Bulgarian Citizenship by Investment can be obtained through two routes. Applicants must first deposit €512,000 in one of many investment fund vehicles to be considered for the Permanent Residency Program. It takes about six months to finish the process. Applicants can fast-track obtaining citizenship after their residency has been approved by investing an additional €512,000. It takes roughly 18 months to complete the process, making it one of the quickest ways to get citizenship in an EU country.
Bulgaria offers permanent residency in exchange for an investment in one of many investment funds that must be retained for five years. The funds can be withdrawn and refunded to the investor at the end of the five-year period. Bulgarian stocks, exchange-traded funds, private equity, venture capital or hedge funds, and/or real estate investment trusts (REITs) are all permissible investments.
Bulgarian investment Options
For a foreign national interested in getting Bulgarian citizenship by investment in 2021, the first step is to apply for a permanent residency visa based on the type of investment. Individuals have the choice of making passive investments, purchasing real estate in the country, or pursuing entrepreneurial opportunities. Regardless of the path chosen, it is important to remember that the investment is subject to certain minimum requirements, which is why it is advisable to seek professional legal assistance, such as that provided by our Bulgarian team of attorneys, to ensure that your proposed investment is accepted.
The following are some investing options:
- Government bonds: in this situation, a minimum investment amount of 511,292 euros is required, as well as a statutory holding period;
- Greenfield projects: demand a minimum investment of 125,000 euros or the acquisition of at least 50% of the capital in a Bulgarian firm operating in an underdeveloped region; one of our Bulgarian lawyers can provide more information on this condition.
- Open a firm: invest 250,000 euros in a new Bulgarian company or buy at least 50% of an existing company; the company must create 10 jobs.
- Invest in an existing company: foreign investors can invest at least 3,000,000 euros in a private Bulgarian company’s share capital.
- Invest in real estate: a minimum investment in a Bulgarian property is 300,000 euros; an alternative is to use the same money to buy at least 50% of a Bulgarian company, then use the company to buy real estate.
Foreign investors who invest in a Priority Investment Project, as specified by the Investment Promotion Act, can also earn permanent residence in Bulgaria.
Documents Required When Applying for a Golden Visa in Bulgaria
You must prepare the following documentation for the Bulgarian investment program:
- This is the application form. You must complete a visa application form for your D visa, as well as a request for your permanent residence card, if applicable.
- A copy of your passport pages is required. Some embassies/consulates may require the original passport; confirm with the embassy ahead of time.
- Investment certificate. The Bulgarian Immigration Office will issue you a certificate certifying your investment when you submit it. Along with the rest of the relevant paperwork, you must present the certificate.
- Proof of visa fees paid. You must demonstrate proof that you paid for your application and processing fees by submitting a receipt.
- Passport Photo. Depending on the embassy’s criteria, you’ll need a recent passport photo or more.
- Documents proving your civil status. You must submit certified copies of your civil status documents, which include the following:
- Certificate of Birth
- Certificate of Marriage (if applicable)
- Divorce documents (if applicable)
- Documents related to adoption (if applicable)
- Documents relating to name changes (if applicable)
- Certificate from the police. You must present a police clearance certificate from your home country demonstrating that you have no criminal history.
- Evidence of funds. Submit bank statements demonstrating that you have sufficient financial resources to make the investment and maintain yourself and any dependents who apply. Proof that the monies you have come from a legitimate source is also required.
- Travel medical insurance is a must. When applying for an investor visa, you must acquire travel health insurance. The insurance must be active for the duration of your stay and cover any unexpected events.
New conditions for people interested in the Bulgarian citizenship by investment
The European Union has asked countries with citizenship by investment programs to either end or amend the conditions under which these schemes were formed in recent years. While other countries decide to discontinue their programs, Bulgaria has altered its scheme, and as of March 20, 2021, the government will give new investment possibilities, as well as new restrictions. Those interested in relocating to Bulgaria through citizenship by investment have six choices. They can now invest at least 500,000 BGN (about 255,000 euros) in these funds.