At the beginning of the 20th century, passports were not necessary for international travel. People simply went wherever they pleased. In many cases, they didn’t need any kind of permission from a government agency. Obviously, that’s not how it works today!
Today, governments use passports to document and control their citizens’, and who enters their countries. Passports have become interlinked with our identity. A crucial factor which makes people consider having a second passport. It allows you to invest, bank, travel, live, and do business in places you wouldn’t otherwise be able to.
Second citizenships are rapidly becoming more popular. As at the end of 2015, over 20 countries are now offering citizenship by investment programmes. Most of these are in Europe and the Caribbean.
Also referred to as “Global Citizenship”, these programs were originally only aimed at high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs) and ultra-high-net-worth individuals (UHNWIs).
But in today’s world of economic and political instability, travel restrictions, and for many other reasons, more and more people from of all walks of life are expressing interest – single individuals, young married couples and young families, retirees, middle class professionals, investors and executives who are willing to make the necessary financial contributions and investments required.
There are many different reasons why an individual might seek a second citizenship including, but not limited to:
Location is an important factor when deciding which passport programme to join. Each country has its own benefits, depending on your lifestyle, business and other determining factors.
Just under 60% of all second citizenship applicants for the Malta Individual Investor Program come from countries in the Middle East. One possible explanation for this is that the Middle East has a high proportion of its UHNW wealth belonging to billionaires (40%), more than any other region in the world.
Billionaires are five times more likely to apply for a second citizenship, as they have more to gain from obtaining one and the costs of obtaining it are also lower, as a proportion of their wealth.
Read about the updated and ever-growing list of the Malta passport visa-free countries.
It is now possible to acquire second citizenship from many countries. However, the question remains; why do people consider second citizenship?