Portugal’s Residency by Investment program, also known as the Golden Visa program, is one of the most popular routes to obtain permanent residency and citizenship in the European Union (EU). High-net-worth individuals usually seek out EU residency as a means to protect their assets and wealth as well as secure a prosperous future for themselves and their families. But with the emergence of a more globalised economic market, more and more entrepreneurs and businesspeople are applying for Portuguese residency as a means to break into and access all the lucrative business and investment opportunities that the EU market has to offer.
In this article, we take a look at the reasons why entrepreneurs are investing in a Portugal Golden Visa to expand their business opportunities.
What is the Portuguese Golden Visa Program?
Before we jump into all the reasons why entrepreneurs and businesspeople are keen to invest in the Portugal Golden Visa, it is worth learning more about the residency by investment program and what it entails.
Launched in October 2012, the Portugal Golden Visa Program is a legal naturalization process based on the law that invites foreign investors from non-EU countries to obtain fully-valid residency permits in Portugal for themselves and their families.
The Portugal Golden Visa program consists of a few simple steps and requires applicants to be at least 18 years of age, in good health, possess no criminal record, have conformed investment sources and successfully pass due diligence checks. Individuals can apply as single applicants or as a family. Eligible family members include the spouse of the main applicant and children (biological or adopted) under 18 years of age. Parents and children older than 18 years old can be included in the application if they are dependent on the main applicant.
In a timeframe of 6 months, successful applicants will receive their residency permit and will gain the right to live, work, travel and study in Portugal, with visa-free access to the Schengen Areas. As well as have access to Portugal’s healthcare and consumer rights.
If all the minimum criteria are met, applicants to the Portugal Residency by Investment program are required to purchase property in Portugal or make an alternative investment into the country – such as job creation or investing in a small local business – before the application can be filed.
Successful candidates who meet all the requirements, have made the necessary investment and are granted residency permits will have to visit Portugal for 7 days per year for 5 years to fulfil residency requirements.
Now that you know what the Portugal Golden Visa program is, here are the reasons why it is a great investment opportunity for entrepreneurs and businesspeople:
Access to the Schengen Zone
As a resident, you have the right to live, and work in Portugal, with visa-free access throughout the entire Schengen Area. This, of course, is a much-coveted privilege to have when wanting to gain access to the global market. Europe is filled with lucrative business and investment opportunities. The EU’s 28 member states include some of the wealthiest countries and is the world’s largest single market with an economic zone larger than that of the USA and Japan combined – that’s approximately 500 million consumers. Having unbridled access to this market could be the difference between your company remaining at a small operating scale or reaching international success in one of the biggest markets in the world.
Pathway to Citizenship
One of the many reasons why so many individuals seek out Portugal’s Golden Visa program is because it provides a legal path to citizenship. After successfully meeting all the program requirements and having learnt Portuguese up to a basic level, individuals are then eligible to apply for Portuguese citizenship after 5 years.
Permanent residents in Portugal have almost all the same privileges and rights as citizens – except a passport. If granted citizenship, individuals can apply for an EU passport which provides visa-free or visa-on-arrival travel to over 185 countries and territories, including the USA, Canada and Australia. Not only will entrepreneurs, businesspeople and investors have access to a vast array of lucrative opportunities in the booming economic market of the European Union, but they will have access to other prominent markets all around the globe as well.
Portugal stands as one of the premier countries in the European Union with some of the highest rates for immigration and tourism on the continent. And as the EU is known for its economically-strong member states, you would come to expect that labour in these regions is not cheap. But you’d be surprised to learn that Portugal has one of the lower average monthly salary figures in the EU.
When you compare the average salary in Portugal to the rest of Europe, it falls way below the combined average. Thus, labour is considerably more affordable here than in the rest of the EU. This could give any company set up in the country a competitive edge in the global market.
Conduct Business in a Diplomatic Country
In 2020, we have all experienced first-hand how much things can change in the blink of an eye. The worldwide pandemic has brought many economies all around the world to its knees and has shown that every nation is one step away from total collapse caused by unpredictable disasters – no matter how strong or powerful you once were as a country. There is no better example than what is currently transpiring in the USA. Once a formidable economic force, the USA is now on a downward spiral in every sense – economically, politically and socially – and is far from an ideal or conducive place to conduct any form of business at this moment in time.
Portugal, on the other hand, is a diplomatic country of note that always strives to maintain good relationships with almost every country in the world and consistently stays open to new business opportunities. After all, there is a reason the country has one of the most powerful passports in the world. Suffice to say, hedging your bets with Portuguese citizenship is one of the safer options on the market when seeking to expand your business internationally.
High Yet Affordable Standard of Living
The final reason why entrepreneurs, businesspeople and investors alike are attracted to the Portugal Golden Visa program is the country’s high standard and low cost of living. When compared to other EU nations like Germany, France and the Netherlands, Portugal’s cost of living is relatively economical yet still manages to offer world-class healthcare, quality education, warm weather, beautiful architecture, delicious food, pristine beaches and so much more in return. Why not conduct business in paradise?
Book a Free Consultation
Before applying to any Citizenship or Residency by Investment program, individuals must ensure that they are rendering the services of a government authorized agent and advisor like Savory & Partners. The internet is rife with fraudulent companies offering scams that promise citizenship within an implausible timeframe and at an impossibly low price. If it’s too good to be true, then it probably is.
Savory & Partners is a government-approved agency that specializes in granting second citizenship and passports to high-net-worth individuals and families. We are a British Authorised Agent with decades of experience who has helped over 1,100 families obtain second citizenship.
If you would like to expand your business into the EU market by applying to the Portuguese Golden Visa program or would like to learn more about the other European residency through investment programs on offer, then contact us today for a free online consultation and one of our agents will happily aid you in your endeavours.
We are available on every channel convenient for you.