Portugal, one of the oldest nations in the world, is currently experiencing extensive and dynamic change. From the fifteenth to the seventeenth century, Portuguese discoveries were responsible for important advances in technology, nautical sciences, cartography, astronomy and ship building. Five centuries later, Portugal is writing new pages of its history.
Portugal claims a surprising diversity of landscapes, a wealth of leisure activities and a unique cultural heritage, where tradition and innovation blend together in perfect harmony. Its superb cuisine, fine wine and hospitable people make Portugal a tourist paradise. The climate in Portugal is influenced by its southern latitude and proximity to the Mediterranean, which offers cool summers and mild winters. Situated in the extreme south-west of Europe and just a few hours from any of the other European capitals, Portugal attracts visitors and settlers from all over the world.
PORTUGAL GOLDEN RESIDENCE PERMIT PROGRAM
All third country citizens who conduct an investment activity, as an individual businessperson or through a company set up in Portugal or in another EU Member State and who are stably settled in Portugal must be over the age of 18 and provide investment of at minimum €500,000. The applicant must remain the owner of the property for the duration of the Golden Visa, and must provide proof of no criminal record and health insurance. The primary applicant must be above 18 years old and can take with them their spouse, parents (of both main applicant and spouse) if they are economically dependent and children who are of age, single, students and economically dependent on the applicant. Investors must stay in Portugal at least seven days on the first year and fourteen or more days in all subsequent years to maintain their resident status.
The rules governing the granting of Residence Permit for Investment (ARI / Golden Visa), in force from 8 October 2012, enable third country nationals to obtain a temporary residence permit to conduct business activities with visa waiver to enter national territory.
Under the Golden Visa programme, non-EU citizens simply need to carry out the investment set out in the law to qualify to obtain a residency permit in Portugal. This residency permit will allow the investor and his family members to enter and/or live in Portugal and to travel freely within the vast majority of European countries (Schengen space)
Since the inception of The Golden Visa program in 2012, it has been a remarkable success in bringing foreign investment into Portugal and contributing to the revitalization of the real estate market. Data released in the end of January 2017 shows the scope of that success over a five year period. The full investment amount has been €2.7billion from 4423 investors, almost all of whom chose to acquire real estate. So far in the first month of 2017 there have been 221 investors approved to get the Golden Visa, doubling the average amount per month in 2016, and shows the continued interest in ARI.
The primary area of origin for investors has been China, attracting over 3100 investors in whole, followed by Brazil with only 282 then Russia with 159. This means the overwhelming majority of the interest has been from the Chinese market, demonstrating both the buying power of Chinese entrepreneurs and the interest of the Chinese market in pursuing European education, healthcare and potential citizenship.