Malta Residency By Investment- The Ultimate Guide By Experts 2022

Located in the middle of the Mediterranean sea, Malta is characterized by its beguiling blend of cultures, quiet villages, outdoor activities, and mesmerizing beaches tucked between secret coves. Some say the sun never stops shining in Malta, which is understandable given the island gets about 3,000 hours of sunshine each year. In recent years, Malta has attracted the likes of families, investors, and business-oriented individuals looking to enhance their quality of life and safeguard their freedoms. And thanks to the Malta Permanent Residence Program (MPRP), third-country nationals (non-EU) can obtain Malta residency by investment. Successful investors acquire a Certificate of Maltese Residence, which enables them and their family members to settle down in Malta and permanently live on the Mediterranean island.

In this Residency in Malta Guide, you’ll learn more about:

  • What the Malta residency by investment program is
  • Key program benefits
  • How to get Maltese residency
  • Step-by-step process to a successful application
  • Timeline to acquiring Maltese residency
  • Document requirements
  • Program costs breakdown

And so much more!

MALTA RESIDENCY PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS

  • Successful applicants obtain the right to settle, stay, and gain permanent residence in Malta
  • Visa-free travel access across the Schengen area (90 out of 180 days on a rolling basis for countries in the Schengen area)
  • Up to four generations can be included in a single application
  • Property investment options from €120,000
  • Access to Malta’s thriving real estate market
  • Access to healthcare and education opportunities
  • Must only hold onto the investment for five years

What is the Malta Residency By Investment Program?

The Malta Permanent Residence Program (MPRP) is a residency by investment program that enables successful applicants to obtain a Certificate of Maltese Residence, entitling them to reside in Malta with their family members indefinitely. The program is ideal for individuals with enough capital assets looking to enhance their mobility and quality of life.

Malta residency

Why consider Maltese residency?

In short, Malta is a very attractive location to live in or retire to. The small but vibrant nation has become somewhat of an investment hub, leading in innovation, cryptocurrency, and the tech startup space.

The Malta Permanent Residence Programme allows qualifying individuals to tap into this market of opportunities, enabling them to acquire an alternative residence in Europe. For more information on Malta, check out our all about Malta guide here.

Malta Residency By Investment Benefits

Malta boasts an excellent reputation for its splendid climate, welcoming population, low crime rates, and fantastic quality of life. These are just some of the qualities that make Malta a great location to relocate to or own a second home in.

Maltese residents enjoy the following benefits:

Excellent air and sea connections with the rest of Europe, Africa, and Asia

Excellent air and sea connections with the rest of Europe, Africa, and Asia

English-speaking country with a reputable network of international schools and universities

English-speaking country with a reputable network of international schools and universities

High-performing economy

High-performing economy

Rich culture and history

Rich culture and history

Quality healthcare

Quality healthcare

Values of personal freedom and sustainable development are highly regarded in society

Values of personal freedom and sustainable development are highly regarded in society

Dynamic real estate market with opportunities to capitalize on investment

Dynamic real estate market with opportunities to capitalize on investment

Visa-free access to the Schengen region (90 out of 180 days on a rolling basis)

Visa-free access to the Schengen region (90 out of 180 days on a rolling basis)

Family benefits

One of the key reasons that make the MPRP program so appealing is that the applicant can include their family members in a single application (for an extra fee which we cover in our costs section below). 

The following dependants can be included in the Malta application:

  • Spouse or de facto partner (in the case of a de facto relationship, documentation must be provided)
  • Children under 18 (includes adopted children)
  • Children over 18 and under 29 who are completely or largely dependent on the main applicant or spouse 
  • Children over 18 and under 29 who are considered a person with a disability 
  • A parent of the main applicant or spouse who is over age 55 and who is completely or largely dependent on the main applicant or spouse

Malta has a very good healthcare system and the Maltese universities are very good for students, providing your dependents with good infrastructure. 

How to get Malta residency?

Residency Malta Agency is the government body responsible for managing the Malta residency by investment program. The agency maintains a high standard in attracting high-caliber individuals and families, applying a strict four-tier due diligence process that ensures the most meticulous screening process. In addition, investors must fulfill a set of program requirements to be eligible to partake in the program, which we outline below.

