Antigua and Barbuda is one of the Caribbean’s most prosperous nations, thanks to its tourism industry and offshore financial services. The country’s strength lies in its tropical climate and good beaches, which have made it popular as a stop-off point for US cruise ships and have attracted large investments in infrastructure. Antigua is the main population centre and the focus for business and tourism. Relatively-undeveloped Barbuda is home to smaller, exclusive resorts and a sanctuary for frigate birds. But a reliance on tourism makes the nation vulnerable to downturns in the world market. Internet gambling sites based in the country are an alternative source of revenue. However, Antigua and the US have been locked in a trade dispute over American restrictions on online gaming. For decades Antigua and Barbuda’s politics was dominated by the Bird family, with Vere Bird being the country’s prime minister from independence in 1981 until 1994, when he was succeeded by his son, Lester, who spent a decade in office. Underlying this stability was a succession of scandals, including allegations of corruption. The Bird family was also accused of abuse of authority. Antigua and Barbuda, once described by the US as a centre for money laundering, was recognised by an international task force in 2001 as being “fully cooperative” in the fight against the activity. In 2009, the country’s economy – and the reputation of its financial regulatory system – was rocked by news that its single biggest investor, Texan billionaire Allen Stanford, had been charged with massive fraud by the US authorities.
- Full name: Antigua and Barbuda
- Population: 88,710 (World Bank, 2010)
- Capital: St John’s
- Area: 442 sq km (170 sq miles)
- Major language: English
- Major religion: Christianity
- Life expectancy: n/a
- Monetary unit: 1 East Caribbean dollar = 100 cents
- Exports: Garments, paint, furniture, bedding
- GNI per capita: US $10,590 (World Bank, 2010)
Antigua and Barbuda INVESTMENT VISA
Citizenship by Investment in Antigua and Barbuda
The citizenship by investment programme for Antigua and Barbuda provides a second passport to investors offering visa-free travel to over 100 countries including the UK, EU Schengen zone and Canada. There are several options for investment to gaining citizenship in Antigua. Investors can choose to contribute $200,000 to the Antigua National Development Fund, they can invest $1.5m in establishing a business or the most popular option, to invest $400,000 in a government approved real estate project. There are fees and taxes to pay in addition. Applicants must be of outstanding character, in good health and with no criminal record. There is no requirement for an interview for the Antigua citizenship programme and in fact there is no need to travel to the country to complete the application. There is a requirement to reside in Antigua for a minimum period of 35 days during the first five years when the investment must be maintained.
- Children and dependents up to age 25 can be included (subject to restrictions)
- Investment of $400,000 in real estate ($200,000 into development fund or $1.5m in business)
- Dependent parents over age 65 can be included
- Visa free travel to over 100 countries
- Applicant fee $30,000, Spouse $5,000, Children $2,500.
- Government processing fees of $50,000 per person (under 18, $25,000)
- Due diligence fees per person: $7,500, $2,000 children, $4,000 age 18-25
- No tax on worldwide income