August 11, 2023

No More Financial Sponsorship : Saint Kitts & Nevis CIP

Nestled in the heart of the Caribbean, St Kitts and Nevis extends an opportunity-rich citizenship by investment program. Pioneering its launch in 1984, this distinguished initiative empowers foreign investors to significantly contribute to the nation's development in exchange for an invaluable second passport. This passport unlocks the gates to over 150 countries, encompassing coveted destinations such as the UK and EU, with the privilege of visa-free or visa-on-arrival access.

Applicants seeking eligibility within this program navigate through specific criteria and investment avenues. Among these channels, the Sustainable Island State Contribution (SISC) fund plays a pivotal role, fueling diverse developmental projects across the country. Bound by legal mandates, the minimum SISC contributions stand as follows:

  • Main applicant: US$250,000
  • Main applicant and spouse: US$300,000
  • Main applicant and one dependent: US$300,000
  • Main applicant, spouse, and one or two dependents: US$350,000
  • Main applicant and two or three dependents: US$350,000
  • Each additional dependent under 18: US$50,000
  • Each additional dependent aged 18 or over: US$75,000

Complementing these contributions, applicants undertake due diligence fees, processing expenditures, and associated costs, collectively constituting the comprehensive investment.

Prior to recent developments, some applicants sought a "financial sponsorship" route, wherein a third party would assume part or total responsibility for the SISC contribution on behalf of the applicant. However, this practice has been deemed ineligible by the St Kitts and Nevis Citizenship by Investment Unit (CIU). As a direct consequence of a recent announcement, applications involving "financial sponsorship" no longer find acceptance within the purview of the Unit.

In elucidating this stance, Michael Martin, Head of CIU, underscored the essence of ensuring that the program remains accessible solely to authentic investors, poised to bolster the country's evolution. This decisive step aligns seamlessly with the government's overarching "good governance agenda," orchestrating heightened transparency and accountability within the program.

The program experiences a strategic transformation, introducing pivotal alterations including:

  • The inception of a Professional Citizenship by Investment (CBI) Board of Governors, entrusted with the oversight of Unit operations, policy counsel, investment scrutiny, and preservation of program integrity.
  • The establishment of a dynamic CBI Technical Committee, spearheaded by the CIU's Head, entrusted with comprehensive due diligence reviews, meticulous application assessment, and formulation of pertinent recommendations for approval or denial.
  • Rollout of mandatory interviews for principal applicants, thoughtfully administered by autonomous professionals or authorized Unit officials.

This holistic evolution charts a trajectory towards heightening the caliber and credibility of the St Kitts and Nevis citizenship by investment program. Capturing the essence of serenity and beauty, this enhanced opportunity is poised to captivate investors in pursuit of a cherished second citizenship.

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