Arton Capital, which specialises in investor programmes for residency and citizenship, says it has experienced a ‘substantial increase’ in the number of South Africans looking for a plan B since president Jacob Zuma’s most recent cabinet reshuffle.
“I would say about 200% increase in enquiries,” said Jacques Scherman of Arton Capital, which largely works with affluent people looking to attain second citizenships.
“Portugal, Dubai, Mauritius, Bulgaria, USA and Grenada are all programmes that South Africans keep asking me about,” Scherman said.
“There are many reasons to invest in a second citizenship,” said Scherman, “From personal safety to increased global mobility. Economic citizenship overseas opens up a world of possibilities to high net-worth investors.”
For South Africans specifically, Scherman said they are looking for an exit strategy/insurance policy against political instability, better education and prospects for children, crime and threats of violence, and the possibility of Zimbabwe style property expropriation.
“For the South African businessperson who would like to diversify their interests and investments beyond our borders, the benefits of having a second passport from a country such as Grenada would be manifold,” said Scherman.
The financial expert said that travelling on a South African passport currently allows you visa-free entry to 93 countries. Visa requirements change constantly and, for the businessperson who travels frequently, the processes and costs associated with obtaining them are inhibitory.
“Dual citizenships can also hold many investment and tax advantages, allowing high net-worth individuals to manage their wealth more efficiently and effectively,” he said.
He noted that Grenada has an E-2 Visa Treaty with the USA, which allows Grenadians to enter, and reside in, the USA after investing in an American business. Grenadians may also travel visa-free to more than 100 countries, including Europe’s Schengen zone.
One can invest in Grenadian citizenship via a non-refundable donation of around US$200,000, and have a passport in three months if the due diligence investigation doesn’t find any criminal, tax or health issues and the paperwork and funding are in order.