This article first appeared in the March 2018 issue of the Newsletter of the Immigration and Nationality Law Committee of the Legal Practice Division of the International Bar Association (Vol 22, No 1) and is reproduced by kind permission of the International Bar Association, London, UK. © International Bar Association.
New Zealand immigration by investment
New Zealand continues to offer a viable investor category at two levels: NZ$10 million (US $7.3m) with no age restriction and a very light presence requirement during the investment and then an indefinite status. The second option is age-restricted requires business experience but the investment can be as low as NZ$2.5m (US$1.825m) but has a more onerous presence requirement during the investment.
Investor 1 and Investor 2: Residence categories
Whereas a number of jurisdictions have closed or restricted (passive) investment categories, New Zealand’s policies have been enhanced during 2017.
A competitive point in favour of New Zealand’s Investor Categories is that they are residence categories. When the visa is granted, it is not a temporary entry visa but a Temporary Residence visa, with conditions. The investment requirements must be completed. In the case of Investor 1, this is for three years and in the case of Investor 2, this is for four years. At the end of the investment period and provided that the presence requirement imposed on the principal applicant is met, the whole family will have permanent residence without any further presence requirement in New Zealand, at any time in the future.
Unlike most of the policies in other competing jurisdictions, the golden carriage does not turn into a pumpkin at some future point at the strike of the midnight hour (four or five years later). This makes New Zealand’s Investor 1 Category in particular quite popular. It is also the one factor that is not understood.
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