Situated between Central and South America, Panama is one of the world’s biggest banking and business hubs. The country has a high-income economy and ranks 57th in the world as per the Human Development Index. Owing to the Panama Canal that connects the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, Panama offers various economic opportunities for foreign residents, giving them enhanced access to global markets.
Home to around 4.4 million people, the country boasts an advanced service-based economy. Panamanian passport holders have a pathway to the global goods market and are well-connected to other parts of the world. In this article, you will learn how to obtain a Panama passport, the advantages of being a Panamanian citizen, and more.
The Panama Residency by Investment Program
The government of Panama introduced the Panama Residency by Investment Program to attract more foreign investment in the country and further boost the steadily growing economy. As part of this program, foreign investors can obtain permanent residency and citizenship after five years in return for an investment in the country. Based on the investment option chosen, interested applicants can receive Panamanian residency in 30 days to six months. For instance, it will take around 30 days if you take the Qualified Investor route, whereas it will take around four to six months to get the visa if you apply under the Friendly Nations or Forestry Investor routes.
Advantages of Obtaining a Panamanian Investor Visa
Here are the top reasons to get a Panama Passport:
- Panamanian residents have the right to live, work or study in Panama, plus easy entry to important American markets.
- Panama is strategically located and is one of the most critical business and transport hubs in the world. The Panama Canal in the country provides easy transportation of goods. Panama City, the largest city in the country and the capital is not only a historical and cultural center but also an important business location.
- The country is well-connected to popular locations like Colombia, Ecuador, and Venezuela, ensuring more business opportunities with other countries.
- You can include your spouse, children under the age of 18, children between the age of 18-25 who are single, full-time students with no children, specially-abled children, and parents in your residency application.
Requirements for Panama Residency
There are three options available through which you can obtain a Panama Investor Visa. All you need to do is meet the following requirements to obtain residency in Panama.
Investment for residency
Under the Panama Investor Program, foreign investors can apply for Panamanian residency in return for a minimum investment. After obtaining residency, the candidate will be eligible to apply for Panama citizenship.
To maintain your permanent residency in Panama, you must sustain your investment for five years. In addition to your investment amount, you also need to pay additional fees for yourself and your dependents.
To make an investment in the country, you can invest through either of the following options.
- A minimum investment of US$300,000 in real estate
- A minimum investment of US$500,00 in the stock exchange
- Investment of US$750,000 in fixed-term deposits in the banking sector
Investment options for friendly nations
The Panama Friendly Nation Visa allows citizens of countries with friendly relations with Panama to apply for a special immigration program. If you are a citizen of one of Panama’s friendly countries, you can obtain residency and citizenship through the following options.
- A minimum investment of US$200,000 in real estate
- A fixed-term deposit of US$200,000
- Formal employment opportunity with a Panamanian company through a work permit
Here is a list of the Panama Friendly Nations:
- Costa Rica
- Czech Republic
- Hong Kong
- New Zealand
- San Marino
- South Africa
- South Korea
- United Kingdom
- United States
Investment option as an investor in forestry
As per the Reforestation Investor Visa of Panama, you are eligible to apply for temporary residency if you plan to invest in any government-certified reforestation projects.
You can obtain residency if you invest in a company with a forest registry with the Ministry of Environment. Make sure you meet one of the following requirements.
- A minimum investment of US$ 100,000
- A minimum investment of US$ 100,000 in teak reforestation. In this option, you will be granted a temporary residency of two years. Post-completion, you are eligible to apply for permanent residence.
- A minimum investment of US$ 350,000 in teak reforestation. Under this option, you are eligible to obtain permanent residence immediately.
Panama Passport Procedure
Interested applicants must note that citizenship by investment is not possible in Panama directly. But after completing five years of residency in Panama, residents can obtain a Panama passport. However, citizens of a few Latin American countries and Spain may also be eligible to obtain a Panama passport after one to three years.
Panama Visa-Free Countries
As per our Global Passport Index, which takes into account three critical factors – Enhanced Mobility, Investment Index, and Quality of Living Index, Panama ranks in the 68th position.
Panama passport holders can travel visa-free to 146 countries. We are sharing below a comprehensive list for your convenience.
