Malta - The Malta Individual Investor Programme (IIP) has been ranked as the best citizenship-by-investment program in the world by the Henley & Partners Global Citizenship Program Index (GCPI). This newly-launched index uses unprecedented, objective and scientific methodology to systematically benchmark the seven citizenship-by-investment programs available today.
“The Malta IIP is widely considered the world’s most advanced and most exclusive citizenship-by-investment program. Its position in the GCPI, based on solid research, endorses this,” says Christian H. Kalin, Chairman of Henley & Partners, the global leaders in residence and citizenship planning.
Kalin moves on to explain that Malta’s ranking as the best is bolstered by the fact that more than EUR 1 billion has been committed to the island nation through the IIP, which has received more than 700 applications since its launch in early 2014. “This edges the world’s top citizenship-by-investment program closer to its cap of 1,800 applications,” he adds.
The outcome of the GCPI is included in the Global Residence and Citizenship Report 2015. The report, produced by Henley & Partners, places Malta in first place for citizenship-by-investment, above Cyprus, Austria, Antigua and Barbuda, St. Kitts and Nevis, Grenada, and Dominica.
The GCPI analyzes a broad range of factors such as immigration law, tax, and quality of living, as well as transparency, risk and compliance issues, from multiple sources to produce an overall global view and ranking of the different investment migration programs.
The seven citizenship-by-investment programs were ranked according to Reputation, Quality of Life, Visa Free Access, Processing Time, Compliance, Investment Requirements, Residence Requirements, Relocation Flexibility, Physical Visits Required and Transparency.
The IIP is aimed at ultra-high net worth individuals and families worldwide and is marketed internationally by Henley & Partners for the Government of Malta.
“Our firm understands the finest details of the IIP because we designed and created it with the Government of Malta,” continues Kalin.
Applicants for citizenship are required to invest at least EUR 350,000 in a property for at least five years, or rent an immovable property for a minimum EUR 16,000 a year over the same time period. They must also contribute EUR 650,000 to Malta’s National Development and Social Fund and fulfil other investments and obligations.
Kalin states that real estate in Malta has shown steady growth, averaging 5% per annum over the past few years.
“The property market is buoyant with good quality property being in high demand and short supply so prices are increasing. All the current signs suggest that property investment in Malta will continue to provide a return of around 5% per annum over the coming years.”
Kalin adds: “The level of interest remains strong and we are pleased to see that many of the early applicants are now starting to make ancillary investments, outside of the IIP, within the country. This will lead to further increased inward investment and the future creation of employment in Malta.”
Malta has just been named one of the world’s top 10 retirement destinations in 2015. It was placed seventh in internationalliving.com’s Annual Global Retirement Index due to its warm weather and low crime rate.