Individuals and families are becoming increasingly mobile and the ability to hold a second passport is becoming more relevant. The Caribbean is an attractive destination for a number of reasons, including the relaxing lifestyle, beautiful scenery and the climate. There are also opportunities to hold a second passport, even if the immediate intention is not to relocate to the Caribbean.

Why do Families and Individuals Require a Second Passport?

There are a variety of reasons why people wish to acquire a second or alternate nationality:

  • To offer insurance against political, economic or fiscal change in the individual's country of origin.
  • To make international travel easier. Nationals of many countries have to endure lengthy waiting periods to obtain visas for travel to a number of western countries. This may be because they are nationals of a developing country or there may be animosity between their country and another.
  • To allow the passport holder to avoid discrimination.
  • To avoid the risk of potentially hostile treatment by Government officials, kidnappers and hostage takers.
  • To present new opportunities for the tax structuring of personal tax affairs. Generally an individual's residence and Citizenship are the ultimate basis for the majority of taxation rulings.
  • Citizens of the United States of America and certain other countries are subject to tax on their worldwide income, irrespective of their country of residence. They are denied the residence-linked tax planning opportunities that are available to others. It is possible for such individuals to gain fiscal advantages by acquiring a new citizenship and renouncing their original citizenship.

Proposed Options for Citizenship within the Caribbean

There are a number of different options for Citizenship within the Caribbean, which include St Kitts & Nevis, Antigua and Dominica.

These schemes also offer the option of residence in other Caricom countries (Antigua & Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, Saint Lucia, St Kitts & Nevis, St Vincent & Grenadines, Suriname and Trinidad & Tobago).

Dixcart is a licensed Service Provider for the St Kitts & Nevis Citizenship by Investment scheme and can also assist with the coordination of applications for the Antigua and Dominica schemes.

The key characteristics of each scheme are detailed below.

ST KITTS & NEVIS

Key Features of the Scheme

  • Passport holders enjoy full Schengen privileges and do not require a visa to visit the UK. A St Kitts & Nevis passport enables travel to approximately 130 countries worldwide either on a visa free or visa on entry basis.
  • The ability to reside in other Caricom countries (please see detailed list above).
  • The following taxes are NOT levied in St Kitts & Nevis: personal income tax, gift tax, death duties, estate taxes, inheritance tax or capital gains tax on worldwide income.
  • Individuals do not need to visit St Kitts & Nevis to apply to the scheme, as long as a licensed service provider in St Kitts & Nevis, such as Dixcart, is used to coordinate the application.
  • There is no obligation to reside in St Kitts & Nevis or to spend any time there if the individual does not wish to do so.
  • The St Kitts & Nevis citizenship by investment scheme Is one of the oldest citizenship by investment programmes in the world
  • The application process is simple and Dixcart can assist with the collection and completion of the various forms before submission.

There are Two Investment Routes

Real Estate

  • A minimum US $400,000 investment in an approved real estate development. The real estate must not be resold for a period of at least five years after the granting of citizenship.
  • Government processing fees are applicable:

    • Main applicant               $50,000
    • Spouse                          $25,000
    • Dependants 16<            $25,000
    • Dependants 18>            $50,000
  • Due diligence fees are:

    • Main applicant               $7,500
    • Spouse                          $4,000

One off Donation

  • Qualification for investment can be achieved by making a one off donation to the Sugar Industry Diversification Fund ("SIDF").
  • Donations start at $250,000 for a single applicant and rise in increments of $50,000 as additional dependants are added to the application.
  • Processing time is approximately 3 months.

Antigua

Key Features of the Scheme

  • Passport holders enjoy full Schengen privileges and do not require a visa to visit the UK as well as being able to travel to approximately 130 countries worldwide, including Hong Kong, Canada, Singapore, UK and Europe.
  • The ability to reside in other Caricom countries.
  • The following taxes are NOT levied in Antigua: personal income tax, gift tax, death duties, estate taxes, inheritance tax or capital gains tax on worldwide income.
  • Antigua is an economically, legally and socially stable country which is part of the Commonwealth.
  • Antigua is a beautiful island to live on, with 365 pristine beaches.
  • The application process is simple, and Dixcart can assist with the collection and completion of the various forms before submission.

Dominica

Key Features of the Scheme

  • The investment route options are cheaper than for St Kitts & Nevis and Antigua.
  • Dominica Economic Citizens have the same rights as Dominica born nationals.
  • Visa free or visa on entry travel to over 90 countries worldwide including Europe and the UK.
  • The ability to reside in other Caricom countries
  • The following taxes are NOT levied in Dominica: no death duties, estate taxes, inheritance tax or capital gains tax.
  • The application process is simple, and Dixcart can assist with the collection and completion of the various forms before submission.

Originally published 13 October 2015

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.