In its simplest form, a golden visa is one of the strategic ways countries attract investments from immigrants and investors in exchange for granting either residence (Residence by Investment) or citizenship rights (Citizenship by Investment). Investors who meet the requirements get these benefits through the shorter/fastest process.
This new trend is gaining momentum as countries compete to create sustainable development across all sectors of their economies.
According to Henley & Partners Holdings Ltd, “Investing in different residence and/or citizenship options worldwide offers both short-term value and long-term yield. The more access you have, the more diversified your assets, and the lower your exposure to regional and global volatility.”
The new investment strategy is growing more in Europe but gradually picking up in Africa. Below are a few African countries that currently offer this new visa type.
The island nation in the Indian Ocean is known for its pleasant tropical climate, multi-culture, and beautiful living environments.
Mauritius offers Citizenship by Investment, which requires foreign investors to acquire luxury residential real estate with a minimum value of USD 375,000 in one of its six real estate projects. Under this program, investors who meet the requirements can become Mauritian residents within six to eight months.
Successful applicants and their families get full residential rights, including the right to live, work, and retire in Mauritius. It is applicable to the whole family — including a spouse or common-law partner, parents, and biological, step, or adopted children of any age who are dependent on the main applicant. However, they cannot engage in any kind of employment in Mauritius without a valid work or occupation permit. It also includes the opportunity to rent out the investment property.
Namibia is one of the safest countries in Africa and one of the prime tourist destinations; with abundant wildlife and some of the highest dunes in the world.
The southwest African country offers Residence by Investment, which enables successful real estate investors to reside in the county and receive a five-year, renewable work permit.
Applicants are required to purchase real estate with a minimum value of USD 365,000 at the President’s Links Estate. Retirement units starting at USD 300,000 are also available for investors aged 60 and above.
The President’s Links Estate is an eco-friendly residential and golf estate located at the edge of the Dorob National Park in Walvis Bay and offering modern and sophisticated houses and villas. The Bay of Whales Walvis Bay is home to a pristine coastal area with high-quality fish, oysters, rock lobsters, and salt fields. The estate features over 745 luxury residential homes, with world-class lifestyle amenities and an environment that celebrates Namibia’s rich nature.
South Africa’s residence by investment program requires a minimum net worth of $820,000, enabling wealthy individuals to work, study, or manage their own businesses. It typically takes eight months to process.
Egypt offers investors a passport by investing a minimum of $250,000 with the option to invest $500,000 or more.
Kenya and Uganda are at an advanced stage of introducing citizenship by investment, while Rwanda and Zanzibar already have similar programs with specific terms and conditions.