Residency in Georgia
When we mention Georgia, you may not have a clue where it is on the map, and that, without a doubt, is proof that Georgia is one of the most underrated countries in the world to live and invest in.
Located about 3-4 hours flight from the main capitals of Europe, with a population of fewer than 4 million habitants, Georgia is the bridge between Asia and the "old continent", with many opportunities and benefits to live, being one of the post-Soviet countries that has developed the most in the last decade thanks to immigrant friendly policies, since it grants a one-year visa just by stepping on the country.
In fact, the Georgian residency programs are one of the most underrated and valuable programs of this type in Europe. In a nutshell, we will tell you some of the advantages of it:
- It is the only country on the planet that grants foreigners a 365 days residency permit upon arriving in the country.
- Georgian citizens do not need a visa to enter to EU countries.
- Georgia has one of the most flexible tax regimes in Europe. The corporate tax is a flat rate of 15%, a VAT of 18% and a personal income tax of 20%.
- This small country has had a sound growth in recent years thanks to its great economic policies that had fostered foreign investment.
Continue reading and we will tell you all you need to know about the Georgian residency programs and tax residency.
Why is Georgia a great place to live?
If you decide to move to Georgia, you will have a pleasant climate most of the year; summers tend to be sunny, and winters mild and frost-free. Georgia's moderate climate and moist air, influenced by the Black Sea, is perfect for wine-making, so if you enjoy good wine, this country with 8000 years of history-making this drink, will offer you a variety.
For this reason, it is not surprising that the capital of the country, Tbilisi, has become a fashionable destination for expats, (especially for digital nomads, since getting a local job is not easy) as it provides tranquility, stability, and modernity, with the touch of simplicity that characterizes this small State; It has all the comforts of Europe, but at a much lower cost, I mean, renting your own apartment wouldn’t cost much more than $ 250 and even luxury apartments rarely hit $ 800. A single person estimated monthly costs are 416.25 $, adding rent.
As you can see, Georgia is a great place to live, but to do business too:
Why is Georgia a great place to do business?
Georgia is 7th among 190 states in the World Bank Doing Business 2020 ranking, retains its place among the world's top ten countries in ease of doing business and According to World Bank Group, Georgia Ranks as the 3rd Least Tax Burden Country in the World, with 9.9% Total Tax Rate; so I think that says enough about how suitable this country is for doing business.
It is characterized by a stable economic development, liberal and free-market-oriented economic policy; and that is saying a lot, because Georgia became independent only in 1991, after the fall of the Soviet Union; and suffered from political and economic instability until the 2000s.
Since the the fall of the Iron Curtain, Georgia has been characterized by its sound growth fostered by a series of profound economic reforms and low levels of corruption, which allowed it to take advantage of its favorable geopolitical location, since it is located right on the border between Europe and Asia, being the bridge between these continents, and has good economic relations with the EU, the United States, China, Turkey, and Iran.
It is a country full of young and skilled people and an ‘Open Door Policy’ to help companies grow in the country.
How to get residency in Georgia (the main ways for investors and expats)?
Georgia is one of the most open countries in the world, with a bureaucracy that makes legal processes simple, including applying for residency. Georgia offers visas, residence permits, and tax residency status to investors, property owners, entrepreneurs, freelancers, workers, and their family members, with a path to citizenship. It has been for years the only country in the world that grants almost all nationalities an initial right of residence of 365 days upon arrival in the country.
Those who wish to remain in the country after one year of residence can simply apply for a residence and work permit up to 40 days before the first year expires. It is not a difficult permit to receive and is renewed every year, even if you earn your income from outside of Georgia. This amazing country offers several types of temporary residence permits. The ones that may interest you the most are:
- Work Residence Permit (for those with a work contract or business in Georgia): This is temporary residency, valid for a minimum of six months, extendable. If you work or run a business in Georgia, this could be for you.
- Short-term Residence Permit (based on property ownership): This is a short-term residency, valid for a minimum of one year and extendable. If you invest a minimum of $100 000 in real state (not agricultural land), you’re eligible.
- High-Net-Worth Individual: If the value of your assets is higher than $945,000, or your annual income exceeded $63,000 in each of the last three years, you are eligible for this residency, in addition, proof of a residence permit of Georgia or your annual income Georgian sources exceed GEL 25,000 (around $7,900)
- Investment residence permit (permanent): This is issued initially for 5 years, to a foreign citizen (or family) who invested in Georgia economy or real estate at least USD 300 000. After those 5 years, it becomes permanent provided the investment lasts throughout this period.
