You should definitely be aware of the complexity of the Greek administration in order to get a permit to build an apartment complex. A plot may have several issues, like archeological issues, forest issues (even if there isn't a single tree on it), building coverage issue (how many meters you can build caries a lot from area to area) and others. This means that you may face difficulties to get a permit and /or time schedule to start the works. Having said that, you can do business in Greece but with the caution to take at all steps the advice and help from a serious legal office that provides one-stop-shop services, undertaking full responsibility for all the procedure.
How do I establish a company to build apartments that meet the requirements of the Greek Golden Visa Program?
I own several successful real estate development companies in China. Recently the Greek Golden Visa Program has become more popular among Chinese investors. I was approached by a migration agency discussing a potential partnership to establish a company in Athens and build apartments qualified for the Golden Visa program. It sounds tempting but I have never done business in Greece before. What are some issues that I might be facing and what would the requirements be for these apartments?
You need to sign several documents in Greece and appoint a manager of the company. You certainly need to sign POA and appoint a lawyer and accountant too.
Some of the initial issues to be discussed is the formation of an SPV (special purpose vehicle), which we recommend to be a local company. Depending on where the funding will come from, we will need to justify the shareholder scheme, and project how you can get your profits back. The properties do not have strict requirements for the Golden Visa. Major requirement is that the end investor buys at least at 250,000 euros contract value.
It is a fact that the Greek program is very popular due to the competitive advantages and its low entry price. The basic requirement for obtaining a permanent resident permit for a third-country citizen is the purchase of a property of at least 250,000 euros. However, the establishment of a domestic preferably company (SPV), or alternatively a subsidiary of a foreign company, has a number of issues that you need to look after and ask for expert consultancy. Tax issues, best business structures, tax dividend issues, funding schemes and effective company structure are among the whole setup. It would be better to contact a consultancy company and mandate it to take over for your account the full package from a tax and legal aspect of setting up your company. In addition, a construction company should also take into account the current legislative framework of the country on construction and licensing issues. Several issues, like archeological issues, forest issues and building coverage issues, should be taken into consideration since the time for the implementation of the project is a critical factor for any business. Following the above, and given the Greek bureaucracy, you could proceed in expanding your business in Greece but under a careful schedule of all your steps, and with professional consultation and advice of dedicated consultants.