lisboa portugal cityIs the Portugal Golden Visa ending? The short answer is no. However, there have been important changes to the program. On 7 October 2023, new legislation came into force, ruling out real statement investment or capital transfer as a means to qualify.

For years, the Portugal Golden Visa program has been a popular option for non-EU citizens seeking residency in the country. Introduced in 2012 by the Portuguese government to attract foreign investment, the scheme has brought millions of euros in investment each year.

The Portuguese Golden Visa program grants residency to investors who meet certain criteria and is, to date, one of the most successful investment programs in Europe.

However, following a ministerial meeting held on 16 February 2023, the Portuguese government presented a package of measures to respond to various concerns within the scope of the housing policy in Portugal.

With this said, Portugal’s Golden Visa program is undergoing some significant changes but will not come to an end.

This article examines the latest Portuguese Golden Visa program announcements and their key implications for future investors.

Read on to discover:

  • Is the Portugal Golden Visa ending?
  • What are the most significant changes to the program?
  • When are the changes coming into effect?
  • What are the remaining investment options for the Golden Visa program?
  • The latest Portugal Golden Visa news

Is the Portugal Golden Visa ending?

No, Portugal is not stopping the Golden Visa program. However, major changes were made in October 2023 concerning what type of investment qualifies for the scheme: capital transfers and real estate investments, including residential and commercial real estate, are no longer eligible for the program.

In the sections below, we’ll discuss the eligible investments for the Portugal Golden Visa Program.

The “More Housing Law”

Previously, Portugal’s Golden Visa program allowed non-EU citizens to gain residency through property investments, contributing to rising property prices in the country.

However, on 6 October 2023, the “Mais Habitação Law” was published by the Portuguese Government. This law addressed Portugal’s housing crisis by introducing measures to increase the country’s housing availability and affordability.

The Mais Habitaçāo bill officially took effect on 7 October 2023, bringing changes to the Golden Visa program in Portugal. Issuing residence or Golden Visas based on acquiring real estate categories is no longer possible.

To learn more about the program changes, please refer to Portugal Golden Visa Changes, Updates & New Rules for 2024.

Portugal Golden Visa News 2024

Despite property investment no longer being an option, the Portuguese Golden Visa Program still has several attractive investment routes available

In 2024, the program is still processing Portuguese Golden Visa applications worldwide and granting residency by investment to individuals and their accompanying family members. Portugal’s Golden Visa program remains one of the most sought-after investment schemes globally. 

Renowned for its flexibility, stability, and access to the Schengen Area, the Portugal Golden Visa offers investors a pathway to a Portuguese residence permit through alternative investment routes such as job creation, research activities, venture capital funds, and cultural heritage preservation. This adaptability, coupled with Portugal’s favorable tax regime and high quality of life, makes the Golden Visa program appealing for individuals seeking residency in Europe.

Since the changes have been made, fund investments have gained traction as a popular way to qualify for the program. Learn more in our Golden Visa Investment Fund Guide.

New Social Investor Visa Portugal

The recently elected Portuguese Prime Minister, Luis Montenegro, announced an Action Plan for Migration on 3 June 2024 to transform Portugal’s immigration framework.

A notable change involves the Portugal Golden Visa introducing the New Residence Permit for Solidarity Investment, also known as the Social Golden Visa. This initiative aims to channel private capital into social investment for immigrant integration projects. 

This includes investments in reception infrastructure, integration projects, and support for vulnerable immigrants.

The Government views this residence-by-investment program as a tool for the Migration Plan and the “Build Portugal” Plan, suggesting a new Golden Visa option through investment in affordable housing projects.

While the specifics and timings of this new Golden Visa option are speculative, they seem promising yet potentially challenging in implementation and attracting significant investment, similar to the current Golden Visa cultural investment option.

Are previous Golden Visa applicants affected?

