REAL ESTATE MINUTE with Cyril Nii Ayitey Tetteh: Foreign Citizenship and Visa Free Travel through Real Estate Investment


The scene is all too familiar; usually a huddle filled with anxious travelers, who are either working out the permutations of getting an interview date to present documentation for visa or periodically having to go through a mountain of paperwork and biometrics for visa renewal. Then there is also that group who have solid social and economic ties but just couldn’t present a good case thus having their visa application rejected. Acquiring a visa has become a more laborious process than it should ordinarily be, and while 5 or10-year multiple entry visas can provide some temporary relief, there are much more permanent solutions through real estate investment. Yes, you heard me right! How does that work? Well, since I am a good Ghanaian, here is your scoop, all for free. Ready? let’s go!

How does it work?

So, if you are a man or woman of means, high-net worth individual with considerable purchasing power and you can afford to part with hundred thousands of dollars by purchasing or investing real estate, you can not only acquire a 2nd citizenship but holding a passport of certain countries could grant you visa free entry to as many as 150 countries including the United States of America and the United Kingdom. You can invest either through a full purchase or a purchase of a share in a real estate property. Each country has requirements that are unique and you have to be thorough to find the program that best suits you. There are consultants that you can hire to guide you through the process.

What is in it for the countries?

As international trade and economies go through phases of prosperity and recessions. Governments are ever on the lookout for creative ways to raise funds. Offering the opportunity to earn citizenship, visas, residency and passports have provided viable means of boosting economic activity.

Citizenship By Investment (CBI) is now such a huge industry with an estimated $20 billion a year in investment especially in the real estate sector. The programs have done more than boost their economies, also changing local real estate markets. With an average of USD$100,000 per investment in property, CBI has provided a viable means of fueling economic activity.

Pathway to US citizenship?

Yes, there is a pathway to US citizenship. It can be found in the Caribbean, specifically Grenada. Their CBI program allows a qualifying share purchase of the project, with the highlight being an E-2 treaty with USA which means path to U.S citizenship. Some other Caribbean countries such as Antigua & Barbuda, Dominica, and St Kitts & Nevis also provide interesting CBI programs. Turkey, Portugal, Spain and Greece also have these programs where citizenship can be applied for after 3-7 years.

What is the process if I want to invest?

Choose a qualifying project – You have to invest in one of the approved real estate developments, such as luxury resorts, residential properties, or eco-tourism projects.

Due diligence -When you find a real estate project, you will have to submit yourself to a due diligence process involving your social, financial and identity checks

If you check out on due diligence, you can then formally apply and the process typically takes 6 months on average to obtain approval for investments in the range of USD$200 -350,000 minimum level of investment.

The Benefits

Beyond acquiring the passport and having the freedom to travel visa free, you are also eligible to access their health and social programs. If you want to know more about these golden passport programs and seek special consultation, do reach out to us and we will guide you through the process.

The writer is the Executive director of Yecham Property Consult

 & Founder of Ghana Green Building Summit.

Email: [email protected]

Linkedin: Cyril Nii Ayitey Tetteh


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