Even though the Portugal Golden Visa programme has removed real estate from its list of qualifying investments, it still remains an unparalleled route to EU citizenship.


About the Portugal Golden Visa

Portugal is renowned for its rich cultural tapestry and breathtaking landscapes, complemented by a pleasant climate all year round. It stands out as an idyllic destination for living and working, welcoming foreign visitors with open arms. This European haven boasts excellent connectivity, an array of top-notch restaurants, a vibrant cultural scene, and a gentle climate, all set against the backdrop of a cosmopolitan coastline. Additionally, the widespread use of English makes it an even more appealing choice for those looking to establish a European base.

In 2012, Portugal introduced its Golden Visa Programme in a bid to attract foreign investment with the promise of EU residency in return for their economic contribution. Fast forward to 2023, and the Portuguese government has reshaped the popular programme. In a bid to ensure that locals were able to buy property in Portugal, the government has done away with real estate investment and is now only allowing investment funds as an option for the golden visa programme.

Benefits of the investment fund route to acquire citizenship

Even prior to this update, Sable International's Real Estate and Investment Migration division saw an increased interest in the investment fund option, partly due to its liquidity compared to the real-estate-focused programme. Should you face unforeseen circumstances or wish to alter your plans, you can liquidate your investment without any penalties within five days, avoiding any exit fees.

The investment fund identified by Sable International is essentially a balanced fund with a blend of strong Portuguese-listed equities and bonds that delivers a Euro-based return. With an ambitious annual return target of 5%, these funds have impressively outperformed expectations, achieving a 10.6% return over the last 30 months.

Opting for the fund route not only qualifies you for the Portugal Golden Visa, but also opens up the opportunity for you to gain citizenship, tap into a strong Euro investment, and enjoy returns in Euros. This approach provides a dual advantage, marrying the benefits of residency and financial investment.

Benefits of the Portugal Golden Visa

  • Minimal stay required: One of the programme's appealing features is the minimal physical presence requirement. You only need to spend an average of seven days per year in Portugal.
  • Bring your family along: You can include family members in your application, extending the benefits of the Golden Visa to your spouse, children and dependent family members.
  • Path to citizenship: After five years of maintaining the investment and fulfilling the residency requirements, you can apply for permanent residency and citizenship, subject to meeting certain criteria such as a basic proficiency in Portuguese.
  • Freedom of movement: As a residency card holder you can enjoy visa-free access throughout the Schengen area for leisure purposes.
  • No government contribution: 100% of your capital is invested into a qualifying investment fund.
  • Dual citizenship: Portugal does not impose restrictions on dual citizenship.

The revamped golden visa programme isn’t just an investment in your financial portfolio; it’s an excellent Plan B to get a second residency and citizenship without uprooting your whole life. However, if you do want to make the move, Portugal is a country with a rich cultural heritage, stunning landscapes, and welcoming shores.

For detailed and up-to-date information on the Portugal Golden Visa programme get in touch with our Real-Estate and Investment Migration team on im@sableinternational.com or give them a call on +27 (0) 21 657 1584. They can provide guidance tailored to individual circumstances and investment goals.

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