Malta Citizenship by Naturalisation for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment – helping Maltese Citizens

Background

In 2020 the Maltese government updated the citizenship legislation relating to citizenship by; birth, registration, naturalisation, dual and multiple citizenships, and exceptional services by direct investment.

A new residency route which can lead to Citizenship in Malta, was the outcome.

What are the Details of this New Residency Route?

  • ‘Maltese Citizenship by Naturalisation for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment,’ provides foreign individuals and their families, who contribute to the economic development of Malta, a route to become citizens of Malta.

Malta is a member of the European Union as well as a Schengen Member State, and its citizens can travel, live, work, study and set up business in any of the member countries, with visa-free travel rights to more than 180 countries.

Community Malta Agency (‘Agency’), is the authorised Maltese Government Agency responsible for administering the processing of all applications leading to Maltese Citizenship.

What are the Criteria?

To apply for Maltese Citizenship by Naturalisation for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment, an applicant needs; to invest in the Maltese economy directly, make a donation and hold residential property.

Direct Investment

Applicants, who can prove residency status in Malta for 36 months, prior to the naturalisation, are required to make a direct investment of €600,000. Whilst applicants who can prove residency status in Malta for at least 12 months, prior to naturalisation, are required to make a direct investment of €750,000.

If the applicant is accompanied by qualifying dependants, a further investment of €50,000 per dependant needs to be made. 

An applicant cannot apply for a certificate of citizenship by naturalisation for exceptional services, before he/she has proved that he/she has become a resident of Malta for the minimum period required.

Philanthropic Nature of Direct Investment

Prior to the issue of a certificate of Maltese citizenship, the applicant must donate a minimum €10,000 to a registered philanthropic, cultural, sport, scientific, animal welfare or artistic non-governmental organisation or society, or as otherwise approved by the Agency.

In addition, the main direct investment made by each applicant will be used by the Government to finance projects coordinated by The National Development and Social Fund, across Malta.

Projects that Benefit from The National Development and Social Fund

The National Development and Social Fund agency (‘Fund’) was established to manage and administer 70% of the contributions received from the Individual Investor Programme of the Republic of Malta, set up under the Malta Citizenship Act Cap.188.

The Fund’s mission is to; contribute towards, promote and support significant projects and initiatives of national importance and of public interest, which are intended to develop and improve the economy, public services, and the general well-being of present and future generations.

Between July 2018 and June 2019, the total contributions, including property purchases, rents, and investments, collected through the Programme amounted to more than €271 million. This equates to approximately 2.11% of Malta’s GDP in the same period. The total amount collected, since the changes implemented in the 2020 citizenship legislation, exceed €930 million. Of these funds, approximately €515 million have been allocated to the National Development and Social Fund.

More Details about the Projects

The fund has invested in the following projects:

  • €10 million to upgrade eight health centres and 54 clinics. Previously, the Fund awarded a grant of €950,000 to Mater Dei Hospital’s Cardiology Department to upgrade its two catheterisation suites, and €5 million to Puttinu Cares to purchase apartments for cancer patients and their families in London.
  • In Feb 2019, a memorandum was signed to commit €50 million towards a social housing project. Five hundred new social housing units to be built, across 22 different sites. These sites are spread over 12 localities; Paola, Kirkop, Rabat, Żabbar, Mellieħa, Luqa, Żurrieq, Żebbuġ, Qormi, Siġġiewi, Qrendi and Marsascala.
  • In Ħamrun, a planned roof garden of around 500m2, with more than 2,500 trees, shrubs and plants including mature carob, olive and oak trees, will be featured in the square. This garden will absorb around 900 kilograms of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, whilst producing 660 kilograms of oxygen.
  • Other investments allocated by the Fund include;  €1.5 million for Caritas, a €1.5 million investment in artistic heritage, and €3.5 million in Urban Green projects.

In 2020, the Fund received €27.8 million from Community Malta Agency, with the total proceeds received from inception being €599.8 million.

