Looking to take up residency in another country while retaining your South African citizenship?
At KVN, we can help you with any advice you need in keeping your South African citizenship while becoming a foreign resident or citizen elsewhere. As South African immigration law specialists, we have extensive experience and insights into anything immigration related – from visas and work permits to temporary and permanent residency in South Africa.
With decades of experience dealing with South Africa’s Department of Home Affairs, we’re well placed to offer legal and procedural advice for retaining your citizenship in the country, as well as document services for foreign citizenship applications, such as procuring vital records and translating and/or legalising them.
If you do need specialist legal help with other aspects of tying up your life in South Africa – whether it’s winding up a business or selling property in South Africa for which you need a conveyancing attorney – we’ll refer you to the experts who can help.
Want to leave South Africa but not sure where you can become a permanent resident as a South African citizen? Here are some options that allow you to invest in a foreign country in exchange for permanent residency and/or citizenship:
Portugal was recently voted the world’s number one retirement destination, and is the third most peaceful country in the world. It also offers first world medical care and a very low cost of living. Portugal’s EU residency property scheme gives you the right to live, work and study in the country as soon as your application is approved. You can also then travel without a visa throughout the European Schengen states, and can gain EU citizenship after five years. Here are more details:
- Get EU Residency by purchasing any property in the country at €500k or more
– Urban regeneration properties qualify at €350k or more
– Rural regeneration projects qualify at €280k or more
- Get an excellent tax incentive via NHR Tax Treaty
- Mortgages are available to investors at 1% interest rate
Located between Africa’s north coast and Sicily, the archipelago of Malta is close to mainland Europe, and English is widely spoken. It offers a highly respected citizenship programme where, if you invest in property in the country, you can become an EU citizen after 18 months. Here are more details:
- You need to invest in a property of €750k or more for five years
- Alternatively, you can donate €750k to the Maltese government
- Children up to 27 years old qualify
English is widely spoken in Cyprus, and is close to mainland Europe, making it a popular emigration destination for South Africans. Their citizenship programme allows you to become a EU citizen after 9 months if you invest in property in the country. Here are the details:
- A property purchase of €2.4m or more secures citizenship
- For South Africans, investment property is available in the world class, government-approved Ayia Napa Marina
- You can sell the property after 5 years, but will need to maintain an investment of at least €500k
There are two routes to gaining citizenship in the US. The quickest and simplest route is via the US Green Card system that gives you the right to live, work and study in the country, along with your spouse and any children under 18. Another citizenship route is via the EB-5 Immigrant Investor programme, where you Invest US$900k in an approved EB-5 project, and then gain US Citizenship after five years of residency. Here are more details:
- You get a full return of your invested funds after the end of the project
- You’ll be investing in fully vetted and researched investment projects
- A local South African-based team can help you with all administration
In this Citizenship-by-Investment programme, you invest US$220k investment in the secure development of Kawana Bay in Grenada. As a Grenadian citizen, you get visa-free travel to the UK China and Schengen states in Europe, and the US E2 Investor Treaty gives you access to the UK. Here are the details:
- The investment opportunity is at the Kimpton Kawana Bay, developed by South African developers and owned by Intercontinental Hotels
- When you’re not using their unit, you can partake in a hotel rental programme, where you earn rental revenue. This is shared with the operator and helps defray your expenses as the owner.
- No annual fees
- Children under the age of 30 qualify
One of the most popular options among South Africans looking to leave the country, Mauritius is in close proximity to South Africa, in the same time zone, and doesn’t have any visitation requirements to visit. It also has a well-developed legal and banking system, with low tax rates and zero capital gains tax. If you want to become a citizen, here are the details:
- You can secure permanent residency if you invest US$375k in government approved schemes
- Freehold Property Ownership
- Choose to invest in a wide variety of villas and apartment developments
Like Mauritius, the Seychelles offers an idyllic island lifestyle in a location not far from South Africa, and only two hours ahead in time zones. Purchasing property for US$500k or more gives you permanent residency that is renewable every five years. Details are as follows:
- The investment is in the Eden Island Marina which has strong rental demand
- Freehold Property Ownership
Need help getting your South African residency paperwork in order before you leave the country? Contact us today.