Malta Residency By Investment Requirements

Individuals who apply for the Malta program must fulfill the following eligibility criteria:

  • Be third-country nationals (non-EU), non-EEA and non-Swiss
  • Not belong from a sanctioned country, as stipulated by the Residency Malta Agency, nor benefit from other regulations and schemes.
  • Have enough financial resources to sustain themselves and their family members, without leaning on Malta’s social assistance system
  • Demonstrate they have enough capital assets of no less than €500,000, from which a minimum of €150,000 must be in financial assets
  • Hold a clean criminal record and be considered, ‘fit and proper’
  • Not pose any potential threat to Malta’s national security
  • The application must be lodged with a Licensed Agent
  • The individual must cover all administrative fees under the program
  • Hold a valid travel document
  • Take out a health insurance coverage policy that covers all risks across Malta
  • Possess travel insurance when traveling across the Schengen area

LIST OF SANCTIONED COUNTRIES:

Anyone who is a national of or has close ties to restricted countries are ineligible:

  • Afghanistan
  • The Democratic Republic of Congo
  • Iran
  • North Korea
  • Somalia
  • South Sudan
  • Sudan
  • Syria
  • Venezuela
  • Yemen

NOTE: The Residency Malta Agency might occasionally amend the list of ineligible countries at its discretion.

Maltese Residency By Investment Processing Time

From onboarding to the issuance of the residence certificate, the whole process takes around one year. This, of course, depends on the applicant and family members’ ability to travel to Malta for biometrics.  It’s also important to flag here that the timeline depends on submitting the correct application file. Any questions issued by the Agency in relation to the submissions will stall the timeline, which will only be re-activated on receipt of valid replies.

Month 1-4

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Onboarding & documentation submission

Month 5-9

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Application processing time

Month 9

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Letter of Approval in Principle is issued

Month 10

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Applicant makes respective investments and pays all fees

Month 11-12

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Agency issues the Permanent Residence Certificate & residence cards are given in 2-4 weeks

Step-by-Step Guide To Malta Residency

There’s a multi-step process to applying for the MPRP program, which we’ll unpack below.

1. Power of Attorney & Application Submission

2. Letter Of Approval In Principle Or Rejection

3. Make qualifying investments

4. Letter of Final Approval

5. Biometric data collection & residency card issuance

1 Power of Attorney: You must sign a Power of Attorney document, empowering your chosen licensed agent to act on your behalf in all matters concerning the MPRP.

2 Letter of Approval in Principle or Rejection: The final file is presented to the Approvals Board who will determine whether you’ve been approved or rejected. Once a decision has been made, you’ll receive either a Letter of Approval in Principle or a Letter of Rejection.

3 Make qualifying investments: You must make your qualifying investments, including either purchasing real estate or leasing it out,  making a donation to a registered NGO/organization of choice, and settling the contribution to the Maltese government.

4 Application pack submission & issuance of receipt: Your licensed agent will submit an application pack on your behalf. Note, the pack must be properly completed and sent to Residency Malta Agency. A receipt will be issued as confirmation of submission.

5 Due Diligence: A four-tier due diligence process is conducted by the Residency Malta Agency to ensure your application’s validity.

6 Letter of Final Approval: The applicant received the letter of final approval, which means they have the green light to receive a residence permit.

7 Biometric data collection & residency card issuance: If approved, you must travel to Malta (along with any dependants included in the application) to submit your biometric data to the Agency. While the biometric data is tied to the issuance of a Malta residency card, it’s actually not a mandatory step in the process. In fact, these cards are only issued once the investment is made and all criteria have been fulfilled. Each Malta residency card is valid for five years, renewable after with the exception of minors turning 14 or 18 years. Minors approaching their 14th or 18th birthday will have a residency card valid up until a month before their birth date.

8 Annual Compliance: On a yearly basis, the Agency will be in communication with your agent, who’ll need to submit proof of your property lease, as well as proof of sickness insurance cover, via the presentation of the annual policy. This occurs each year for the first five years, and then whenever the Agency deems it necessary, at its discretion.

Investment Requirements

To apply for the program and obtain a Malta permanent resident card, the individual must make three qualifying investments. Concerning the real estate investment, there are two different investment options: investors can choose either between buying real estate or leasing it out with a rental agreement. Let’s take a look at each investment requirement in more detail.

1. Applicants must make a qualifying real estate investment, and can choose between:

OPTION A: Renting a property with a minimum annual rent of €10,000 in the South of Malta/ Gozo or €12,000 in the rest of Malta

OR

OPTION B: Purchasing a property that’s at least valued at €300,000 in the South of Malta/Gozo or €350,000 in the rest of Malta

Requirement: The title of the real estate purchase or lease must be held for at least five years and cannot be rented out or sublet in that time.

2. Applicants must make a non-refundable contribution of:

€28,000 if purchasing a property

OR

€58,000 if leasing or renting a property

Requirement: An extra contribution of  €7,500 is required for each additional adult dependant.

