-Ashram & Judith Gold, Too Much of a Good Thing? Prudent Management of Inflows Under Economic Citizenship Programs 4 (Int’l Monetary Fund, Working Paper WP/15/93, May 2015) [https://perma.cc/MKR7-LV4U]
3. Baubock R., What is wrong with selling citizenship? It corrupts democracy!, in Shachar A., Bauboc R. (ed.), Should citizenship be for sale?, EUI working paper, 2014
4. Adim L., Between Benefit and Abuse: Immigrant Investment Programs, 62 St. Louis University, L.J. 121, 2017
5. Baubock R.(ed.), Debating Transformations of National Citizenship, EUI working paper, 2018
6. American Immigration Council, New American Fortune 500 in 2023: The Largest American Companies and Their Immigrant Roots, Aug 29, 2023
7. Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Characteristics of recent migrants, survey, 2019