Investment in Education

An agreement was signed at the Wardija Resource Centre, part of the Maria Regina College, offering special education beyond the compulsory school age. With an investment of around €40,000, teaching will take place in a multisensory room, where skills related to students’ senses will be developed.

In addition, in collaboration with the University of Malta, a new garden will be planted to create a habitat for endemic butterflies and to enhance their reproduction chances. Another section is to have an apiary where students can learn and enjoy their free time.

At St Paul’s Bay’s Primary School, a room dedicated to creativity and innovation will be launched with an investment of €35,000. Teaching will be undertaken in interdisciplinary ways, mixing; science, technology, engineering, and the arts to increase students’ scientific, literacy and critical thinking.

Finally, at Naxxar’s Senior School, an investment of around €30,000 will be used for new curtains and a mechanised projector for the school’s stage. This is to encourage students to participate in visual and artistic activities, as this will help them learn to think creatively and develop critical thinking, which can be applied in all areas of learning.

Quota for the New Residency Route

It is important to be aware that a maximum quota of 400 applicants per year has been set, with a total maximum number of applicants set at 1,500, for the entire scheme.

Additional Information

If you would like further information regarding Maltese Citizenship by Naturalisation for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment, please contact the Dixcart office in Malta: advice.malta@dixcart.com or your usual Dixcart contact.

Dixcart Management Malta Limited Licence Number: AKM-DIXC-22

Malta Nomad Residence: An Opportunity to Live and Work from a Sunny Mediterranean Island

Malta – Attractive Residence Programmes and Tax Benefits for Expatriates

Digital Nomads – the Background

Digital nomads are remote workers who travel to different locations regularly. They use modern technology to work from coffee shops, hotels, co-working spaces, or libraries with a Wi-Fi-connected laptop or smartphone from anywhere in the world.

Digital nomads tend to be freelancers or entrepreneurs who are self-employed, working for themselves or for companies as independent contractors.

In the past it has been difficult for entrepreneurs and freelancers to apply for traditional visas as either a contract with a local entity was required, or a letter of invitation. A tourist visa, for example, is not suitable as the individual might want to stay for a more extended period.

The Malta Nomad Residence Permit

The Malta Nomad Residence Permit can easily be obtained by; remote workers, digital nomads, and freelancers and it grants the holder a legal right to reside in Malta and travel visa free throughout the Schengen Member States.

About Malta

Malta has long been famous for its expat-friendly environment, which is well illustrated by the large expat community in Malta. Thanks to its favourable legislative system and tax benefits, the island is home to many foreign companies.

It is a small country in size but has a cosmopolitan soul. There are many cafes, bars, restaurants, and co-working spaces that make life easier for digital nomads. In addition, it is now one of the very few countries in the world with 5G nationwide coverage.

Along with its digital nomad-friendly environment, it also has everything an ideal island would have; beaches, 300 sunny days a year, a relaxed way of life, excellent seafood, and a lot of fun. Malta has it all and is a perfect base for remote working.

Eligibility Criteria for Malta Nomad Residence Permit

There is a specific set of rules for the program.

Applicants must:

  • Be a third-country national (non-EU)
  • Have a monthly income of €2,700 (gross of tax) for a single applicant
  • Have a work contract for an employer that is registered in a country other than Malta, OR
  • Be a partner/shareholder in a company that is registered in a country other than Malta, OR
  • Offer freelance services to clients whose permanent establishments are in  countries other than Malta, and with whom the applicant has a contract(s)
  • Have a valid travel document
  • Have health insurance covering Malta
  • Present a property rental or property purchase agreement

Cost of Application and Timeframe for Malta Nomad Residence Permit

The government fee for the main applicant is €328, with an additional €328 fee payable for each family applicant.

Applicants who intend to spend up to 180 days in Malta will be issued with a National Visa, while those who plan to spend up to 365 days or more will be issued with a Residence Permit.

Processing applications takes approximately 30 days, from receipt of all the required documentation and application forms.

Which Family Members can be Included?