- Albania -visa-free/90 days
- Andorra -visa-free/90 days
- Angola -pre-visa on arrival
- Antigua and Barbuda -visa-free/180 days
- Argentina -visa-free/90 days
- Armenia -visa on arrival / eVisa/120 days
- Austria -visa-free/90 days
- Azerbaijan -eVisa/30 days
- Bahamas -visa-free/90 days
- Bangladesh -visa on arrival/30 days
- Barbados -visa-free/28 days
- Belarus -visa-free/30 days
- Belgium -visa-free/90 days
- Belize -visa-free/30 days
- Bolivia -visa-free/90 days
- Bosnia and Herzegovina -visa-free/90 days
- Brazil -visa-free/90 days
- Bulgaria -visa-free/90 days
- Burundi -visa on arrival/30 days
- Cambodia -visa on arrival / eVisa/30 days
- Cape Verde -visa on arrival (EASE)
- Chile -visa-free/90 days
- Colombia -visa-free/90 days
- Comoros -visa on arrival/45 days
- Congo (Dem. Rep.) -eVisa/90 days
- Costa Rica -visa-free/90 days
- Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast) -pre-enrollment/90 days
- Croatia -visa-free/90 days
- Cuba -tourist card/30 days
- Cyprus -visa-free/90 days
- Czech Republic -visa-free/90 days
- Denmark -visa-free/90 days
- Djibouti -eVisa
- Dominica -visa-free/21 days
- Dominican Republic -visa-free
- Ecuador -visa-free/90 days
- Egypt -visa on arrival/30 days
- El Salvador -visa-free/90 days
- Estonia -visa-free/90 days
- Ethiopia -eVisa/90 days
- Finland -visa-free/90 days
- France -visa-free/90 days
- Gabon -eVisa/90 days
- Georgia -visa-free/360 days
- Germany -visa-free/90 days
- Greece -visa-free/90 days
- Guatemala -visa-free/90 days
- Guinea -eVisa/90 days
- Guyana -visa-free/90 days
- Honduras -visa-free/90 days
- Hong Kong -visa-free/30 days
- Hungary -visa-free/90 days
- Iceland -visa-free/90 days
- India -eVisa/30 days
- Iran -eVisa/30 days
- Ireland -visa-free/90 days
- Israel -visa-free/90 days
- Italy -visa-free/90 days
- Jamaica -visa-free/30 days
- Jordan -visa on arrival
- Kenya -eVisa/90 days
- Kosovo -visa-free/90 days
- Laos -visa on arrival / eVisa/30 days
- Latvia -visa-free/90 days
- Lebanon -visa on arrival/30 days
- Lesotho -eVisa/14 days
- Liechtenstein -visa-free/90 days
- Lithuania -visa-free/90 days
- Luxembourg -visa-free/90 days
- Macao -visa on arrival/30 days
- Madagascar -visa on arrival / eVisa/90 days
- Malawi -visa on arrival / eVisa/30 days
- Malaysia -visa-free/30 days
- Maldives -visa on arrival/30 days
- Malta -visa-free/90 days
- Mauritania -visa on arrival
- Mauritius -visa on arrival/60 days
- Mexico -visa-free/180 days
- Micronesia -visa-free/30 days
- Moldova –
- visa-free/90 days
- Monaco -visa-free/90 days
- Montenegro -visa-free/90 days
- Mozambique – visa on arrival / eVisa/30 days
- Nepal -visa on arrival/150 days
- Netherlands -visa-free/90 days
- Nicaragua -visa-free/90 days
- Nigeria -pre-visa on arrival
- North Macedonia -visa-free/90 days
- Norway -visa-free/90 days
- Palau -visa on arrival/30 days
- Palestinian Territories -visa-free
- Paraguay -visa-free/90 days
- Peru -visa-free/180 days
- Philippines -visa-free/30 days
- Poland -visa-free/90 days
- Portugal -visa-free/90 days
- Qatar -free visa on arrival/30 days
- Romania -visa-free/90 days
- Russian Federation – visa-free/90 days
- Rwanda – visa on arrival / eVisa/30 days
- Saint Kitts and Nevis -visa-free/90 days
- Saint Lucia – visa-free/42 days
- Samoa -visa on arrival/90 days
- San Marino -visa-free/90 days
- Seychelles -tourist registration/90 days
- Singapore -visa-free/30 days
- Slovakia -visa-free/90 days
- Slovenia -visa-free/90 days
- Somalia -visa on arrival/30 days
- South Africa -visa-free/90 days
- South Korea -eTA/90 days
- South Sudan -eVisa
- Spain -visa-free/90 days
- Sri Lanka -eTA/30 days
- St. Vincent and the Grenadines -visa-free/90 days
- Suriname -visa-free/90 days
- Sweden – visa-free/90 days
- Switzerland -visa-free/90 days
- Taiwan -eVisa/30 days
- Tanzania -visa on arrival / eVisa
- Timor-Leste -visa on arrival/30 days
- Togo -visa on arrival/15 days
- Trinidad and Tobago -visa-free/90 days
- Tuvalu -visa on arrival/30 days
- Türkiye -visa-free/90 days
- Uganda -eVisa
- Ukraine -visa-free/90 days
- United Kingdom -visa-free/180 days
- Uruguay- visa-free/90 days
- Uzbekistan -visa-free/30 days
- Vatican City -visa-free/90 days
- Vietnam -visa-free/90 days
- Zambia -visa on arrival / eVisa/90 days
- Zimbabwe -visa on arrival/90 days
To learn more about countries offering citizenship by investment, and other useful materials, you can read the following articles:
- Best Places to Retire in the World – All You Need to Know!
- Top 10 countries to retire abroad for Americans in 2023
- The Easiest Countries to Get Citizenship
How Global Citizen Solutions Can Help
Expats and foreign investors can encounter many difficulties when applying for a second passport, which is why it is worthwhile to have an expert on hand to provide personalized Panama citizenship assistance throughout the application process.
Our specialists can help you with the following:
- Minimize the visits you have to make to the designated country
- Have someone who works solely on your behalf
- Reduce the hassle associated with putting your application together
- Acquire insider knowledge from someone with years of experience in the market
Let’s get you moving forward in your quest to obtain a Panama passport. Get in touch with us to book a free consultation.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the process of Panama passport renewal?
You can get your Panamanian passport renewed within 20 days to a month. To renew your passport, you must be present at the General Consulate of Panama.
How strong is the Panama passport?
As per the Global Passport Index, Panama ranks in the 68th position. In terms of mobility, Panama ranks 69th, whereas, in terms of investment and quality of living, the country ranks 72nd and 80th, respectively.