By Uglobal Staff
Russia is now just a step away from launching its own EU country-style Golden Visa scheme after a government committee gave its approval of a draft bill on permanent residency by investment for foreign investors.
The proposal to have a residency by investment option in Russia was initiated by the Russian Ministry of Economic Development in May last year while the government committee’s approval came in mid-April this year, according to the state-controlled Russian media outlet, RT.
The bill is now expected to be voted in the Russian parliament, where it is likely to be approved before becoming law. If all goes to plan, wealthy foreigners will have the option to get permanent residency in Russia as soon as this summer.
Eligible foreigners would have to prove that they have no criminal history and a certain knowledge of the Russian language.
There will be two investment options available under the proposed bill: first is the option to invest at least $130,000 in a Russian business or in government-issued bonds; if the investment is made in a sole business then at least 10 Russian nationals would have to be employed by the foreign investor. The minimum period of investment is expected to be three years.
The second option would be to invest at least $390,000 in a real estate property in Russia.
Among the benefits being listed for gaining Russian permanent residency via such an investment is the supposed appeal of low taxes on individual incomes and small businesses. Successful foreign applicants and their families would no longer need to apply for work permits anywhere in the country. Plus, apart from being taxed at the same level as Russian citizens, foreigners with permanent resident permits would get to utilize the same social services benefits as any other Russian citizen. While they may not get voting rights, they would be exempted from military service.
A huge factor that may hinder foreign investors to opt for the proposed Russian residency scheme, apart from the fact that other European destinations offer much cheaper options, is that foreigners would be required to reveal all their foreign bank accounts and assets in their applications.
Russian media outlets said while the scheme would be open to all foreigners, it is expected to attract wealthy clientele from China, Africa and the Middle East, particularly those from conflict zones.
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