Individuals from all across the world share the same desire for visa-free travel, financial security, family safety, and privacy above all. One way to reach those desires is through the Curaçao Investor Permit Program – an immigrant investment program aimed at qualifying non-EU, non-EEA, and non-Swiss individuals seeking EU residency and the possibility of EU citizenship.
In exchange for an investment in the nation’s economy, successful applicants and their immediate family members are granted residency in the Dutch Caribbean island and citizenship rights after five years. While a handful of programs offered by other countries adopt their own variations of this concept, the Curaçao Investor Permit Program is undoubtedly a unique scheme.
Curaçao Investor Permit Program: A Brief Overview
Launched in 2014, the Curaçao Investor Permit Program is a government initiative to attract foreign investors and boost the nation’s economy. It grants non-EU/EEA and non-Swiss nationals and their immediate family members residence permits, which can lead to Dutch citizenship in as little as five years.
While there are many residency and citizenship by investment programs like the Vanuatu or Grenada citizenship by investment program, Curaçao’s program does not directly lead to citizenship; Permit holders can apply for Dutch citizenship after completing the naturalization period of five years. In exchange for a qualifying investment worth at least $280,000, investors can gain long-term or permanent residency in a beautiful, tranquil Caribbean island and apply for a Dutch passport in little to no time, granting them freedom of movement in the European Union.
Why invest in Curaçao?
Curaçao is a Dutch-Caribbean autonomous country that forms part of the Dutch Kingdom. It is perfectly situated in the Southern Caribbean, just off the coast of Venezuela, and is lush with beaches tucked into glorious coves. The island enjoys abundant natural diversity, expansive coral reefs, and thriving marine life, making it an ideal location for anyone who loves the beach and scuba diving.
While graced with palm trees, calm, crystal-blue waters, and endless sunshine, the true gem of this nation lies with the local population. Dutch, Papiamentu, English, and Spanish are all widely spoken in Curaçao, where certain communities also speak French and Portuguese.
Being strategically situated in Latin America, it is incredibly convenient for a diverse demographic of investors looking to establish distribution centers that bridge Central, North, and South America with the European Union. Furthermore, a skilled and friendly local population makes the Curaçao Investor Permit Program ideal for international investors looking to set up their businesses offshore or settle down on a tranquil island.
To obtain a residence permit through the Investor Permit Program, applicant investors must meet the following criteria:
- Have sufficient financial resources to place an investment, and have the sufficient means to support themselves as a resident in Curaçao
- Hold a clean criminal record and possess good behavior
- Posses a private health insurance policy
- Have a general interest in Curaçao
- Prove that the investment was made legitimately and that the investment has a real economic benefit to the nation
Investment Options for the Curaçao Investor Permit Program
- Real estate investment – The main applicant and primary investor may purchase a local property and qualify for a residence permit.
- Invest in an existing business – The applicant may incorporate or buy shares in a locally-operating company. The primary requirement is that the entity has a “local substance:” The business operates in Curaçao, there is one local director, and it maintains local financial administration.
- Purchase of securities – The applicant may invest in a company listed on the Dutch Caribbean Securities Exchange (DCSX). The issuer of the securities can be a local company or a foreign entity; there must be proven local substance in Curaçao.
Minimum Investment Amount
Note that each investment option comes with its own residence permit category. In each case, a residence permit can be renewed if the investor’s circumstances remain unchanged.
- Three-year renewable residence permit for a minimum investment of $280,000
- Five-year renewable residence permit for a minimum of $425,000
- Immediate residence permit for a minimum investment of $850,000
$280,000 investment option
Applicants are granted a three-year renewable residence permit for a minimum investment of $280,000. This can be placed in real estate or their own business. Provided that your investment is maintained, you can renew your permit until you become eligible for a Curaçao citizenship application.
$425,000 investment option
Applicants are granted a five-year renewable residence permit for a minimum of $425,000. This can be placed in real estate or a business. Investors are capable of renewing their permits and applying for Dutch citizenship to acquire an EU passport.
