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Being a small country in size or shape does not mean being small in spirit, heart or ambition. There is a saying which says that “everything good comes in a small package” and Malta is the living proof of it.
Malta – A leading economy in the EU
Investing in the Hidden Gem of the Mediterranean.
A member of the European Union since 2004, Malta may be the smallest economy in the euro-zone but has the heart of a giant. Having weathered the euro-zone crisis thanks to a low debt-to-GDP ratio and a tax and business-friendly approach, it has done much better than most heavyweight European titans.
Also, and as a result of the thriving economy, the Real Estate market is also experiencing high and steady growth. With double-digit growth in 2018 and reputed as the worlds fastest-growing housing market this albeit small country with the heart of a giant can satisfy any investment appetite – including more traditional ones.
And if that wasn’t enough, Malta achieved a GDP growth of a staggering 6.4% in 2017 and 6.2% in 2018. The International Monetary Fund has placed Malta second among all the countries in the world regarding the largest economic growth forecast for 2019. Moreover, and according to the 2019 EU Commission Winter Forecast, this will be the fastest-growing economy in Europe in 2019 and 2020 with a growth rate expected to be 3 times as much as the rest of the EU.
As said before – a small country with the heart of a giant. A big giant.
Malta Individual Investor Program (MIIP) – an investment with invaluable returns
Having said that, Malta’s value proposition is more than history, tradition, opportunity and growth. Glueing all the above together – and more – Malta has state-of-the-art Investment Immigration schemes which can either grant residence or citizenship by investment after passing the most stringent and a high standard 4-tier due diligence process.
The Malta Citizenship by Investment Program, technically known as the Malta Individual Investor Program (MIIP), which was open for applications until the 30th September 2020, aimed to attract to its shore applicants from all over the world which are of the highest standard, not only willing to become citizens by investing in a country but people that appreciate and understand what the Maltese flag and the Maltese Cross represents.
The Malta Individual Investor Program (MIIP) is regulated by the Maltese Citizenship Act and the Individual Investor Program of the Republic of Malta Regulations, 2014. Applications are submitted to the Maltese Individual Investor Program Agency (MIIPA), and all successful applicants are granted with a Certificate of Naturalization in return for their contribution to the economic development of Malta, as provided in such regulations.
A revised Malta Individual Investor Programme
On the 20th November 2020, the Maltese government has released the new expedited route for Citizenship by Investment in Malta. Formally known as Maltese Citizenship by Naturalisation for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment, is commonly referred to as the Maltese Exceptional Investor Naturalization (MEIN) procedures.
The Maltese Citizenship by Naturalisation for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment is regulated by the Maltese Citizenship Act (CAP. 188) and the Legal Notice 437 of 2020.
Advantages of the Maltese Exceptional Investor Naturalization (MEIN) procedure
Applying through of the Maltese Exceptional Investor Naturalization (MEIN) procedures creates a clear win-win situation for both the country and the discerning eye of the applicant who not only can see the opportunity but also appreciates history and tradition. By becoming a Maltese Citizen, applicants receive a wealth of intangible benefits, such as:
- Freedom of movement within over 160 countries (EU, UK and US included) and right to live and work within the EU;
- A European base for families and business in a European Union country, member of the Commonwealth with a strong local workforce and international mindset; and
- Citizenship for the entire family that may be passed on to future generations.
A sound and smart investment – what does this involve?
All of the above intangible and invaluable benefits can be accessible by making a sound and smart investment in a booming EU economy.
Applicants can call themselves proud Maltese Citizens and have the right to apply for a passport, once the Application submitted by the Approved Agent, which undergoes a stringent due diligence process, has been approved by the relevant Maltese authorities and the applicant has made all the relevant qualifying investment in the island.
The new Malta Citizenship by Direct Investment Regulations allows individuals and family dependants to acquire Citizenship, and therefore a Maltese Passport, by making a direct investment in the country which needs to take the following forms:
- A Property Investment: Either to purchase a property in Malta with a minimum value of €700,000 or to lease a property for a minimum annual rent of €16,000 and retain it for at least five years from the date of the certificate of citizenship;
- Government Contribution: Of €600,000 for the Main Applicant if the application for Citizenship is submitted through the standard route after 36 months, or €750,000 if it the applicant chooses the expedited route after 12 months. The amount of €50,000 is added for each additional dependant.
