Citizenship by Investment in Montenegro
Montenegro citizenship by investment scheme was open for applications effective from October 3, 2019. The relative legislation came into force on Jan 1, 2019 and will apply until Dec 31, 2021. It allows foreigners to be granted citizenship by investment; the quota (limitation) of 2000 foreign investors is in place. The program is a combination of non-refundable donation (EUR 100,000) plus refundable investment (EUR 250,000 – EUR 450,000). This means applicants must donate a grant to the government and also invest in development projects (hotels, resorts, commercial real estate, etc.) that create jobs in Montenegro and contribute to the development of economy in general.
- Invest EUR 250,000 in some of the development projects previously approved by the Government in an undeveloped area of Montenegro, or EUR 450,000 in some of the development projects previously approved by the Government in the developed area of Montenegro and:
- Donation of EUR 100,000 to the Government.
- The investor must pay EUR 15,000 for an application, 10,000 euros for up to 4 family members, and 50,000 euros for each next family member. Due diligence and passport fees are extra.
Citizenship in Montenegro – Advantages
- Instant citizenship and passport within 3 months;
- Strong passport with 122 countries and territories visa free including free movement in EU countries and Schengen area, Russia, Turkey, Singapore etc. A visa is needed to travel to United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and United States;
- Montenegro is a future candidate for EU membership and joins Schengen area by 2025;
- Lifetime citizenship for investor and close family members;
- Efficient process: no business experience requirement, no physical residence requirements, no language tests.
- No military service required.
Under the new scheme, Montenegro allows holding dual citizenship and does not require relinquishing previous passports. As to normal naturalization (all other cases except citizenship by investment), Article 8 of Montenegrin Citizenship Act establishes the following requirements:
A petitioner may be admitted through the naturalization to the Montenegrin citizenship, in accordance to the interests of Montenegro if fulfils the following conditions:
- Has reached 18 years of age;
- Has a release from foreign citizenship;
- Has been legally and without interruption staying in Montenegro for the period of 10 years, prior to the petition for admission into Montenegrin citizenship;
- Has a guaranteed residence and guaranteed permanent source of income in Montenegro of an amount that enables material and social welfare;
- Has not been irrevocably sentenced in Montenegro or a foreign state to a prison term longer than one year and for a criminal offence prosecuted “ex officio” or legal consequences of such sentence are ceased;
- Possess active command of the Montenegrin language to the level which allows basic communication;
- Poses no threat to the security and defense of Montenegro;
- Discharged his/her tax obligations.
The condition from Paragraph 1 item 2 of this Article, does not regard a petitioner if the person has no citizenship at all or if the person can submit the evidence, that his/her own citizenship shall be cancelled by the law of his own State, through admission into Montenegrin citizenship. If criminal proceedings have been initiated for a criminal offence under Paragraph 1 item 5 of this paragraph, the procedure shall be suspended until a legally binding decree has been taken in the criminal proceedings. The Government of Montenegro (hereinafter: Government) shall appoint the Competent Organization for establishing of criteria and testing of language knowledge from paragraph 1 item 6 of this Article.
As we can see from the text above, the requirements for normal (standard) naturalization procedure imply that foreigner must prove Montenegrin language proficiency as well as have 10 years of legal residence in Montenegro. Moreover, the applicant must renounce his previous citizenship to felicitate oneself with Montenegrin passport.
Questions and answers
Question: I have been researching citizenship via investment in Montenegro and came across your site (good info, by the way). I know that there are a variety of variables, but from a simplistic and high level beyond fees, what are some of the advantages to Montenegro versus St. Kitts or Dominica?
Answer: Both Dominica and St. Kitts are good passport options especially for those applicants who will be OK with visa-free access to EU-country. But if you wish to settle permanently in Europe in the future, Montenegro citizenship is better.
If you wish to use our legal assistance in obtaining second citizenship in Montenegro, please, contact us today. When you send us an e-mail, please, indicate your current citizenship, country of residence, and age of every family member to be included into application in order we could quote the fees and expenses applicable in your case.