$850,000 investment option
Applicants are granted an immediate residence permit for a minimum investment of $850,000. Qualifying investors acquire an indefinite residence permit valid for an indefinite period, provided they place the investment in real estate, business ventures, or purchase securities listed on the Dutch Caribbean Securities Exchange.
The Benefits of Curaçao's Immigrant Investment Program
There are a host of advantages to applying to Curaçao’s investor program besides acquiring a residence permit and obtaining EU citizenship after five years. These are as follows:
Dynamic investment opportunities
The Curaçao economy is growing alongside its established business infrastructure built to accommodate international business operations. This, along with its investor-friendly policies, makes investments in the nation attractive for anyone with long-term financial goals. There are abundant opportunities to invest in businesses or real estate, with anticipated high return rates.
Excellent international trade relationships
Curaçao is committed to its investors, boasting investment-friendly government policies that protect foreign investments. Since the Dutch Caribbean autonomous country is part of the EU trading bloc and has international trade agreements with many other nations, trading here is welcomed and straightforward.
If you’d like to include residency for your family, it’s possible with the Curaçao Investor Permit Program. You can rest assured that your children will have plenty of advantageous and ample educational prospects. One such prestigious example is the International School of Curaçao (ISC), which offers an excellent international curriculum.
Low entry requirements
The entry requirements for Curaçao’s Investor Permit Program are highly flexible. All that’s required is to prove you have enough funds to make the qualifying investment, hold a clean criminal record, and possess private health insurance coverage. In return, you are granted a long-term or permanent residence permit, depending on your investment, and possible eligibility to apply for Dutch citizenship after five years of residency.
Curaçao’s official currency is the Netherland Antillean Guilder (ANG), which has a solid exchange rate and a history of being resilient against erratic currency fluctuations.
Dutch, Papiamentu (Portuguese-based Creole), and English are the official languages in Curaçao, making it easy for American expats to settle down or conduct business in the island nation.
The Curaçao tax system provides residents with plenty of tax advantages. There are low export tax rates, and certain businesses linked to exporting or importing are exempt from paying import duty, turnover tax, and excise tax. Moreover, anyone who plans to retire in Curaçao may be pleased to know that residence permit holders avoid double taxation as Curaçao is part of the Dutch Kingdom of the Netherlands.
Obtaining a Work Permit in Curaçao
One of the drawbacks of the Curaçao Investor Permit Program is that when you obtain the residence permit through the investor program, you are not automatically granted the right to work in the country. Instead, you must apply for a work permit.
To obtain the permit, you must find an employer willing to sponsor your work permit and launch an application on your behalf. Generally speaking, it takes around three months for your work permit to get approved, so if you’re eager to work there, ensure you start the process as soon as you have your residence permit.
Health Insurance Deposit
To successfully acquire the investor’s permit, you and your immediate family must have adequate health insurance coverage. This includes coverage for admission to a sanatorium or institution providing psychiatric care.
In addition to having a private health insurance policy, investors must pay a security deposit to obtain residence permits. The deposit amount varies according to the applicant’s nationality.
An EU Golden Visa in the Caribbean
The beauty of the Curaçao Investor permit is that it automatically grants you the same rights of movement and settlement within the Netherlands, similar to Dutch residents. This means that you can indefinitely reside on a Caribbean island with your residency permit and can spend as much time as you want in the Netherlands.
Moreover, since obtaining Dutch citizenship also requires living in the Netherlands, the Curaçao Investor Permit is regarded similarly to Europe’s Golden Visas, such as the Portugal Golden Visa. Individuals holding temporary residence permits and respective investments for five years can obtain EU citizenship.
