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2016
Dec

Taxation

Golden Residence Permit Programme

In an effort to attract foreign investment into Portugal, the Portuguese government has initiated the Golden Residence Permit Programme (also known as Golden Visa) to encourage 3rd party inhabitants to invest in Portugal. There are various methods possible as discussed in the article below, and meeting these requirements the government provides certain benefits to make this investment attractive.

As an estate agent, we prefer category 3 and 4. Category 4 is more difficult, because the number of available properties meeting these strict criteria are more difficult to meet, particularly outside of main urban areas. There has been a strong influx of Chinese residents because of the Golden Visa programme.

Residence Permit for Investment Activity (ARI / Golden Visa)

What is required

The rules governing the granting of Residence Permit for Investment (ARI / Golden Visa), are in force from 8 October 2012, and enable third-country nationals to obtain a temporary residence permit to conduct business activities with visa waiver to enter national Portuguese territory. The beneficiaries of ARI / Golden Visa are entitled to Residence visa waiver for entering Portugal.

Living and working in Portugal, on condition that they stay in Portugal for a period of 7 or more days, in the first year, and 14 or more days, in the subsequent years allow the following benefits:

  • Visa exemption for traveling within the Schengen Area;
  • Family reunification;
  • Applying for permanent residence (pursuant to the Aliens Act – Act number 23/2007 of 4 July with the current wording);
  • Applying for Portuguese citizenship, by naturalization, provided all other requirements set out by the Nationality Act are fulfilled (Act number 37/81 of 3 October, with the current wording);

Eligibility – Who may apply?

All third country citizens who conduct an investment activity, as an individual businessperson or through a company set up in Portugal or in another EU Member State and who, in addition, are stably settled in Portugal, provided these citizens fulfil the quantitative requirements and the time requirements set out by the relevant legislation, may apply for a Residence Permit for Investment, by one of the following Categories:

  1. Capital transfer with a value equal to or above 1 million Euros;
  2. The creation of at least 10 job positions;
  3. The purchase of real estate property with a value equal to or above 500 thousand Euros;
  4. The purchase of real estate property, with construction dating back more than 30 years or located in urban regeneration areas, for refurbishing, for a total value equal to or above 350 thousand Euros;
  5. Capital transfer with a value equal to or above 350 thousand Euros for investing in research activities conducted by public or private scientific research institutions involved in the national scientific or technologic system;
  6. Capital transfer with a value equal to or above 250 thousand Euros for investing in artistic output or supporting the arts, for reconstruction or refurbishment of the national heritage, through the local and central authorities, public institutions, public corporate sector, public foundations, private foundations of public interest, networked local authorities, local corporate sector organizations, local associations and public cultural associations, pursuing activities of artistic output, and reconstruction or maintenance of the national heritage;
  7. Capital transfer with a value equal to or above 500 thousand Euros, for purchasing shares in investment funds or in venture capital geared to capitalize small and medium companies that, in turn, must present a feasible capitalization plan.

Portuguese, EU and EEE nationals are not eligible for the ARI / Golden Visa scheme.

Should you be interested in further information about the Golden Visa Programme, please get in touch with us and we will put you in contact with a specialist who will guide you through the process.