New Era of the Portuguese Golden Visa: All you need to know
IT’S NOT OVER
Portugal’s Golden Visa program has been a beacon for investors seeking residency in Europe for several years. Since its inception in 2012, it has attracted individuals and families from around the world, drawn by the promise of a European lifestyle, access to quality education and healthcare and the potential for a lucrative real estate investment. Like any successful program, the Portuguese Golden Visa has not remained static. Over time, it has undergone various changes and updates. It’s vital for potential investors to understand in detail these changes, especially the most recent ones.
In this blog post, we’ll delve into the recent changes shaping the Portuguese Golden Visa program and what prospective applicants should know from October 2023.
The Latest update on September 30th 2023: Marcelo Rebelo, Portugal’s President, has approved the program “Mais Habitação”, without any changes.
Why the Portuguese Golden Visa Changed in 2023
In February 2023, the Portuguese Parliament announced a package of legal solutions to the recurrent issues in the Portuguese Economy, specifically those related to housing. The changes of the Portuguese Golden Visa were only one of the many layers the new Law proposed to cover.
According to the Prime-Minister, Antonio Costa, the new bill proposed solutions to five different problem areas. Addressing to increase the housing supply is at the forefront of the bill. Beyond altering the real estate aspect of the Portugal Golden visa, the bill aims to simplify licensing, enlarge the rental market and combat speculation.
The announcement caused uncertainty around the future of the program. Without clarity, many understood that after a few months the entire program would be scrapped. Eliminating another pathway to European Residency. On July 19th, 2023 Parliament announced investors would still be able to acquire the Golden Visa, but the real estate investment route would be eliminated. Such news brought a sense of security to the investment migration industry, especially considering there would be no retroactivity clause once the law is officially enacted.
The New Program “Mais Habitação”
The highlighted amendment proposes preserving the residency by investment program yet eliminating the investment options of a 1.5M capital transfer and real estate acquisition.
The following investment routes are available as per the ratified proposal:
- Capital transfer in the minimum amount of 500,000 euros, applied in research activities carried out by public or private institutions of scientific research, integrated in the national scientific and technological system;
- Capital transfer in the minimum amount of 250,000 euros, applied to investment and/or support for artistic production, recovery, or maintenance of the national cultural heritage.
- Transfer of capital in the minimum amount of 500,000 euros for the acquisition of shares in non-real estate collective investment schemes. These schemes should have a minimum maturity of 5 years, with at least 60% of the investment directed towards companies based in Portugal.
- Transfer of capital in the minimum amount of 500,000 euros, for the incorporation of a commercial company based in Portugal, or to increase the share capital of an existing commercial company based in Portugal, along with the creation of at least five permanent jobs or maintenance of at least ten job positions, with a minimum of five permanent employees, and for a minimum period of three years.
The new Law will now be sent to Parliament and the government for signatures before it is finally published and the law takes effect within 4-8 days.
How can I apply for the reformed Portuguese Golden Visa?
Once the new Law is officially published, it will no longer possible to submit application via the Real Estate Pathway. Nevertheless, we, at Lincoln Global Partners, have catered an extensive and ever-expanding portfolio for global investors to acquire European Residency. Understanding your investment goals is the key to kick start your process and guide you through the most suitable options.