ABI MANSOOR, DIRECTOR & LICENSED AGENT
The Antigua & Barbuda citizenship by investment unit’s new online portal for submitting applications is working a treat. Inadvertently, this global pandemic has streamlined the citizenship application process in a lot of ways and resulted in a faster processing timeline. Here are some answers to questions we’ve received in recent weeks:
How long will it take to receive the passports?
In general, we advise clients to expect a 6 to 8 month timeline, however over the coming months I believe we will see this reduce to 3 to 6 months. The great majority of clients only come to the Caribbean AFTER they have received their passports and at that time we will assist with your familiarisation, banking and any other offshore foothold related needs.
Can I send everything via email for my application?
When you decide to proceed, the first thing we send you is our questionnaire. Once you have filled it in, we will complete all your government forms and email them to you for signature. We will also need copies of your supporting documents such as your IDs, your police clearances etc. All of this is provided via email so we can make your submission to the government. In order to apply for citizenship, everything can be done by email and video. The physical documents must be couriered to our offices so we can present them to the government, however initially the application is 100% digital.
Will I have to visit Antigua & Barbuda immediately?
No, you do not need to come right away. When you apply for citizenship and assuming you are successful and approved, you will be sent your passports via courier. At some point in the first five years of your citizenship, you are required to come visit Antigua & Barbuda for a minimum of five days. In reality, most of our clients come to visit in the first year or two. The best time to visit is between November and May when the weather is perfect. Warm and sunny all day with beautiful cooling breezes.
What is the least expensive route?
The least expensive route in terms of upfront cost is to make a donation to the government.
Tamarind Hills on Antigua & Barbuda’s west coast is the top-selling citizenship approved project. Whole ownership units starting at US$550,000.
What assurances are in place if I base my application on a property investment?
A property investment involves a bit more upfront cost however you can resell the property after 5 years so can save you quite a lot in the medium term. Antigua & Barbuda has had a robust property market for many generations due to the growing demand from mostly wealthy Europeans and North Americans. Today we see people from all continents investing in luxury homes in Antigua & Barbuda. The best advice I can give is to speak to someone who lives and breathes assisting clients like you and who has a good track record in property and professional services. With the right Licensed Agent as your assistant for all your needs on the ground, the benefits to you and your family, and your enjoyment of your second citizenship are almost limitless.
How can I be confident my application will be successful?
There are some core issues that can prevent your approval such as failure to disclose information that is requested in the government forms, or having an outstanding visa refusal from a country that has visa-free status with the country you are applying to. Some of the major stumbling blocks such as links to terrorism or financial crime would also lead to a refusal as you’d expect. We run all our clients through third party diligence before you sign our service agreement for us act as your Licensed Agent. We only wish to represent applicants who have an exemplary background. Most critically we work very closely with you, asking many questions when we are compiling your paperwork so we have a thorough understanding of you and your family’s status, source of income and your credentials. This offers a solid footing for us and our clients to move forward with an application with complete confidence.
Since so many of us are now isolating ourselves as much as possible, now is a good time to explore some bigger personal projects you may have had on hold. If one of those projects was to find out more about how you and your family can benefit from multiple passports, or alternative residency, let’s have a video chat and discuss.
Citizens International was created over a decade ago by partners whom invested in these routes and shelters themselves, and whom have enjoyed the freedoms and rewards derived by that for some time. It is our pleasure to arrange a private video conference with one of the company partners or international directors to discuss these potential solutions for protecting your family and your wealth.