Saint George’s, Grenada: The government of the United States of America has recently passed major legislation which will directly impact the people who buy citizenship of Grenada. The legislation passed will prevent investors from having instant access to USA E2 Visa.
The newly adopted policy by the US states that Grenadian passport holders have to stay in the country for around three years before becoming eligible to apply for an E2 Investment Visa.
It is worth noting that the Citizenship by Investment Programmes has proved to be one of the prime reasons for the revenue generation, especially in the Small Island Developing States like Grenada. According to various reports, CBI contributed to the collection of around XCD 24 million, whereas, in 2022, total revenue generated reached up to XCD 78 million. Along with this, the reports claimed that the government has anticipated collecting around XCD 240 million, which is approximately 20 percent of the 2023 budget.
However, it is expected that the government’s expectations will be ruined after the new announcement by the United States administration. Many sources have outlined that the decision by the US is terrible for the newly elected government, as the future viability of the CBI Programme of Grenada will be affected. Various economists have predicted that due to the new policy target of XCD 240 million will not be achieved and 2023 will be a tough year for the CBI industry of Grenada.
The investors opting for Grenadian passports enjoy many benefits, which are as follows:
• Investor visa allows one to work and enter the United States
• An investor may start a business in the USA
• Visa can be extended indefinitely
• E2 Visa is valid for three months to five years
• Spouse and children (under the age of 21) may be included in the visa application.
• The spouse can work anywhere in the US, and
• Children will be eligible to attain education.
Along with this, many reports had claimed that under the treaty agreement between Grenada and the United States of America, Grenada was the only country with the CBI Programme, which provided a privilege to apply for a US E2 visa, before the government of the US passed a new law in December 2022.
The passport holders of Grenada have the application rights as it is the only East Caribbean state which provides such a facility, but around 99 percent of the people who own the economic citizenship of Grenada do not reside in the country as permanent residents. As a result, the wide-open loophole closes effectively through such actions, and the CBI citizenship and passport purchases are expected to have a great impact in future.
In his remarks, Kenneth Rijock, an investigative blogger, noted that, even though the actions from America were particularly directed at the Russian organized crime figures, few of whom have purchased and invested in the CBI passports of Grenada, it is suspected as one of the reasons, but not entirely investigated.