1. DECIDE ON YOUR INVESTMENT AND COLLECT PAPERWORK
2. LODGE YOUR APPLICATION FOR RESIDENCY AND MAKE THE NECESSARY INVESTMENT
3. RECEIVE YOUR FIRST RESIDENCE PERMIT
4. MAINTAIN YOUR INVESTMENT AND RENEW SUBSEQUENT RESIDENCE PERMITS
5. FULFILL RESIDENCY REQUIREMENT AND APPLY FOR CITIZENSHIP AFTER FIVE YEARS
6. PASS THE CITIZENSHIP TEST AND TAKE A CITIZENSHIP OATH TO BECOME A CITIZEN OF THE NETHERLANDS
Official Documents for the Temporary Residence Permit
To obtain Curaçao’s temporary residence permit and be on the path toward citizenship, you’re required to present the following documents:
- Declaration of Source of Funds
- Proof of health insurance
- Declaration of good behavior
- A certified copy of your original birth certificate
- A legible colored copy of your valid passport
- A certified copy of your utility bill to demonstrate proof of home address
- Bank statement from a local bank stating that you have made a real estate or business investment of at least $280,000
- A bank reference letter no older than three months showcasing the integrity and sound business reputation of the applying investor
Global Citizen Solutions is a boutique migration consultancy firm with years of experience delivering bespoke residence and citizenship by investment solutions for international families. With offices worldwide and an experienced, hands-on team, we have helped hundreds of clients worldwide acquire citizenship, residence visas, or homes while diversifying their portfolios with robust investments. We guide you from start to finish, taking you beyond your citizenship or residency by investment application.
How Can Global Citizen Solutions Help You?
Global Citizen Solutions is a boutique migration consultancy firm with years of experience delivering bespoke residence and citizenship by investment solutions for international families. With offices worldwide and an experienced, hands-on team, we have helped hundreds of clients worldwide acquire citizenship, residence visas, or homes while diversifying their portfolios with robust investments.
We guide you from start to finish, taking you beyond your citizenship or residency by investment application.
By renewing and maintaining their residence permits for five years, applicants may be eligible to apply for Dutch citizenship. Curaçao citizenship requires you to have lived in Curaçao for four months and the Netherlands for five months per year for all five years of the naturalization period.
The Kingdom of the Netherlands does not permit dual nationality except for a few exceptions, including the spouse of a Dutch national who receives citizenship by marriage, asylum seekers, and Dutch citizens by birthright currently living in the Netherlands.
Should you wish to acquire Dutch citizenship by naturalization, you would be required to renounce your current citizenship.
Frequently Asked Questions about the Curaçao Investors Permit Program
What is the investor permit in Curaçao?
The Curaçao citizenship program was created to increase foreign direct investment in the nation. The program enables investors to obtain renewable residence permits and become eligible for Dutch citizenship, provided that the minimum investment threshold is met.
With the investor permit, where can I travel?
You can enjoy visa-free access to 172 countries including the EU and the Netherlands with your Curaçao investor permit, and have the right to live freely in Holland.
What eligible investments qualify for the investor permit?
You can choose to buy real estate, invest in an established business, or invest in securities and qualify for the investor permit.
What’s the minimum investment to qualify for the Dutch Golden Visa?
You must make an investment of at least $280,000 to qualify for the investor permit in Curaçao, whereby you become eligible for Dutch citizenship in five years.
Can I do the application alone?
While you can apply independently, we recommend seeking advice from a legal representative. They’ll be able to advise you on the document requirements, eligibility requirements, and the application process.
How can I get permanent residency in Curaçao?
You can get an immediate, indefinite residence permit for a minimum investment of $850,000 in Curaçao’s economy.
Can foreigners live in Curaçao?
Yes, holders of the Curaçao investor permit are able to live in Curaçao and the Netherlands indefinitely, as long as their permits are viable.
Can US citizens work in Curaçao?
Anyone who wants to work in Curaçao must acquire a specific Curaçao visa that permits them the right of employment there, regardless of whether or not they are Investor Permit holders.
Are Curaçao residents Dutch citizens?
Curaçao is a Dutch-Caribbean island, which makes any resident of Curaçao a resident of the Netherlands as well. Successful applicants acquire Dutch citizenship and have the right to obtain a Dutch passport.