5 de octubre de 2023

Residency by investment programs, Spain vs Portugal

residency by investment program

Introduction to residency by investment programs

Residency by Investment programs have become a popular pathway for high-net-worth individuals to gain residency, and in some cases, citizenship in foreign countries. These programs, often referred to as «Golden Visas,» allow individuals to make significant financial investments in exchange for residency rights. Two countries that have been at the forefront of this trend in Europe are Spain and Portugal. Both nations have attracted a myriad of investors with their unique offerings, but recent developments have shifted the dynamics of these programs.

A recent report by the European Parliament sheds light on the wider impact of these programs. As of 2019

42,180 applications under Citizenship by Investment (CBI) and Residence by Investment (RBI) schemes were approved, resulting in over 132,000 individuals, including family members, obtaining residence or citizenship in Member States via these schemes, with a total investment estimated at EUR 21.4 billion. This reflects the significant economic footprint of these programs across Europe.

Portugal’s Golden Visa: An overview

Given Portugal’s proximity to Spain, it has long been a popular choice for those considering the Golden Visa program. Portugal does offer a slightly more cost-effective option and a quicker path to citizenship. The country’s rich history, beautiful coastline, and favorable tax regime have made it a top choice for many.

However, it’s important to note that as of the end of 2023, Portugal is set to retire its Golden Visa scheme. This decision was announced by the government in February 2023, with the aim of addressing housing issues for local residents. The impending closure of this program has left many potential investors reconsidering their options.

Spain’s Golden Visa: A rising star

As Portugal’s program sunsets, Spain’s Golden Visa shines brighter on the horizon. Spain, known for its rich cultural tapestry, diverse landscapes, and robust economy, offers a compelling alternative.

  • Diverse Investment Avenues: Spain’s program is not just limited to real estate. Investors have the flexibility to venture into various sectors, from technology startups to traditional businesses, ensuring a broader scope for capital growth.
  • Cultural and Lifestyle Perks: Whether it’s the lively fiestas, the world-renowned gastronomy, or the sun-kissed beaches, Spain promises a life that’s both enriching and exhilarating.
  • Economic Prospects: Spain’s economy, being one of the major players in the EU, offers stability and growth potential, making it an attractive hub for business and investment.

Why Spain stands out

Spain’s Golden Visa program offers several advantages:

  1. Diverse Investment Options: From real estate to business ventures, Spain provides a range of avenues for potential investors.
  2. Cultural Richness: Spain’s diverse regions, from the flamenco rhythms of Andalusia to the architectural wonders of Catalonia, offer a tapestry of experiences.
  3. Economic Stability: As one of the largest economies in the EU, Spain offers a stable environment for both personal and business investments.
  4. Family Benefits: Spain’s program extends to immediate family members, ensuring that the benefits are enjoyed by loved ones.

The future of residency by investment in Europe

With changes afoot in Portugal and Spain’s program gaining traction, the landscape of Residency by Investment in Europe is evolving. For potential investors, it’s crucial to stay informed, understand the nuances of each program, and make decisions that align with both financial and personal goals.

In conclusion, while Portugal’s Golden Visa has had its time in the sun, Spain’s program is now shining brighter than ever. As the dynamics shift, Spain stands poised to welcome a new wave of investors seeking the myriad benefits of European residency.

Which Golden Visa is better, Spain or Portugal?

When comparing the Golden Visa programs of Spain and Portugal, several factors come into play. Initially, Portugal’s program gained immense popularity due to its relatively lower investment thresholds and the potential for a faster path to citizenship. However, with Portugal’s recent announcement to phase out its Golden Visa scheme in urban areas by the end of 2023, the dynamics are shifting.

Spain’s Golden Visa, on the other hand, remains consistent, requiring a real estate investment of €500,000 or alternative significant financial contributions. While both countries offer visa-free travel within the Schengen Zone, Spain’s program stands out for its flexibility, as there’s no mandatory continuous residence requirement. Additionally, Spain’s rich cultural tapestry, diverse landscapes, and robust economy make it an attractive destination for potential investors.


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