Checkmate IQ Advisory Letter
A Second Citizenship: An Alternative Investment?
Of politics and citizenship
During my travels in recent months, I have encountered a number of individuals that have stated their willingness to “move to Canada” if a certain candidate is elected as 45th President of the United States. Unsurprisingly, given the relative lack of enthusiasm behind both parties’ respective nominees (at historic lows in favorability), this sentiment may be partly understandable. Nevertheless, I am doubtful that many of my frustrated fellow-citizens will follow through on their plan Bs, however desperate they may feel. However, the idea of obtaining an additional citizenship might be considered a reasonable pursuit for some, albeit for different reasons. The notion of citizenship has become increasingly more fluid in recent years, as global flows of commerce and people have blurred previous geographic and political boundaries.
The emerging “global citizen”
In today’s world, it is not uncommon to meet someone who holds several passports, and not as a result of dubious circumstances. Just yesterday I had the pleasure of meeting a young woman with dual citizenship from Colombia and America, who lived in Switzerland for the majority of her life. As a result, she holds three passports that undoubtedly creates some confusion during her globetrotting, for both herself and immigration officials. When I asked her what she would refer to herself as, she replied : “I don’t know really. My family is from everywhere and I never had a strong connection to any one place- I guess I am a ‘global citizen!’” In this case, the young woman’s shifting identity was something that she did not choose, but rather it was the consequence of her family’s decisions to relocate for primarily economic reasons. Nonetheless, there is a growing demand for the option of an alternative citizenship. This need has been met by a number of countries that offer citizenship and a new passport in exchange for investment in their nation.
A second passport
Why would someone want another passport? Place aside for a moment the imaginative impulse that conjures images of James Bond villains and other international men of mystery, and consider the numerous advantages of alternative citizenship. For one, most of the world’s population lives outside of the rich countries of Europe, North America, and Japan. Except for a relatively few exceptions, most people do not enjoy visa-free travel to locations such as the European Union and the United States. Thus, travel is often a cumbersome experience for those wishing to travel to or engage in business in various parts of the world. In addition, individuals who find themselves in precarious political or economic situations are oftentimes restricted from keeping their assets outside of their home countries, thereby limiting their overall freedom. Fortunately, some nations have provided an option to those seeking to unbound from their country of origin, thereby enabling them with the ultimate freedom of movement. Several countries in the Caribbean including Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, St. Kitts and Nevis, and St. Lucia have adopted citizenship investment programs that provide a second passport and residence in exchange for approved investment projects, primarily in real estate. Additionally, similar programs exist in the European Union such as in Cyprus and Malta. These programs offer individuals the opportunity to truly become global citizens by empowering their ease of travel and ensuring asset protection.
At Checkmate IQ, we are pleased to announce the commencement of advisory services for individuals seeking to obtain an alternative citizenship. With our breadth of experience that extends over several continents, our international network of consultants and advisory partners are able to provide custom tailored solutions to every client’s needs during this process. Please inquire about our Global Citizenship Program (GCP) by contacting us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
-David Karg, Managing Consultant and Founder