The program changes have no impact on Portugal Golden Visa applications made before the law change. If you’ve initiated or finalized your investment, you can still maintain your visa under the same terms you initially applied for. There will be no retroactive impact on your investment or your residency status.

Golden Visa Portugal Ending: The Future of the Program

Remaining Golden Visa investment routes

golden visa portugal routesThere are several capital transfer investment options and other investment pathways that remain for Golden Visa applications, such as:

  1. Venture Capital Fund Investment: Capital transfers of €500,000 or more for participation units in venture capital funds, as long as they are not directly or indirectly related to real estate
  2. Investment or donation in the arts or reconstruction of national heritage with a donation of at least €250,000 (Read: Portugal’s Cultural Production Golden Visa)
  3. Scientific Research: A contribution of at least €500,000 to technological or scientific research programs in Portugal.
  4. Creation of ten jobs: Creation and maintenance of ten jobs during the required period
  5. Share capital and job creation: Incorporation of a company or reinforcement of a company’s share capital, in either case with an investment of €500,000, combined with the creation of five permanent jobs or maintaining ten jobs (five of them permanent)

Golden Visa investment routes that are no longer available

  • A capital transfer in the amount of €1,500,000 or more is no longer accepted.
  • Real estate acquisition with a value of €500,000 or higher is prohibited.
  • Property investment for rehabilitation or restoration on listings at least 30 years old, with a total investment of €350,000 or more, is no longer an option.
  • Investing in real estate in low-density areas, €400,000 or €280,000, is no longer an option.
  • Investing in a real estate-related fund is no longer viable.

Important notes about the Golden Visa Program

In addition to the specified investment avenues, the main consequences of this legislation encompass:

  • Pending applications with AIMA (Foreigners and Borders Service) will be evaluated according to the laws at the time of submission.
  • The minimum residency requirement to maintain residence permits remains unchanged, at an average of seven days annually.
  • The renewal process for residence permits will continue to adhere to the original regulations.
  • Family reunification conditions for dependents remain consistent with primary application requirements.
  • Investment routes tied to real estate and capital transfers are no longer considered qualifying investments.
  • The law took effect on 7th October 2023, following its official publication in the Diário da República.

Portugal Golden Visa Suspended: Timeline of Events 2023

February 16th, 2023

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The Portuguese government announced a series of measures aimed at addressing the country’s housing problem. The Portuguese Prime Minister stated that the measures include changes to the Golden Visa program, as part of the said effort.


July 19th, 2023

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The Portuguese Parliament approved the final version of the Golden Visa legislation. They then presented it to the President for his approval.

August 21st, 2023

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The Portuguese President vetoed the package, sending it back to the Parliament to go under amendments before it could be passed.

October 7th, 2023

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The Mais Habitaçāo bill came into effect. It’s no longer possible to issue residence or Golden Visas based on the acquisition of real estate.

Additional Resources About the Portuguese Golden Visa

If you want to learn more about the Portugal Golden Visa application, make sure to read the following guides:

Golden Visa Portugal: How Global Citizen Solutions Can Help You

The Portugal Golden Visa program is not ending, but the option to invest in real estate is.

However, there are several attractive investment options available to you. If you have decided to apply for the investment visa, here’s what we can do for you:

  1. Firstly, our onboarding team can help you obtain your personal Portuguese tax number (known as a NIF) in 2 days. We can then open a Portuguese bank account or an escrow, which takes between 2 to 4 weeks.
  2. Alongside this, you will meet your immigration and legal team to discuss your personal and family circumstances and help you gather all the documents required for your application.
  3. Our investment teams will help you familiarize yourself with the market and assist you in understanding all the eligible options for the program, investment funds, donations to cultural projects and artistic production, investment in research activities, and more.

You’ll have three teams working in parallel to help you streamline your application while coordinating with each other. To provide you with an example, we will ensure that you won’t invest until all your documents and preparations are ready for your application to be viable and submitted.