The main applicant can include dependent family members. It is possible to add a spouse and minor children, as well as adults who are financially dependent on the main applicant.

Malta recognizes same-sex unions. A same-sex partner in a committed relationship for a defined period, can be included in an application.

Applicable Taxes

Nomad residence permit holders are not subject to personal income tax as they are  expected to pay tax in their country of origin. However, nomad residence permit holders will be subject to consumption tax (VAT) in the same manner as all Malta residents. 

How Can Dixcart Assist?

If you would like further information regarding Malta Nomad Residence Permit, please speak to Jonathan Vassallo: advice.malta@dixcart.com, at the Dixcart office in Malta or to your usual Dixcart contact.

Dixcart Management Malta Limited Licence Number: AKM-DIXC-22

How are the Malta Permanent Residence Programme and the Global Residence Programme Different?

There are several residence programmes available in Malta aimed at non-EU/EEA nationals to obtain residence status in Malta. The various programmes range from those intended to obtain a permanent residence status to programmes giving a special tax and temporary residence status.

In Malta the two most popular residency routes are the Malta Permanent Residence Programme (MPRP) and the Malta Global Residence Programme (GRP).

Malta Permanent Residence Programme (MPRP)

The MPRP is open to all third-country, non-EEA and non-Swiss nationals, with a stable income from outside Malta sufficient to maintain themselves and their dependants with adequate financial resources. 

Once applicants have successfully completed the application process with Malta Residence Agency who run the programme, they receive an e-Residence card that entitles them to live in Malta and travel visa-free throughout the Schengen Member States. More information about the MPRP program can be found here: Malta Permanent Residence Programme.

Malta Global Residence Programme (GRP) 

GRP is available to non-EU passport holders. The Global Residence Programme entitles non-EU nationals to obtain a Maltese residence permit, renewable annually, through a minimum investment in property in Malta and by paying a minimum annual tax. Individuals who are EU/EEA/Swiss nationals please see: Malta Global Residence Programme which operate on the same basis as the GRP.

The Main Difference

The main difference between the Global Residence Programme (GRP) and Malta Permanent Residence Programme (MPRP), is that the GRP does not offer permanent residence rights. A special tax status leads to an annual residency permit, whilst the MPRP offers permanent residence in Malta. 

Residence Status Explained

Residence status obtained under the MPRP is valid for life (provided that the requirements of the programme are still being met), whilst the residence status obtained under the GRP is renewed annually subject to paying an annual tax.

Annual Tax:

  • Under the GRP, a beneficiary must pay a minimum annual tax of €15,000.
  • Under the MPRP, there is a minimum annual tax of €5,000 if the person is ordinarily resident in Malta, or zero tax if the person is not ordinarily  resident in Malta. In both cases the tax rate on income remitted to Malta is a flat 35%.

Comparison of Programs: GRP and MRVP 

ConditionsGlobal Residence ProgrammeMalta Permanent Residence Programme
Financial requirements Not specifically defined, but an individual should have sufficient resources to sustain himself and his dependants, without any recourse to social assistance in Malta.No less than €500,000 in all assets (€150,000 of which should be in financial assets – for the first 5 years).
I. Option. Purchase a property with a minimum value ofCentral/North Malta: €275,000 South Malta/Gozo: €220,000Central/North Malta: €350,000 South Malta/Gozo: €300,000
II. Option. Rent a property with a minimum value Central/North Malta: €9,600 South Malta/Gozo: €8,750Central/North Malta: €12,000 South Malta/Gozo: €10,000
Minimum annual tax€15,000 per yearFrom €5,000 per year, if ordinarily resident **
 Tax rate15%: Foreign Source Income remitted to Malta 35%: Local Source IncomeIf ordinarily resident: 0% – 35%**
Registration procedureApplication Fee + Property + Annual TaxApplication Fee + Contribution + Property + Charity
Application process3-6 months4-6 months
Official application fee€6,0001. Application Fee: €10,000 due within one month of submission 2. Letter of Approval: €30,000 due within two months of submission 3. 8 months to conclude the due diligence and a contribution of: €28,000 or €58,000 needs to be paid
DependantsSpouse, Children up to 18 or adult children between 18 and 25 years old, including adopted children, provided that such children are not economically active and are financially dependent on the main applicant. Financially dependent parents.Allowing 4 generations to be included in one application: spouse, children – regardless of age can be included in the application if they are unmarried and financially dependent, parents and grandparents if they are principally and financially dependent on the main applicant.
Donation to a Non-Government OrganisationNot applicable€2,000
Additional CriteriaApplicant must not spend more than 183 days in any other jurisdiction in any single calendar year.An additional €7,500 payment per person is required for each adult dependant included in the application.
Duration of status in MaltaOne calendar year. Need to re-submit on an annual basis.Permanent Status: a Malta residence card is issued for all family members for 5 years, then renewed without any additional contribution, if the requirements of the programme continue to be met.
Schengen Access (26 European countries)Right to travel within the Schengen Area for 90 days in any 180 days.Right to travel within the Schengen Area for 90 days in any 180 days.