3. Applicants must donate €2,000 to a local NGO registered with the Commissioner of Voluntary Organisations.

Total Investment Costs

Property rental option: €120,000 over 5 years (save 10k if investing in South Malta/Gozo)

Property purchase option: €380,000 (save 50k if investing in South Malta/Gozo)

**IMPORTANT NOTICE**: The proof of your respective investment and contributions must be submitted within eight months of your pre-approval letter.

  Required Documents

Below we’ll cover the general documentation you’ll need in support of your residency application. Note that this is not an exhaustive list and that for the full documentation requirements, you access our document checklist here: The MPRP – Documents List

A final thing to flag here is that the Maltese government can change the documentation requirements at any point, and have full discretion to do so.

Supporting Documents:

  • Valid passport and birth certificates
  • Cover letter
  • Personal information for due diligence
  • Power of attorney with a verified agent
  • Medical report and questionnaire
  • Proof of source of funds and wealth (for main applicant only or benefactor)
  • Bank statements (for main applicant only or benefactor)
  • Evidence of business ownership or employment (for main applicant only or benefactor)

Important notice: As part of the application process, there’s a four-tier due diligence in place. Furthermore, to submit your application, you must do so via a Licensed Authorized Agent who will essentially act as your Power of Attorney. Note, that to increase your chances of a successful outcome, ensure you have all the documentation in place, as well as filed correctly (certified versus original).

Fees and Investment Costs

1. Property Lease Option

Rented Property

  • Property located in the South of Malta or Gozo- €10,000 per annum
  • Property situated in rest of Malta- €12,000 per annum

Administration fees:

Initial fee*: €10,000

Final fee**: €30,000

*must be paid within one month from submission of application.

**must be paid within 2 months from the issuance of the Letter of Approval in Principle

***additional fees may apply for extra dependents***

Government contribution

A cost of €58,000 for the following applicants:

  • Main applicant
  • Spouse
  • Children under 18
  • Children over 18 who are married and are primarily dependent on the aimn applicant
  • Children with special needs

A cost of €7,500 for the following applicants (note it’s per applicant)

  • Parent or grandparent of the Main Applicant
  • And/or spouse who is dependent on the main applicant

The contribution must be paid within eight months from receiving the Letter of Approval in Principle

Donation

Donation to a local NGO/organization of choice- €2,000

*Donations must be conducted after the Letter of Approval has been issued, proof of which must be submitted together with the final proofs pack. The licensed agent must ask for clearance from Residency Malta Agency with respect to the chosen NGO/organization of choice.

2. Property Purchase Option

Purchased Property

  • Property located in the South of Malta or Gozo- €300,000
  • Property situated in rest of Malta- €350,000

Administration fees

Initial fee*: €10,000

Final fee**: €30,000

*must be paid within one month from submission of application.

**must be paid within 2 months from the issuance of the Letter of Approval in Principle

***additional fees may apply for extra dependents***

Government contribution

A cost of €28,000 for the following applicants:

  • Main applicant
  • Spouse
  • Children under 18
  • Children over 18 who are married and are primarily dependent on the Main applicant
  • Children with special needs

A cost of €7,500 for the following applicants (note it’s per applicant)

  • Parent or grandparent of the Main Applicant

The contribution must be paid within eight months from receiving the Letter of Approval in Principle

Donation

Donation to a local NGO/organization of choice- €2,000

*Donations must be conducted after the Letter of Approval has been issued, proof of which must be submitted together with the final proofs pack. The licensed agent must ask for clearance from Residency Malta Agency with respect to the chosen NGO/organization of choice. Note, that these fees don’t include agent processing fees. 

Additional Dependants Fees – Post-Approval stage

The below fee schedule refers to additional dependants added after the certificate of residence for the Main Applicant has been issued.

Parent or grandparent of the Main Applicant or spouse who is principally

dependant on the Main Applicant

€7,500
Spouse of an already approved Main Applicant €7,500
Minor child of the Main Applicant or their approved spouse Free
Child of the Main Applicant and/or his spouse, born or adopted after the

certificate is issued

Free
Adult child of the Main Applicant or his approved spouse, who is over 18

years, not married and principally dependant on the Main Applicant

€5,000
Adult child of the Main Applicant or his approved spouse, who is over 18

years and who has been certified by a recognized medical professional or

authority as having a disability in terms of the Equal Opportunities (Persons

with Disability) Act

Free
Spouse of an already approved dependent child€7,500
Minor child, of an already approved dependant child and/or their already

approved spouse.