- Donation: A compulsory donation of €10,000 to a registered non-governmental organisation or society
The qualifying investment must be held for five years, and the applicant must show strong links to the island.
Delving deeper into the qualifying investment, one of them is to invest in the Maltese Real Estate Market. Purchase of minimum €700,000 or a lease of minimum €16,000 per year needs to be made
Also, the qualifying investment must be held during 5 years from the date of the certificate of naturalization and the property either rented or bought cannot be sublet, as needs to be the main residence of the applicants in Malta
The Consultants from Malta Sotheby’s International Realty, a brand that fells under the CSB Group umbrella, will be guiding you through the Malta Real Estate market to find the best and most suitable property for your family requirements and investment needs.
To apply for the Maltese Exceptional Investor Naturalization (MEIN), which replaced the Malta Individual Investor Programme (MIIP) different requirements are set, and a strict eligibility criterion is followed. Applicants interested in acquiring a Maltese Passport need to be law-abiding citizens and, therefore, a very important requirement is the absence of criminal records.
A fully comprehensive application needs to be submitted with proof of the source of funds and wealth of the main applicant, as well as supporting documentation like passport copies, birth certificates and other which must be legalized and counterlegalized to be accepted by the Community Malta Agency and avoid any delays in the processing of the application.
Tax System in Malta
Aside from the fact that the Maltese Exceptional Investor Naturalization (MEIN) rules lead to direct citizenship in the Republic of Malta and is not a tax residence programme, tax considerations are always important to take into consideration.
In principle, the sole fact of being a national of a country does not necessarily mean that you will become a tax resident in it or you would be subject to their taxes, and Malta does not apply Citizenship based taxation.
Malta is very well known for its favourable tax system with a vast array of tax treaties to avoid double taxation and a favourable tax system for corporations, business structuring and tax planning.
If you are interested in knowing how acquiring Malta Citizenship can impact your tax situation, or how to better structure your wealth and estate, please contact us.
How can we help you apply for the Maltese Exceptional Investor Naturalization (MEIN) rules?
Our team of experts will assist you and your family on the path to getting Maltese Passport and Citizenship through the Maltese Exceptional Investor Naturalization (MEIN) rules guiding you in every necessary step to be granted with a Certificate of Naturalization and, consequently, a Maltese passport for every applicant.
However, regardless of the amount of wealth that an individual may have, this is not enough to be granted with Maltese citizenship through the Maltese Exceptional Investor Naturalization (MEIN) rules, programme that replaced the Individual Investor Programme. Satisfying a 4-Tier Due Diligence process and creating effective links with the island is also a must.
With more than 30 years in the Financial Services industry and being one of the first Approved Agents on the island, CSB Group and its team of Advisors is your companion in the path to European Citizenship through a Sound and a Smart Investment.
"CSB provides us with a wide range of professional services and we are equally happy with any of them. We’d recommend CSB to any company looking for a solid partner to support its Malta-based business."
We chose Malta as our new permanent home and CSB Group to help us through the residency process. They went way beyond our expectations treating our application as if it were their own. Their service was nothing short of stellar from understanding our needs preparation of the required documentation, and follow-up phase during a period with the sharpest movement restrictions. Malta deserves a place on every investor’s radar, mostly because of the surprising efficiency permeating the place, efficiency which starts with CSB.
In our dealings with CSB Group for over 10 years, we have found every member of the staff and leadership team to be wholly and completely knowledgeable and professional when doing business in, and from Malta.
Liberation Group Holdings
We have had the good fortune of working with Andres and his team at CSB on a variety of citizenship and residency matters for our clients. CSB has given us thoughtful and thorough advice and been an invaluable partner. Despite being many time zones and thousands of miles away, Andres and his team are incredibly responsive and willing to speak at any hour of the day. We would certainly recommend them to anyone seeking best-in-class legal advice related to global citizenship and residency issues.
An independent investment office
"I have been working with CSB for over 12 years and the words that come to my mind are trust and responsibility. CSB is an integrated part of my companies – it’s simple and safe and lets me focus on the bigger picture."
Andreas L. Borgmann
Reddo Holding Ltd
CSB Group have been loyal partners to our development-stage medical technology company. CSB provides local oversight to our Malta subsidiary that is thorough and compliant. As a result, we have the confidence that a successful development project should yield maximum value for our shareholders.
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