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Indian Millionaires Allured by Europe’s Golden Visa Programs

An overall increase of 62 percent was recorded in inquiries related to investment-based immigration from Indian nationals in 2020, while in the first five months of 2021, a total increase of 30 percent was recorded, despite the travel ban and other restrictions announced by Henley and Global Investment Partners announced restrictions on the spread of the virus.

Wealthy Indian citizens have discovered that the Golden Visa program run by some European countries will help them obtain residency in some European countries by investing in the respective region, reports.

According to Nirbhai Handa, Managing Partner, Private Individuals and South Asian Business at Henley & Partners, families now realize that for €250,000 they can buy a home in Greece, Lisbon or Portugal, and at the same time get Schengen accommodation through which they can also access Visa-free to 26 countries in the Schengen area.

“So people are now thinking, should I buy my next home in my home city like Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Mumbai or should I buy my second home somewhere in Europe and get accommodation with it?” Handa noted in this regard.

According to him, the current trend of acquiring alternative residencies is another way to reduce the sovereign risk of clients by diversifying their investments into other geographies.

Managing Partner, Private Individuals and South Asia Business at Henley & Partners emphasized that the fact that wealthy families and professionals have the time to plan their lives with their families has accelerated this trend.

Based on the data of the Global Wealth Migration Report 2020 (for 2019), 2% or 7,000 high net worth individuals in India have expressed an interest in making investments in other countries.

The same source reveals that China topped the immigration list with a total of 16,000 exits of high-income individuals, India with 7000 exits, and Russia with 5500 exits.

Earlier this year, Greece was ranked as the best location for all foreign investors interested in investing in the Golden Visa Program. This estimate was made by the immigration company Astons, which highlighted that in order to obtain a Greek golden visa, foreigners need to invest a minimum of €252,328 in the country.

Besides Greece, Portugal is also famous for its citizenship by investment program. In addition, foreigners’ interest in Portugal’s Golden Visa program has led the authorities in Portugal to extend the deadline for excluding investments in Porto and Lisbon until January 2022.

Although the Golden Visa Program is viral, providing many opportunities for citizens interested in obtaining such a visa, it has often been criticized by the European Union Commission for its use in money laundering and other criminal activities.

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