€5,000

All fees are per applicant and must be paid within 1 month from the submission of the application.

Can Maltese residency get me citizenship?

Malta’s residency by investment program is first and foremost, a route to Maltese residency, where you will have residency rights.. Under no circumstances can the program be treated as a pathway to citizenship. In fact, opting for Maltese residency by investment means that the applicant can only put in a citizenship request after ten to fifteen years.

If you’re interested in obtaining Maltese citizenship, you’ll be pleased to know there’s an investment program called Granting of Citizenship for Exceptional Services Regulations that offers non-EU nationals the opportunity to gain citizenship by naturalization. To qualify, you have to contribute to the country’s economic development, pass strict due diligence processes, and invest a minimum of €690,000.

For more information on citizenship by investment Malta, consult our Malta Citizenship By Investment guide here.

 

Take a look at our Malta Citizenship Ultimate Guide by local experts

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Speak to us today

Global Citizen Solutions is a boutique investment migration consultancy firm focused on finding the right residency or citizenship by investment program for individuals wishing to secure their future and become global citizens.

With offices in Portugal, the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, and Brazil, our multilingual team guides individuals and families from start to finish, providing expert advice considering freedom, mobility, taxation, and security.

From helping individuals find their dream homes or investment to providing successful immigration and relocation services, our international team is with you every step of the way.

FiIl in the contact form below and schedule a 30-minute complimentary call with one of our specialists and start your pathway to Maltese residency today.

Frequently Asked Questions About Malta Residency By Investment

What is the Malta Residency Visa Program?

The Malta Permanent Residence Program (MPRP) is a residency by investment program that enables successful individuals to obtain a Certificate of Maltese Residence, entitling them to reside in Malta with their family members indefinitely. The residency by investment program is ideal for high net worth individuals with enough capital assets looking to enhance their mobility and quality of life.

Who is eligible to apply for the Malta residency visa program?

Third-country nationals, non-EEA and non-Swiss nationals are eligible to apply for the Malta residency visa investment program. Note, there are additional requirements to pass, including but not limited to: be in possession of a clean criminal record, have enough financial resources to make the investment and live comfortably in Malta, not be deemed a security threat to Malta, to not be from a sanctioned country, and hold a valid travel document.

How do I become a resident of Malta?

Provided that you are eligible to apply for the investment program, to become a resident of Malta, you must appoint a licensed authorized agent to handle your application on your behalf, complete all the documentation requirements, make the respective investment, and maintain the said investment for five years as a prerequisite to keeping your residency status in Malta.

How much does it cost to get residency in Malta?

As there are two different real estate investment options to secure permanent residency, if the investor opts for the real estate rental option, it’ll cost the investor €120,000 over 5 years (you can save 10k if investing in South Malta/Gozo). Alternatively, if the investor goes for the real estate purchase option, it’ll cost the investor €380,000 (save 50k if investing in South Malta/Gozo).

Is it easy to get residency in Malta?

Getting residency in Malta isn’t considered ‘easy’. Rather, the Malta program is a respected, vigorous program with a four-tier due diligence process to ensure only high-caliber individuals and their family members are accepted into the residency program. The procedures in place are such to ensure only legitimate investors are welcomed into Malta and can gain permanent residency and residence rights.

What qualifies as a dependent on the application?

In the Malta residency by investment application, the following family dependents can be included on the application to gain a permanent residence permit: spouse or de facto partner (documents needed in the case of a de facto relationship), children under 18, including adopted children, children over 18 and under 29 who are completely or largely dependent on the main applicant or spouse, children over 18 and under 29 who are considered a person with a disability, a parent of the main investor or spouse who is over the age of 55 and who is completely or largely dependent on the main application or spouse.

What is the usual time residency by investment processing frame?

From onboarding to issuing the Malta residence certificate, the process takes, more or less, one year. This also is dependent on the investor and family members’ ability to travel to Malta for the biometrics. Any issues with the documents to the authorities in Malta will also stall the process, so it is important to have submitted the correct ones to gain Malta residence in the country quicker.

Do I need to show the source of funds for the investment?

Applicants to the Malta residency by investment program will have to show that they have sufficient funds to make the investment. The documents that you will need to present to authorities in Malta will vary, depending on the source of the investment funds.

What is the validity period of the residency certificate and the residence card?

For Malta permanent residence, residency cards are valid for five years and the card is renewable after this period. The exception is minors turning 14 or 18 years. Minors approaching their 14th or 18th birthday will have their residency cards valid up until a month before their birth date.