Changes to CIP in the OECS could benefit Antigua & Barbuda

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The outgoing Chief Executive Officer of the Citizenship by Investment Unit (CIU), Chisanga Chekwe, said the decision of other countries offering Citizenship by Investment Programmes (CIPs) to lower their fees under the National Development Fund (NDF) option, could turn out to be good for Antigua & Barbuda.

Up until January this year, the qualifying contribution for a single applicant under the NDF was US $200,000 for both St Lucia and Antigua & Barbuda.

But St Lucia has since dropped the cost to half that amount, making it the least expensive CIP of the five countries in the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) that offer the programme.

For Dominica’s CIP, a single applicant also has a US $100,000 price tag and in Deember, the processing fees were lowered by several thousand dollars, while it provides allowances for more dependents at lower rates on real estate applications.

“I do think, ironically, that the decision by some jurisdictions to lower the contribution to the national development fund is, for Antigua & Barbuda, a blessing in disguise because it has allowed us to focus more on business investors and investors in real estate,” Chekwe said.

He made the statement after noting that already there has been a slight change in the approach to marketing the programme, which has been a significant contributor to Antigua & Barbuda’s economy since its inception in 2013.

More in today’s Daily Observer. 

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