By Moustafa Daly
Following its recent approval by the US Senate in December, the Amigos Act was finally signed into law by President Joe Biden, officially announcing Portugal as an E-2 treaty country and granting Portuguese citizens access to the popular non-immigrant investor visa, which gives successful applicants residency and work rights in the US for up to two years if they invest a substantial amount in the country.
With the Portuguese golden visa entailing a path to citizenship, the passing of the Amigos Acts could potentially increase the popularity of the country’s golden visa.
“With the approval of USA E-2 visa access, allowing Portuguese investors to develop investment activities in the USA, all the residence programs in Portugal including the Golden Visa will gain an extra value in the migration and succession planning of HNWIs and entrepreneurs, also impacting the Portuguese corporate and export sector,” recently explained Sara Sousa Rebolo from Portugal-based Prime Legal law firm to Uglobal.
On the other hand, the Amigos Act introduces limitations to E-2 visa eligibility: “If an alien who has never received an E visa became the national of an E visa-eligible foreign country by making a financial investment in that foreign country, that alien must have been domiciled in that foreign country for a continuous period of at least three years at any point before applying for an E visa,” reads the bill.
Experts and industry professionals expect this condition to have a negative impact on a number of citizenship-by-investment programs in many countries, most pronounced in Turkey and Grenada, for whom access to the E-2 visa is considered a main factor attracting investors to their programs.
Read more about the Amigos Act and its potential implications for different RCBI programs here.
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