The process for getting the Georgian residency permit
Issuing a Georgian residence permit can generally take between 20 and 30 business days and requires between $134 and $85 in fees. These are the documents that you will need to opt for this residency:
- Travel document, like your passport: Original and certified Georgian translation
- Copy of visa or other document showing legal stay in Georgia
- Auditor’s opinion confirming the value of the property
- Property ownership certificate
- Photographs (3x4 certificate)
- Government fee payment receipt
- Application form
Georgian residency through real estate investment
This permit can be obtained by purchasing a real estate with a minimum value of 100,000 US Dollars. We will give you some quick facts about the process:
- Our partner brokers can assist a client in finding a suitable property.
- Registration of property can be organized fully remotely or with physical presence of a future owner. Process takes 1 working day.
- As soon as a client becomes an owner of a property, our partners will issue an official document indicating a value of the property and will apply to the Emigration Department requesting a residence permit. Please note that During an application process a client should be present in Georgia, this procedure can not be organized remotely.
- The quickest review of an application form takes 10 working days. As soon as applicants get an acceptance he/she will need to arrive and sign all documents to receive a card, this specific procedure can not be organized remotely and we will need a presence of the applicant.
You must note that by owning 100 K value property Government issues only 1 year residence, and it needs to be renewed every year, by arriving to Georgia twice, which might not be very comfortable, but if an applicant invests 300,000 US Dollars in real estate instead of 100,000 it would be possible to get 5 year residence permit with the same application procedures.
Tax residency in Georgia
The essential requirements to be able to obtain tax residence in Georgia are to have a legal residence permit and an identity card. Let's see the 2 existing options to obtain tax residence and obtain the long-awaited tax certificate:
- First option: The Flag Theory. Stay 183 days a year in Georgia.
The first option is to acquire tax residence in Georgia and the certificate to withdraw from the Tax Agency of your country by staying in Georgian territory for a period of time minimum of 183 days (consecutive or nonconsecutive) within 12 months. It doesn't matter if you are here on the tourist visa waiver stamp or any other type of visa. This rule applies to any person within the borders of Georgia
- Second option: Through HNWI Status (High-Net-Worth Individual)
This second option frees you from the minimum stay requirement in Georgia. In other words, regardless of the days you were present in Georgian territory, you can choose to obtain your tax residence in the country and, subsequently, the long-awaited certificate.
Option 1 If you can prove that you have had an annual income of at least $90,000 per year in the last 3 years. This income can be both local income and foreign income, and can be substantiated by tax returns, income certificates, or bank statements showing the income entry.
Or; Option 2, that the value of assets of an applicant in Georgia or abroad exceed 1 million USD.
Additionally either Option 1 or Option 2 an applicant is obliged to generate a minimum annual income of around 10,000 USD from Georgian sources to become eligible to apply.
These are the documents that you will need:
1. Proof of assets with a value over GEL 3,000,000, or annual income of GEL 200,000 over the last three years
2. Annual income from Georgian sources of GEL 25,000.
A special case is for High-Net-Worth foreigners who are not willing to stay more than 183 days a year in Georgia. They still can get tax residency for specific financial year if they meet one of below conditions:
- Holding a Georgian Residence Permit* and Assets with a value of over 1 million USD that can be proved by official documents OR an annual Foreign income of at least $90,000 in the last 3 years.
- Having a minimum annual income of 10,000 USD from Georgian company*and assets with a value of over 1 million USD that can be proved by official documents OR Annual Foreign income of at least $90,000 in the last 3 years.
Georgia has an extraordinary flexible tax regime when you compare it to the rest of Europe. For example, the corporate tax rate is a flat 15%, really low when you compare it to 26,5% in France or 25% in Spain. So on, tax optimization can be a good reason to consider moving to Georgia.
The typical tax rates is Georgia are the following:
- 20% for personal income
- 15% for corporate tax income
- 18% Value Added Tax
- Up to 1% Property Tax
- Between 0 and 12% for Import Taxes
What can we do for you?
In Mundo, we love Georgia because it is one of the last frontiers of freedom. This country is one of the best places to do business in Eastern Europe and has an extraordinary flexible tax regime.
Getting a Georgian residence permit is one of the best financial decisions you can make to safeguard your legacy. Our partners in Georgia will help you with the whole process so it can be completed in record time.
Essentially, they offer two packages:
Package for real estate investment. Which includes:
- Assistance in searching the real estate investment, legal support during property registration and issuance of official valuation.
- Application and full legal support in obtaining a Residence permit and tax residency certificate.
Package for company creation. This includes:
- Company incorporation + corporate bank account + personal bank account.
- Application and full legal support in obtaining a Tax residency certificate.
Apply for the next great financial decision in your life by getting Tax residency in Georgia. Contact us now!
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