** Annual minimum tax under the Permanent Residence Programme is Zero if you are not ordinarily resident in Malta. If you select to be ordinarily resident in Malta, then the annual minimum tax is €5,000.

How Can Dixcart Help?

Any individual interested in applying for one of these programmes is required to do so through a registered approved agent.

Dixcart is an authorised agent and offers a bespoke service. We will be by your side throughout the process from completing the required documents to meetings with the various Maltese Authorities.  We can support you in choosing the best residential programme in Malta for you and your family.

Additional Information

If you would like further information regarding MPRP or GRP in Malta, please speak to Jonathan Vassallo: advice.malta@dixcart.com, at the Dixcart office in Malta or to your usual Dixcart contact.

Dixcart Management Malta Limited Licence Number: AKM-DIXC-22

Malta Residence and Visa Programme: Key Defining Features

Malta – Attractive Residence Programmes and Tax Benefits for Expatriates

The New Permanent Residence Programme came into effect at the end of March 2021.

What are the Key Defining Features of the Malta Permanent Residence Programme?

The Malta Permanent Residence Programme (MPRP) is open to all third country, non-EEA, and non-Swiss nationals, with sufficient financial resources.  

Once the application process has been successfully completed by ‘Residency Malta Agency’, applicants receive permanent residency immediately and an ‘eResidence’ card, that entitles them to live in Malta and to travel visa free throughout the Schengen Member States.

Features that set the MPRP apart from other programmes, include:

  • There is no need to learn Maltese as there is no language test to obtain Permanent Residence.
  • English is an official language in Malta so all documents and government interactions will be in English.
  • Permanent Residence is granted on successful completion of the application
  • There are no minimum days to be spent in Malta.
  • Children, regardless of age, can be included in the application, as long as they are unmarried and principally dependant on the main applicant.
  • Dependant parents and grandparents may also be included in the application, effectively allowing 4 generations to be included in one application.
  • Children born or adopted by the main applicant after the application approval date can also be included.

Requirements

An individual will need to make an investment consisting of the following:

  • Physical Address in Malta
    • Purchase a property with a minimum value of €350,000, reduced to €300,000 if the property is situated in the South of Malta or Gozo, or
    • Rent a property, with a minimum rental cost of €12,000 per annum, reduced to €10,000 per annum if the property is situated in the neighbouring island Gozo or in the South of Malta.

AND

  • Pay the non-refundable administration fee of €40,000

AND

  • Make one-off Government contributions, as follows:
    • €58,000 – if the applicant rents a property, or
    • €28,000 – if the applicant buys a qualifying property and
    • An extra €7,500 per additional adult dependant (where applicable). This applies whether the applicant is buying or renting a property.

AND

  • Donate a minimum amount of €2,000 to an NGO.

Payment timeframe:

  • Initial Administration fee of €10,000
    • Due within one month of the application submission
    • Letter of approval, remainder of the Administration fee of €30,000
      • Due within two months of the application submission
    • 8 months to provide all due diligence and the payment of the Government contribution of either €28,000 or €58,000, to be paid.

