Portugal is located on the western coast of the Iberian Peninsula and plateau that divides the inland Mediterranean Sea from the Atlantic Ocean.
Country ProfileCapital: Lisbon
Area : 92,212 km²
Population : 10,329,484 (estimated as of January 1, 2016)
Ethnic Groups : Predominantly white Official
Language : Portuguese
Government : Unitary semi-Presidential Republic
Religion : Secular State
Time zone : WET (UTC)
Currency : Euro (Formerly escudo)
Exchange Rate: US$ 1.00 = 0.88 EUR (as of January 2016)
Why choose Portugal?
Portugal is one of the world’s most globalized and peaceful nations with an agreeable year round mild climate. Being a member state of the European Union, Portugal Residency offers open access to live, work, travel and study, including the opportunity to avail country’s healthcare and consumer rights.
What is the Golden Visa?
The Golden Visa Programme launched by the Portuguese Authorities in August 2012, is a fast track for foreign investors from non-EU countries to obtain a fully valid residency permit in Portugal (“Golden Visa”).
Aimed at attracting foreign investment to Portugal, the Golden Visa is a very straightforward and flexible programme with simple and clear legal requirements.
The Portuguese Golden Visa programme has proved to be very popular. This programme enables non-European individuals to gain Portuguese residence which can then lead to Portuguese citizenship and a Portuguese passport, as long as the required criteria
Four new Golden Visa investment categories, specifically designed to promote investment in small and medium size Portuguese companies, have been announced by the Portuguese are met.Government. These new investment routes will be implemented later this year and are detailed below:
- €350,000 investment in the incorporation of a new Portuguese company, creating a minimum of 5 permanent jobs; OR
- €350,000 additional share capital investment in an existing Portuguese company, creating a minimum of 5 permanent jobs; OR
- €200,000 investment in a Portuguese company, with an economic recovery plan in place; OR
- €350,000 investment in funds to provide additional capital to a Portuguese company, with an economic recovery plan in place.
The key requirements for a Golden Visa application remain the same and include a minimum investment period of 5 years and minimum stay requirements as detailed below:
- 7 days in the first year.
- 14 days in the subsequent two-year periods (i.e. years 2-3 and 4-5).
Main advantages of Golden Visa Programme
- No need to obtain a visa to enter Portugal or travel through Europe (Schengen Area)
- Opportunity to live and work in Portugal even with residency in a different country
- Portuguese residency is extend to dependent family members by applying for “family reunion”
- It has extremely low minimum stay periods
- Low taxes
- Permanent residency after five years
- EU citizenship after six years
Permanent Residency after 5 years
Under Portuguese Law, investor and family members who holds a valid Portuguese temporary residency title (the Golden Visa) for a period of at least 5 years will be entitled to obtain Permanent Residency in Portugal.
Under Portuguese legislation, investor and family members who has been validly resident in Portugal for at least 6 years either under a temporary or permanent residency title is eligible for obtaining Portuguese Citizenship.
They would also need to pass a simple Portuguese language test, which will serve to show sufficient knowledge of the language. However, as the Portuguese Golden Visa Programme is still recent, no Golden Visa applicants have yet reached the end of the 5-year Golden Visa term or the citizenship phase.
Portuguese Citizenship is decided as follows:
Step I. Citizenship application is filed before the Civil Registry Office (“CRO”)Officials of the CRO will verify the following:
- Applicant has had residency permit for at least 6 years
- Applicant has no prior criminal records
Step II. CRO gives a favorable opinion and sends the file before the District Attorney (Ministério Público – “MP”)
Step III. MP takes over the file and will either grant or deny the citizenship application of the applicant
- Ground of denial/opposition “lack of effective ties to the national community”
- MP finds that the applicant has no effective ties to the national community, MP will deny the citizenship to the applicant
Option I. Property Investments
- Acquisition of property above € 500,000
- Acquisition of property above € 350,000 - for properties more than 30 years old or located in areas of urban renovation.
Option II. Capital Investments
- Transfer of Funds above € 1,000,000.
- Transfer of Funds above € 350,000 for research activities.
- Transfer of Funds above € 250,000 for artistic or cultural activities.
- Transfer of Funds above € 500,000 for capitalization of small and medium size companies.
Option III. Job creation
- 1. Creation of a minimum of 10 jobs.
- Keep the investment for a minimum period of 5 years
- Funds for investment should come from abroad
- Entry in Portugal with a valid Schengen visa
- Absence of references in the Portuguese Immigration and the Schengen services
- Absence of conviction of relevant crime
- Minimum stay in Portugal: 7 (seven) days during the first year and 14 (fourteen) days during each subsequent period of two years
- Investor and family members will always have to be present at the Service of Foreigners and Boarders of Portugal for fingerprinting, signature and other formalities. In some cases, it is possible for the investor to go to the immigration services to leave the fingerprints and signature shortly before the investment and/or submission of the required documents.
The Golden Visa has the following fees, payable directly to the Services of Foreigners and Borders (SEF):
- Processing fee (application and renewal) - € 514.80 (plus € 80.20 per family member)
- Initial Golden Visa - € 5,147.80
- Initial Golden Visa for Family members - € 5,147.80
- Renewal of Golden Visa - € 2,573.90