Working with expert immigration lawyers can be greatly beneficial in times like these, and Global Citizen Solutions can ensure that your visa application process is smooth.

Start your application today and secure your Portugal Golden Visa. Click here to see how we can help you with your Golden Visa application.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Portugal Golden Visa Program Ending

What is the Portugal Golden Visa?

The Golden Visa in Portugal is a program that awards investors with residence permits in Portugal, provided that they make a qualifying investment in the country.

Is the Golden Visa Portugal ending?

The Portugal Golden Visa program will not come to an end. On 19 July 2023, the Portuguese parliament voted to restructure the program. The legislation has been passed.

Since October 2023, significant changes to what type of investment qualifies for the scheme have been implemented – namely, buying property are no longer eligible for the program.

When is Portuguese Golden Visa ending?

The Golden Visa program will not come to an end. There have been changes to what type of investment qualify for the scheme – namely, real estate investments are no longer eligible for the program.

Despite the recent developments, which remove direct and indirect real estate investments as avenues for residency, the Portugal Golden Visa remains popular among foreigners seeking residency in Europe.

What should investors do if they are currently in the process of obtaining a Portugal Golden Visa?

These new measures only apply to new applications. All applications that have already been filed, even if not yet pre-approved, are not affected by this change in the law. Under the Portuguese Constitution, a new law cannot have retroactive effects. AIMA (which replaced SEF as the Portuguese Immigration and Border Force) is obliged to follow current Golden Visa legislation. This is why it is business as usual, and you can still apply for the Golden Visa.

How long do investors have to invest in real estate under the Golden Visa? 

According to the latest news on Portugal’s Golden Visa application process news, investors can no longer opt for the real estate investment option when applying.

Can I still apply for the Portugal Golden Visa?

Yes, you can still apply for Portugal’s Golden Visa. However, you cannot make a property investment or make a capital transfer in exchange for Portuguese citizenship.

Contact the team at Global Citizen Solutions, who can help with your application process.

Will previous or current Golden Visa holders be affected by the program’s changes?

The changes will not affect individuals who submitted the Golden Visa application before October 6, 2023. They will not face retroactive changes to their residency status or investment.

Will there be a new investment program to replace the Portugal Golden Visa program?

The Portugal Golden Visa will not end. However, the new law ruled out capital transfers and buying real estate property as eligible investment options. The qualifying investment types are job creation, company setup, artistic or cultural heritage preservation project donation, and fund investments.

Can there be retroactive effects?

Under the Portuguese Constitution, a new law cannot have retroactive effects.

What is the alternative to the Golden Visa in Portugal?

There are several alternatives to the Golden Visa in Portugal for those who want to establish residency in the country. If you have passive income, you can apply for the D7 Passive Income Visa (sometimes known as the Retirement Visa). If you are a remote worker, you can consider the D8 Digital Nomad Visa. The main difference between this visa and the Golden Visa is that they have much more stringent residency requirements.

Which Portugal Golden Visa investments are no longer available?

Golden Visa investment routes that are no longer available

  • Capital transfers for €1,500,000 or more.
  • Purchasing real estate.
  • Investing in rehabilitating real estate properties.
  • Investing in real estate in low-density areas.
  • Investing in a real estate-related fund.

What is the SEF and how does it relate to Portugal residency visas?

SEF (Serviço de Estrangeiros e Fronteiras) was Portugal’s Immigration and Borders Service but has since been replaced by the Agency for Integration, Migration and Asylum, AIMA for short. This official body is designed to address and streamline immigration services such as residency visas and citizenship applications.

What is the minimum investment required for a Portugal Golden Visa?

The minimum investment required is dependent on the investment route you choose:

  1. Venture Capital Funds – Capital transfers of €500,000.
  2. Arts or reconstruction of national heritage – with a donation of at least €250,000
  3. Scientific or technology research –  at least €500,000
  4. Share capital and job creation – Incorporating or increasing a company’s share capital by investing €500,000

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