The main applicant should have at least €500,000 of net assets in order to qualify for the programme, and €150,000 of the €500,000 must consist of financial assets. The financial assets, however, only have to be maintained for the first 5 years. The capital requirement of €500,000 will remain in force for as long as the individual wishes to remain on the programme.

Finally, health insurance only needs to cover Malta, not all EU countries. This may result in an annual reduction in the insurance premium.

Remittance Basis of Taxation

Individuals taking advantage of the above programme will be taxed on Malta source income and certain gains arising in Malta. Individuals will not be taxed on non-Malta source income not remitted to Malta.

In addition, individuals will not be taxed on capital gains, even if this income is remitted to Malta. 

There is an annual minimum tax of €5,000 per annum, for individuals that are Malta tax resident.

How Dixcart Can Help?

Individuals interested in applying for the MPRP programme must do so through a registered approved agent. Dixcart is an approved agent, and offers a bespoke service to guide clients, every step of the way, through the MPRP process.

Additional Information

If you would like further information regarding MRVP in Malta, please speak to Jonathan Vassallo: advice.malta@dixcart.com, at the Dixcart office in Malta or to your usual Dixcart contact.

Dixcart Management Malta Limited Licence Number: AKM-DIXC-22

Introduction to Katrien de Poorter and Henno Kotze – Members of our DDL Team

Each of the Dixcart offices has a Dixcart Domiciles Team, providing advice regarding residence and/or citizenship programmes, and information on a number of tax efficient solutions that might be available.

Katrien de Poorter from our Cyprus office and Henno Kotze from our Dixcart office in Malta, are the two members of the team we are introducing to you today.

Dixcart Domiciles

Individuals and their families are becoming increasingly mobile, and Dixcart Domiciles, a business sector within Dixcart, specialises in residence and citizenship.

A number of countries offer attractive residence schemes and certain programmes offer the additional advantage of a passport.

Dixcart Domiciles offers specialist advice regarding various residence programmes around the world. We can help you discover the best country and programme for you and your family and provide advice on a number of tax efficient solutions that might be available. Dixcart Domiciles has its own website, which covers the programmes, the benefits, and financial obligations of each country in further detail.

Introduction to Katrien de Poorter and Henno Kotze

Katrien has been working in the fiduciary and wealth management sector since moving to Cyprus, as well as previously in in the United Arab Emirates. She also has close ties to other countries in the Middle East and  to Switzerland.

Henno was appointed Director of Dixcart Management Malta in 2018. He heads up the business development team, tasked with the continued expansion of this office and the promotion of Dixcart professional services available across the Group.

Katrien de Poorter

katrien.depoorter@dixcart.com

Katrien de Poorter has international experience in providing solutions to European and international clients and has a detailed understanding of the Cyprus Permanent Residence Programme which is available to non-EU nationals seeking to move to Cyprus.

Katrien advises clients on all aspects of relocating to Cyprus, including how to benefit from the advantageous non-domicile tax regime and the additional tax incentives that are available to Cypriot residents. Katrien also has experience in establishing and managing Cypriot companies once relocation has taken place, as a depth of knowledge regarding the establishment of Foreign Interest Companies allowing non-EU nationals to establish themselves in Cyprus.

Since moving to Cyprus, herself, she is able to draw on her own experiences in relocating to Cyprus, when advising clients embarking on the same journey, and is able to provide additional information on what it is like to live and work in Cyprus.

Henno Kotze

Henno Kotze

henno.kotze@dixcart.com

Director – Dixcart Management Malta Limited

Henno Kotze has expertise in providing international solutions to companies and individuals from several countries around the world and has a detailed understanding of the attractive residence programmes and tax regimes available to non-domiciled individuals in Malta.

Malta offers several residence and citizenship programmes and Henno has an in-depth knowledge of each of the programmes, including the benefits and financial obligations. He also specialises in international tax planning and structuring, establishing and managing Maltese companies, and has expertise regarding yachting and online gaming in Malta, as well as VAT.

