Portugal’s Golden Visa: Alive and Thriving


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An article by Henry Kent, an International Financial Adviser at Holborn.

In the landscape of residency-by-investment programs, Portugal’s Golden Visa stands out as an attractive and secure option for investors worldwide, with no slowdown in new applications. Despite recent adjustments, this program still offers appealing options for residency and potential EU citizenship.

Changes to the Golden Visa Program

The Golden Visa program is still active, but certain investment options have been altered. Notably, real estate investments and real estate-related fund investments are no longer eligible for the Golden Visa.

It’s worth noting that these changes do not affect previous or current applicants, as the new law does not apply retroactively.

Despite the removal of property investment as a qualifying option, the Golden Visa remains the only route to an EU passport without a minimum 6-month stay at the investment level.

Possible Investment Opportunities

While some investment avenues are no longer available, the Golden Visa program still offers various options. These revised investment routes aim to encourage more diverse forms of investment while maintaining the appeal of the Golden Visa program.

Portuguese venture capital / private equity funds, in particular, account for the vast majority of new applications, having the largest selection of investment options. This is also the only option requiring no active management from the investor, nor a donation to the government.

Qualifying funds with incentives, such as a fixed return, guaranteed buyback, upfront interest payments, and no fees, for example, are being subscribed to quickly.

The 5-year qualifying period for nationality will now therefore begin on the date of the Golden Visa application submission, and not on the date of the issuance of the residence permit (as was previously the case).

In some cases, this could potentially shorten the waiting time for Portuguese nationality. This is especially attractive for those affected by the delays caused by COVID-19 and the restructuring of the Portuguese immigration authority (SEF).

Investment routes available for 2024

– Cultural Heritage Support: Investing 250,000 EUR or more in support of artistic production, recovery, or maintenance of Portuguese cultural heritage;

– Venture Capital/Private Equity Fund: Making capital transfers of 500,000EUR or more for participation units in venture capital funds, provided the funds have no real estate ties;

– Company Creation: Creating at least ten jobs or five jobs alongside a capital transfer of 500,000 EUR, This can be done either by establishing a new commercial company with headquarters within the national territory or by adding to the share capital of an existing company;

– Donation to Research Activities: Investing 500,000EUR or more in research endeavours by either public or private scientific research institutions

Final thoughts

Despite the recent withdrawal of the NHR tax regime, Portugal’s Golden Visa program remains a top choice for investors seeking residency-by-investment opportunities, regardless of its changes. While real estate is no longer a qualifying option, the program still presents various investment opportunities, including venture capital, company creation, and cultural heritage support.

The revised investment routes aim to promote more diverse forms of investment while maintaining the program’s appeal and with the added benefit of a shortened waiting time for Portuguese nationality.

Overall, the Portuguese Golden Visa program remains alive and thriving.

This information is for informative purposes only. While I’ve ensured the accuracy of the information at the date of publication, please note that some details might change over time. Therefore, it is essential to seek professional advice to customize your plans according to your unique circumstances.

At Holborn Assets, our mission is to offer our clients the expert advice they need to put their money in the right place, at the right time. We’re an established firm with multiple international offices spanning the globe. If you’re interested in learning more about Portuguese-compliant investments and how they can help you achieve your financial goals, click the link below to arrange a consultation.



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