Saint Kitts and Nevis: Exotically beautiful
The Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis (also known as the Federation of Saint Christopher and Nevis) is a two-island nation in the West Indies. St. Kitts is the larger island which is separated from Nevis, the smaller island situated 2 miles southeast of St. Kitts, by a shallow channel of water called “The Narrows”. These two beautiful islands are the smallest sovereign state in the Americas, in both area and population.
They are a popular tourist destination and much like their neighboring islands, they have become an important destination in the itinerary of cruise ship companies. St. Kitts is famous around the world for excellent preservation of the ecosystems.
The Federation is a member of the United Nations (UN), of the Organization of American States (OAS), the British Commonwealth and many other international organizations.
The country is an independent Commonwealth nation. The government is a constitutional monarchy with Queen Elizabeth II as its head of state.
A dominant tourist industry characterizes the economy of this two-island nation. Agriculture and light manufacturing industries also make a significant contribution to the national economy.The Eastern Caribbean Dollar is fixed at XCD2.70 per dollar of the United States of America (USD) since July 1976.
Globally, the twin island federation is recognized for its unspoiled beauty, vibrant culture and welcoming people – so much so that the U.S. News & World Report ranked St. Kitts-Nevis as one of the best islands in the world to visit.
Residency &Citizenship by Investment Program:
St. Kitts & Nevis is one of leading countries worldwide who offer citizenship in return for substantial investment. St. Kitts and Nevis has the oldest established Citizenship-by-Investment program in the world, running uninterrupted since 1984. The Government of St. Kitts and Nevis established this program to attract investors of good character to make substantial investments which benefit the development of the country.
In the world’s first comprehensive guide to countries that offer citizenship in exchange for investment, the CBI Index has acknowledged St Kitts and Nevis’ Citizenship by Investment (CBI) Program as an industry leader.
Under this program, the Government requires an investment in designated projects, along with government administrative fees. This investment will allow an applicant, who fulfills the formal and character requirements set by the Government, to qualify for St. Kitts and Nevis citizenship along with their immediate family.
There are two main options available to an investor who wishes to obtain citizenship of St. Kitts and Nevis. These two options are:
- The applicant must make either an investment in one of the approved real-estate developments in addition to paying government fees, other fees and taxes;
- The applicant may make a donation to the Sugar Industry Diversification Foundation (SIDF, a public charity) which includes all government taxes;
- Investment in approved real-estate development:
To qualify for citizenship of St. Kitts and Nevis under the real-estate option of its Citizenship-by-Investment Program, the Government requires an investment in designated/pre-approved real estate project which may include hotel shares, villas and condominium units. The minimum real estate investment required by law is US$ 400,000 for each main applicant.
Besides this investment requirement, the following processing and due diligence fees are payable to the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis:
- US$ 50,047 for the main applicant
- US$ 25,047 for the spouse of main applicant
- US$ 25,047 for any dependent children below the age of 18
- US$ 35,000 for any dependent and unmarried children older than 18 but younger than 25.
- US$ 50,047 for dependent child of the main applicant above the age of 18 years or dependent parent aged 55 or above.
Additionally to these fees, real-estate buyers should be aware that there are also purchase costs (mainly compulsory insurance fund contribution and conveyance fees) of approximately 4 – 5% of the purchase price. The investor may purchase a part of the unit or an entire unit in the designated real estate property.
The real estate cannot be re-sold until 5 years after the purchase, and after that will not qualify the next buyer for citizenship.
Two or more applicants may apply for citizenship together by purchasing one piece of real estate, provided each main applicant contributes the minimum investment of US$ 400,000.
- Citizenship by donating to the Sugar Industry Development Foundation (SIDF):
To qualify for citizenship of St. Kitts and Nevis under the SIDF Option, the Government requires a contribution to the St. Kitts and Nevis Sugar Industry Diversification Foundation, a public charity audited by PricewaterhouseCoopers. Under this option, the required investment is as follows:
- Single applicant: a non-refundable contribution of US$ 250,000 is required
- Main applicant with up to three dependants (i.e. one spouse and two children below the age of 18): a non-refundable contribution of US$ 300,000 is required
- Each additional dependent, regardless of age: a non-refundabl contribution of US$ 25,000 is required
Upon submission of an application, non-refundable due diligence fees must also be paid. These fees amount to US$ 7,500 for the main applicant and US$ 4,000 for each dependent of the main application who is over the age of 16 years.
Unmarried dependent children who are older than 18 but younger than 30 can also be included in the application. Similarly, dependent parents aged 55 or above may also be included,
The documentation required for an application is reasonable and the application procedure is straightforward. The average processing time under the SIDF option is 3 – 4 months.
The SIDF option is the most straightforward means of obtaining citizenship in St Kitts and Nevis.
NEW: St. Kitts and Nevis Accelerated 60 day process
The Accelerated Application Process (AAP) approved by the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis in October 2016 allows applications with the Citizenship by Investment Program to be accelerated to a 60 day processing period.
Interested persons applying utilizing the AAP will still be required to meet all mandatory criteria and submit the necessary supporting documents to apply for citizenship by investment.
Applications will be given an accelerated treatment from the Citizenship by Investment Unit, Due Diligence Providers and the St. Kitts and Nevis Passport Office. As a bonus this process also includes the application and processing of the St. Christopher (St. Kitts) and Nevis passport.
Applying using the AAP can see an application completed within 60 days with some applications completed in as early as 45 days.
AAP Process Fees (inclusive of Due Diligence Fees)
Main Applicant: US$25,000.00
Dependent above 16 years: US$20,000.00
In addition to the US$25,000.00 and US$20,000.00 AAP processing fees, an additional fee of US$500.00 per person will be applicable for the processing of the St. Kitts and Nevis Passport for any dependents under the age of 16 years.
Benefits of the Program:
- Visa free Travel to over 150 countries.
- No requirement of stay.
- Applicant can reside in St. Kitts and Nevis as well as in most CARICOM member countries at any time for any length of time.
- Full citizenship for life for applicant, spouse, dependents and descendants.
- As a Commonwealth citizen, the applicant receives certain preferential treatment in the United Kingdom. For example, the applicant’s children may enter the United Kingdom to study without first having to apply for student visas. After studying, they may work in the United Kingdom for two years without needing a work permit.
- Two or more applicants may apply for citizenship together by purchasing one piece of real estate.
- No personal income tax
- No wealth tax, no inheritance tax
- No other direct taxes
- The islands offer a business friendly environment that nurtures investment and growth