Since joining Dixcart, Henno has advised many businesses relocating to Malta and has assisted a portfolio of clients wishing to obtain Maltese citizenship. He is on hand to meet clients in Malta, provide advice regarding the country and areas to live, assist with the documentation and application process of each programme, and advise on the legal aspects of relocating.

Cyprus, Malta, and Portugal – Three of the Best Southern European Countries to Live in

Moving to Guernsey – The Potential Tax Efficiencies

There are many reasons why individuals and their families choose to take up residence in another country. They may wish to start a new life elsewhere in a more attractive and relaxing environment, or they may find the greater political and economic stability that another country offers, of appeal. Whatever the reason is, it is crucial to research and plan ahead, as much as possible.

Residence programmes vary in what they offer and, depending on the country, there are differences regarding how to apply, the time period that residence is valid for, what the benefits are, tax obligations, and how to apply for citizenship.

For individuals considering an alternative country of residence, the most important decision is where they and their family would like to live. It is critical that clients consider the long-term objectives for themselves, and their families, before applying for a particular residence (and/or citizenship programme), to help ensure that the decision is right for now, and in the future.

The main question is: where would you and your family most like to live? The second, and almost equally important question is – what are you hoping to achieve?

CYPRUS

Cyprus has rapidly become one of Europe’s top hotspots for expatriates. If you are considering relocating, and are a bit of a sun-chaser, Cyprus should be top of your list. The island offers a warm climate, good infrastructure, convenient geographic location, membership of the EU, tax advantages for companies, and incentives for individuals. Cyprus also offers an excellent private healthcare sector, a high quality of education, a peaceful and friendly community, and a low cost of living.

On top of that, individuals are drawn to the island due to its advantageous non-domicile tax regime, whereby Cypriot non-domiciliaries benefit from a zero rate of tax on interest and dividends. These zero tax benefits are enjoyed even if the income has a Cyprus source or is remitted to Cyprus. There are several other tax advantages, including a low rate of tax on foreign pensions, and there are no wealth or inheritance taxes in Cyprus.

Individuals wishing to move to Cyprus can apply for a Permanent Residence Permit which is useful as a means to ease travel to EU countries and organise business activities in Europe. Applicants can make an investment of at least €300,000 in one of the investment categories required under the programme, and prove they have an annual income of at least €30,000 (which can be from pensions, overseas employment, interest on fixed deposits, or rental income from abroad) in order to apply for permanent residence. If they choose to reside in Cyprus for seven years, in any ten-calendar year period, they may be eligible to apply for Cyprus citizenship by naturalisation.

Alternatively, a temporary residence permit can be obtained by establishing a foreign investment company (FIC). This kind of international company can obtain work permits for relevant employees and residence permits for family members. Again, a key advantage is that after residing for seven years in Cyprus, within any ten-calendar year period, third country nationals can apply for Cyprus citizenship.

Find out more: Benefits, Financial Obligations, and Additional Criteria of the Cyprus Permanent Residence Permit


MALTA

Located in the Mediterranean, just south of Sicily, Malta offers all of the advantage of being a full member of the EU and Schengen Member States, has English as one of its two official languages, and a climate many chase all year round. Malta is also very well connected with most of the international airlines, which makes travel to and from Malta seamless.

Malta is unique in that it offers 8 residence programmes to meet different individual circumstances. Some are appropriate for non-EU individuals while others provide an incentive for EU residents to move to Malta. From the Malta Permanent Residence Programme, which offers a fast and efficient way for individuals to obtain a European permanent residence permit and visa-free travel within the Schengen Area, the Digital Nomad Residence Permit for third country individuals to legally reside in Malta but maintain their current job remotely, the Highly Qualified Person’s Programme, targeted towards attracting professional individuals earning over a certain amount each year offering a flat tax of 15%, to Malta’s Retirement Programme. It should be noted that none of the Malta residence programmes have any language test requirements – the Malta Government has thought of everyone.

