A picturesque island in the Caribbean boasting UNESCO World Heritage Sites and a number of luxurious resorts dotting the white beaches, St. Kitts and Nevis is all this and lots more. As it was among the first of the ‘West Indies’ islands to be colonized, it is called the ‘Mother Colony of the West Indies.’ St. Kitts and Nevis consist of two main islands, St. Kitts and Nevis and St. Kitts also hosts the capital Basseterre. The island was previously dependent upon the sugar industry for its revenues but has since then shifted to being a financial services and tourism hub.
The islands started the Citizenship by Investment Program (CIP) in 1984 and it is among the longest-running programs in the world. The program was revamped in 2011 on the basis of the new Saint Christopher and Nevis Citizenship by Investment Regulations, 201l. The new regulations streamlined the process and now the entire process is run by a special unit called ‘Citizenship-by-Investment Unit (CIU)’ directly under the Office of the Prime Minister. Citizenship under the new regulations is valid for a lifetime and there is no need for any visits or actual residency in the Islands.
Basic Eligibility for St. Kitts and Nevis CIP
The St. Kitts and Nevis CIP is open to all individuals who fulfill the requirements laid down by law. The only specific barrier is that present applications are not accepted from citizens of Iran.
The basic eligibility for an applicant is:
a) at least eighteen years of age;
b) submits all documents as required;
c) makes the required investment.
Requirements for investment
There are two modes (anyone to be chosen) through which an applicant can choose to make an investment in St. Kitts and Nevis-
a) Making a contribution to the Sugar Industry Diversification Foundation
If the applicant chooses to select this option, he can make a non-refundable contribution as per the following table:
One Principal applicant — $250,000
An applicant with three dependents — $300,000
An applicant with five dependents — $350,000
An applicant with seven dependents — $450,000
Additional contribution for each dependent child above 18 years but below 25 years — $50,000
The second option is to make an investment in approved real estate and the investments to be made are provided below.
b) Investment amounts for Approved Real Estate
The investment in an approved real estate has to be made after the application is preliminarily approved. The investments can be made individually or jointly and details are as follows:
Each applicant or — $400,000
Share of each applicant in a joint investment — $400,000
Dependents eligible for application
Dependents are also eligible to apply for a residence along with the main applicant in the St. Kitts and Nevis CIP. The following persons are applicable for such an application are:
a) Spouse of the main applicant
b) Children below 18 years or if between 18 and 25 years they must be principally dependent upon the main applicant and must be in full-time education in a higher educational institution.
c) In the case of parents of the main applicant or spouse, they must be above 65 years must be economically dependent on the main applicant.
d) Mentally or physically differently-able children above 18 years.
Cost of the program
The applicants for the St. Kitts and Nevis CIP have to pay the following fees for their application:
a) Due Diligence Fee:
Principal applicant — $7,500
Dependent applicants — $4,000
b) Special Fee for applicants who select the real estate option.
Principal applicant — $50,000
Spouse of the main applicant — $25,000
Each child below 18 years of the main applicant — $25,000
Each dependent above 18 years — $50,000
An application fee of $47 is levied for each certificate of Registration.
The time duration for procedures under the program
The process is normally completed within 90 days.
Advantages of the program
The CIP provides the best opportunity to acquire St. Kitts and Nevis Citizenship. As a Kittitian, you become a proud citizen of one of the most peaceful and picturesque countries and acquire the right to reside and work in the country. The St. Kitts and Nevis passport is valid for a lifetime and your child can acquire St. Kitts and Nevis citizenship by descent. The St. Kitts and Nevis Passport enable hassle-free travel to more than 130 countries including the European Union, United Kingdom, and Canada. Due to the business and investment-friendly policies of the Government, it can also be used as your business headquarters. The country also has an extremely friendly taxation policy that exempts global income.