  1. Malta Permanent Residence Programme – open to all third country, non-EEA, and non-Swiss nationals with a stable income and sufficient financial resources.
  2. Malta Residence Programme – available to EU, EEA, and Swiss nationals and offers a special Malta tax status, through a minimum investment in property in Malta and an annual minimum tax of €15,000
  3. Malta Global Residence Programme – available to non-EU nationals offers a special Malta tax status, through a minimum investment in property in Malta and an annual minimum tax of €15,000
  4. Malta Citizenship by Naturalisation for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment – a residence programme for foreign individuals and their families, who contribute to the economic development of Malta, which can lead to citizenship
  5. Malta Key Employee Initiative – is a fast track work permit application programme, applicable to managerial and/or highly-technical professionals with relevant qualifications or adequate experience relating to a specific job.
  6. The Malta Highly Qualified Persons Programme – available to EU nationals for five years (may be renewed up to 2 times, 15 years in total) and non-EU nationals for four years (may be renewed up to 2 times, 12 years in total). This programme is targeted at professional individuals earning more than €86,938 in 2021, and seeking to work in Malta in certain industries
  7. The Qualifying Employment in Innovation & Creativity Scheme – targeted towards professional individuals earning over €52,000 per annum and employed in Malta on a contractual basis at a qualifying employer.
  8. Digital Nomad Residence Permit – targeted at individuals who wish to maintain their current job in another country, but legally reside in Malta and work remotely.
  9. Malta Retirement Programme – available to individuals whose main source of income is their pensions, paying an annual minimum tax of €7,500

To make life even more enjoyable Malta offers tax benefits to expatriates and the attractive Remittance Basis of Taxation, whereby a resident non-domiciled individual is only taxed on foreign income, if this income is remitted to Malta or is earned or arises in Malta.

Find out more: A Snapshot of Malta’s Extensive Residence Programmes


PORTUGAL

Portugal, as a destination to relocate to, has been top of the list for several years now, with individuals attracted by the lifestyle, the Non-Habitual Resident Tax Regime, and the Golden Visa residency programme.

Portugal’s Golden Visa is the perfect route to Portugal’s golden shores. Due to its flexibility and numerous benefits, this programme has proven to be one of the most popular programmes in Europe – providing the perfect solution for non-EU citizens, investors, and families looking for Portugal residency, plus the option to apply for citizenship after 6 years if that is the long-term objective.

With changes soon approaching at the end of 2021, there has been a rapid uptake of more applicants in the last few months. Forthcoming changes include Golden Visa investors not being able to purchase properties in high-density areas such as Lisbon, Oporto, and the Algarve, which opens up greater opportunities for investors in Portugal. Alternatively, there are very attractive advantages in any one of the other non-real estate routes (more information can be found here).

Portugal also offers a Non-Habitual Residents Programme to individuals who become tax resident in Portugal. This allows them to enjoy a special personal tax exemption on almost all foreign source income, and a 20% tax rate for employment and/or self-employment income, sourced from Portugal, over a 10-year period.

Last but not least, following on from the restrictions caused by the pandemic and the significant increase of people no longer working in an office, Portugal offers a temporary residence visa that can be used by freelancers and entrepreneurs, which digital nomads can take advantage of. The local government in Madeira has launched the ‘Madeira Digital Nomads’ project, to attract foreign professionals to the island. Those taking advantage of this initiative can live in the nomad village in Ponta do Sol, in villas or hotel accommodation and enjoy free; wi-fi, co-working stations, and specific events.

The Golden Visa may seem less important for EU citizens, as they already have a right to live in Portugal without formal immigration or investment being required, but the NHR has proved to be a major motivator for both EU and non-EU citizens looking to relocate.

Find out more: From Portugal’s Golden Visa to the Non-Habitual Residents Regime


Summary

Moving Abroad? What to think about!

If you require additional information regarding moving to Cyprus, Malta, or Portugal, or would like to speak to an adviser to find out which programme and/or country best suits you and your family’s needs, we have staff located in each jurisdiction, to answer your questions: