The official list of companies and individuals licensed to submit applications to the government under the program.
Historically, the citizenship by investment programs were limited to a
few Pacific and Caribbean islands that could offer little beyond a second reliable
passport and a legal escape for passport-holders.
That’s pretty good
benefits, you may think, and you’d be correct.
However, in 2014, the game
changed: Malta became the first EU country to offer an extensive CBI program.
That means it was the first country to provide additional benefits in an
attractive investment environment for those willing to apply for the program.
Malta’s CBI program was an
overhaul in the system. Similar programs followed it in Cyprus, another EU
country, and Montenegro, a prospective EU member.
However, Malta remains the
most prestigious program. Firstly, because it is an EU country, Montenegro is
yet to be a member of the EU. Even as the plans seem to be running well, the
entry was moved from 2022 to 2025. You may say: hey, but Cyprus is an EU member
too! Yes, but its program costs more than double than Malta’s CBI, and Malta
offers similar tax benefits for those willing to apply in the residency program.
And we have good news: In
Mundo, we can offer you the best experts to apply and obtain a Maltese passport
or residence for you and your family. We work with Discus Holdings, they have
more than 20 years of experience in the area and incredible success rates in
obtaining passport and residence in Malta for their clients.
Before discussing the
specific benefits and requirements of the program, let’s talk a bit about the history
and the island. Malta is one of the most stable democracies and economies in
the world. When Europe faced the debt crisis of 2010 and countries were on the
brink of collapse, Malta and Germany were the only economies that kept growing.
Malta has been an EU
member since 2004 and has an amazingly stable bipartisan political system,
where both parties converge in the importance of the free market and in being a
country attractive for FDI. Malta is an archipelago right in the middle of the
Mediterranean Sea, which has historically made the country a trade hub between
Southern Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa. The country is also a top
Mediterranean tourism destination thanks to its warm climate, heavenly beaches,
beautiful architectonical sites, and over 300 days of sunshine per year.
Likewise, the country
enjoys a fantastic life quality, even for European standards. It has an almost
non-existent crime rate, and both amazing healthcare and educational system.
The country has two
programs for investors: the Global Residence Program and the Individual Investor
Program. The first grants residence, and the second grants citizenship. Both
programs seek to attract FDI to the island and supporting social projects in
Even better: we work with
one of the top service providers to aid high net work individuals apply to the
RBI and CBI programs to ensure they can protect their legacy.
Let’s discus some of the
Why is it Malta the ideal option for foreign investors?
1) The 7th-best passport in the world,
with full access to the EU and the US
Yes, just as you read. A
Maltese passport gives you visa-free access to 182 countries, which is
significantly higher than the Russian, Chinese, all Latin American passports,
and even most European passports. It’s also the best passport among all
countries with CBI programs. It gives you visa-free access to the USA, Canada,
Japan, the UK, and the European Union.
Moreover, it allows you to
live, work, travel, study, and invest across the European Union and Switzerland,
meaning this passport opens terrific financial opportunities for you and your
This program is definitely
a great choice for wealthy
families and businesspeople. The political and economic turmoil in the world sems to be
never ending which is exactly why it is highly advisable to obtain dual
With the recent crisis of the coronavirus pandemic, you never know when
a country suddenly will decide to close its borders. Holding a second passport
may very well save you from these unfortunate situations.
If you are lucky and never
have to go through this, a second passport, especially one from the EU, can
help you improve your chances of growth and expand your business to new markets
and business possibilities.
2) Extensive program
Not only the main
applicant can receive the residency/citizenship, but also his or her spouse,
children under 18, children over 18 without age restrictions in the residency
or up to 26 years old in the citizenship program, if they are financially
dependent on the applicant and not married. Even parents and grandparents of
the main applicant or her spouse’s, if they live with the principal applicant
and are financially dependent on him, can receive the residency or citizenship.
That means that, across the European CBIs, the Maltese program is the one that
allows the largest number of benefited individuals.
3) Investment opportunities:
Malta is the
fastest-growing economy in the EU. Its economy is profoundly diversified, as it
produces microchips, provides extensive financial services and was the first country
in the world to regulate blockchain-related services. Likewise, the country has
had a fiscal surplus in the last two years and has one of the lowest
unemployment rates in the EU. It is considered the 42nd freest
economy in the world by the Index of Economic Freedom, with particularly high
scores in trade freedom and fiscal health.
4) Tax optimization:
Malta has no wealth taxes,
and its tax base is domicile, not citizenship. That means that those holding
Maltese citizenship doesn’t mean they are automatically tax residents, they are
only taxed on remittances, and there’s no mandatory asset reporting. Likewise,
non-resident citizens are only taxable on their Maltese-sourced income and have
the freedom to reside in any other jurisdiction that allows them to optimize
Furthermore, Malta has
more than 70 double taxation treaties, which gives investors plenty of
opportunities to optimize and plan their taxes. Likewise, the residency program
offers a unique flat 15 % income tax rate for those who receive a positive
5) Full EU support and harmonization
The EU supported the
program from its beginning as Malta guaranteed strong background checks and due
diligence. This attracted plenty of investors that value transparency. Malta
boasts one of the most stable and widely supported CBI programs, as they’ve
been the one with the lesser amount of scandals linked to them.
If you’re interested in
knowing all our services in Malta, you can check our Country Focus page.
Residence and citizenship
After walking you through
the main benefits of the citizenship and residency programs, let’s start
talking about the specifics. Both programs have similar eligibility criteria
that must be considered before the application:
Now, we can discuss the
financial requirements of both programs:
program has way smaller financial requirements:
ØPurchase €250k worth of government bonds on the
ØMake a €30k contribution to the National Development
Social Fund (NDSF)
ØRent a property for at least €10k per year or
purchase a property of at least €270k
ØYou must include an affidavit concerning your
ØThe property and investments must be held for
at least five years
ØTotal minimum investment: €330k with rented
property, €550k with purchased property
program, logically, has higher financial requirements:
ØYou need to make a contribution of €650k to
ØIt is necessary to invest in at least €150k
stocks, bonds or other securities approved by Identity Malta
ØThe applicant is required to purchase a
residence of at least €350k to be held for at least 5 years, or else lease
a residence for 5 years, at a yearly rent of at least €16k
ØThe main applicant and all the dependents are required
to get global health insurance of at least €50,000.
Ø€25k must be added to the NDSF contribution per
dependent minor, and €50k per adult dependent
ØTotal minimum investment: €1150k with purchased
property, €880k with rented property.
You may see that even if
the differences are significant, they are somewhat lower than in other
citizenship and residency by investment programs. For example, the residency
program in Cyprus only requires a €300k investment, while the citizenship
program requires a €2m investment.
Why are the programs so
different in Malta? Because they have two different targets. The residency
program points at high-net-worth individuals looking to optimize their taxes in
Malta, as it offers a 15 % flat income tax rate for them, if their income
remitted to Malta is of at least €25k per year, and can also benefit those
individuals from countries that don’t allow double citizenship. In fact, RBI
beneficiaries are required to live in Malta for at least 90 days per year.
The citizenship program,
on the other hand, targets high-net-worth individuals who want a robust second
passport without necessarily settling domicile or tax residency in that
Lastly, let’s walk you
through the application process, step by step.
Let’s start with the residence
program. It has five main steps:
1)Preparing and submitting your application: In
this step, our experts will provide an initial background check to see if the
potential applicant is eligible and gather all the necessary documents for the
application. It also includes the payment of the legal fees and filling the
application to start the process formally.
2)Due diligence: The government will start a
background check of the main applicant, his or her spouse, and dependents. It
includes a payment to the security services to start the due diligence
3)Decision on the application: In this step, the
Maltese authorities will decide over the application. Only after this point,
the main applicant will make the €30k contribution to the Maltese government,
purchase the bonds, and rent/purchase the property.
4)Biometric data and application for the
residency card: The applicant must travel to Malta to submit his biometric data
5)Obtaining the residency card: The process
finishes when the government issues a residency card that is valid for five
years, and the applicant can redeem and receive payback for his investments in
You must consider the
ØLegal fees: €30k (they cover the whole family)
ØDue diligence fees: €5.5k
Now, regarding the citizenship
program, the process is a little more intricate, and in a best-case scenario, it
takes 12 months because the applicant must prove he’s resided in Malta for the
las 365 days. Nonetheless, the law doesn’t make entirely clear how much
time the applicant must effectively spend in Malta. The overall, in some cases,
has taken up to 24 months. Here are the steps:
1)Our experts conduct initial due diligence to
guarantee the applicant is eligible and has gathered all the necessary documents,
and only afterward will charge their professional assistance fees
2) The applicant must the application forms and
gather all the required documentation asked by our experts. Here, Identity
Malta conducts the due diligence over the main applicant and his family.
3)Our experts send the application to Identity
Malta along with the due diligence fees.
4)Identity Malta provides a response. If it’s favorable, it will
issue a Letter of App-roval in Principle to our experts. In some cases, a
Request for Interview may be issued. Identity Malta has the responsibility to
do so in 120 days after the application was received.
5)When the Letter of Approval in Principle
arrives, the client has 25 days to pay the non-refundable contribution to the
6)Within four months of the arrival of the Letter
of Approval in Principle, the client must prove to Identity Malta he has
completed the real estate purchase or lease and the acquisition of securities.
7)After doing this, the applicant and his family
must travel to Malta to take the Oath of Allegiance and provide the biometric
8)Afterward, the applicant and all his applicant
dependents will receive their naturalization card and can fill a simple
passport application to obtain it.
You must consider the
ØPassport fees (per person): €500
ØBank charges (per application): €200
§Main applicant: €7.5k
§Underage dependent child: €3k
§Adult dependent child: €5k
§Adult dependent: €5k
ØUpfront contribution to the NDSF: €10k of the
In today’s world, having
an additional passport/residency is almost a must for high-net-worth
individuals. Malta’s program provides a swift path in both cases, with
incredible tax optimization opportunities, secure investments, and strong due
diligence that gives you a pathway across the entire European Union. It has the
best elements of all other CBI and RBI programs without most of their flaws.
That’s why it is the most prestigious program in the whole world.
Who we are
we want to help you protect your legacy, your investments, and your family.
Since 1994 we’ve been helping high net worth individuals obtain second
passports to protect their investments, their families, and do business with
25 years, we’ve built an unparalleled network of experts to provide first-level
services with an unmatched degree of expertise for our clients. That’s why we
work with Discus Holdings, which is, by far, the best RBI and CBI services
provider in Cyprus, with presence in dozens of countries.
friends at Discus Holdings have more than 25 years of experience in second
passsports and residencies. This excellent team offers complete transparecy,
meaning you won’t have to face unpleasent surprises like hidden fees that you
didn’t expect. For Mundo and
for all our experts, trust is the most important thing and is the
basement on which we build every relationship.
experts will also offer support during the process and after the residency or
citizenship has been approved. Discus Holdings and Mundo also provide valuable tax and
financial advice so that the applicant can take care of his business and assets
during the process of acquiring citizenship.
INTERVIEW WITH LASZLO KISS, DISCUS HOLDINGS’ MANAGING DIRECTOR
The Malta CBI and RBI
programs are probably the most prestigious. Why have they been so successful?
Answer: In 2020, only two
EU Member States have real citizenship by investment programs. Both Malta and
Cyprus are flourishing countries with mild weather, welcoming people, and low
taxes. Moreover, the Maltese passport is the most useful travel document among
all travel documents of the jurisdictions with CIP schemes.
What advantages can the program offer for investors?
Answer: investors can enjoy the uncomparable advantages of Malta. They
become citizens of the European Union, can travel, live, and work in any other
European countries in the Union and the Schengen zone. Don't forget the
citizens' children may also study in other states. Also, it's vital to
notice that Malta's low-tax regime differs from the other rigid and high-tax
laws of most EU Member States.
Malta has a long tradition of productive,
profitable commerce and banking. The Maltese financial center is prepared to accept foreign business,
there are no cultural barriers, and the financial institutes are flexible.
Nowadays, health care became a crucially important question. The blue EU
healthcare card allows the holders to receive treatment in any other Member
State for free. Maltese citizens, who are living in another country do not have
to pay tax on their foreign-sourced income.
Why choose Malta, and not
Cyprus, who is an EU member, too, or one of the Caribbean and Pacific Islands
that offer a CBI program?
Answer: Malta has unique
advantages. First of all, in the EU, only Malta and Ireland use English as an
official language. Don't forget that Malta uses territorial taxation, and
foreign-sourced income is tax-exempt while Cyprus has a worldwide tax system.
Regarding the comparison
with the Caribbean programs, the primary benefit of those programs is the
Schengen visa exemption. Still, a Caribbean passport does not allow you to live
or work in the European Union. The passport of Malta offers you another level
of freedom to travel. The Maltese passport will enable you to enter 169
countries without a visa or by picking up one upon arrival, and it is the fifth
strongest travel document of the world. Even the strongest Caribbean passport
(of Saint Kitts and Nevis) allows you to enter only 142 countries and holds the
19th position in the international comparison of the passports' strength.
Are the programs seeing
many backlogs? What is the average time it takes to get the CBI and RBI?
Answer: As official agents
of the program, it is our responsibility to submit complete documentation.
There can be seasonal backlog during the RBI scheme, but if there are no
missing documents, we can plan the time frame of the successful processes,
according to the law. Regarding the residency by investment program, the due
diligence process takes three months. Meanwhile, to obtain the Maltese passport
through the citizenship scheme takes one year.
What are the main
differences between both programs? Do they provide the same potential tax
Answer: Naturally, the
legal status of a resident and a citizen is different. In Malta, the not
domiciled residents enjoy tax exemption on their not remitted foreign-sourced
income. Meanwhile, the citizens of Malta can live where they want and can
become tax residents in other countries so that they can decide their tax requirements[EB1]. (READ MORE)
Apart from the financial
requirements, do the programs have different requirements regarding the
Answer: No, the applicants
must meet the same conditions, the "Fit and Proper" due diligence
check of Malta is strict and serves as a role model internationally for the
other investor's immigration schemes.
Does the RBI program have
any particular requirements over the minimum annual income?How much has to be
added per dependent?
In the case of the Malta
Residence & Visa Program, the applicant must prove an annual income of not
less than €100,000 arising outside Malta or must have a capital of minimum
€500,000. Meanwhile, the eligibility criteria for the Individual Investor
Programme is that all applicants and each dependent must have a global health
insurance coverage of at least €50,000 and must provide evidence that they can
maintain it for an indefinite period.
How many dependents are
allowed by both programs?
Under the Malta IIP:
·a child, including an adopted child, of the
main applicant, or of the spouse of the main applicant, who is less than 18
years of age;
·a child of the main applicant, or of the spouse
of the main applicant, who is between 18 and 26 years of age, who is not
married, and who proves that he/she is wholly maintained or supported by the
·a parent or grandparent of the main applicant,
or of the spouse of the principal appli-cant, who is over 55 years of age, and
proves that he/she is wholly maintained or supported by the main applicant, and
forms part of the household of the main applicant
·a child of the main applicant, or of the spouse
of the principal applicant, who is at least 18 years of age, is physically or
mentally challenged, and who is living with and is fully supported by the
Meanwhile, under the MVRP
Program, the following dependents of the primary applicant may participate:
·The spouse of the principal applicant in a
monogamous marriage or in another relationship having a similar status to
marriage, unless the Minister authorizes otherwise on a case by case basis.
·A child, including an adopted child, of the
principal applicant or of his spouse who at the time of application, is less
than eighteen years of age.
·A child, including an adopted child, of the
principal applicant or of his or her spouse, who at the time of application is
not yet born or not yet adopted by the principal applicant or by his spouse,
and is born or becomes so adopted after the appointed day.
·A child, including an adopted child, of the
principal applicant or of his spouse, who at the time of application is adult
(over eighteen years of age), not married, and proves that at the time of
application he or she is not economically active and is principally dependent
on the main applicant.
·A parent or grandparent is eligible, who proves
that at the time of application, that he or she is not economically active and
is principally dependent on the principal applicant.
·An adult child of the primary applicant or the
spouse of the principal applicant who has been certified by a medical
professional/authority as having a disability.
What are the financial
requirements for the CBI program?
The primary applicant has
the following financial requirements during the naturalization process under
the Malta IIP:
1.Donate €650,000 to the NDSF (National
Development and Social Fund)
2.Invest in stocks, bonds or other special purpose
vehicles qualified by Identity Malta, for at least €150,000
3.Purchase a residential real estate with a
minimum value of €350,000, or lease a residen-tial real estate in Malta for five
years, at an annual rent of at least €16,000
4.Get a global health insurance coverage of at
least €50,000, for all named applicants
How much has to be added
to the contribution per dependent?
·Each dependent child 0-17 years: €25,000
·Each dependent between 18-26 years, single and
financially dependent on the primary applicant: €50,000
·Each dependent aged 55 or over, residing with
the main applicant and financially dependent on the applicant: €50,000.
What is the minimum
investment term? Can I sell my property after that term without buying/leasing
a new one? Is it the same with the RBI program?
Answer: The citizens must
maintain the investments (bonds + real estate ownership or rental) for five
years. Regarding the residency by investment program, the investor must keep
the investment for at least five years either until he or she becomes a citizen
or decides to change the resident status.
What are the associated
fees to apply for the CBI program?
Due Diligence Fees:
·Principal applicant: €7,500
·Each Dependent child aged 0-17: €3,000
·Each Dependent aged 18-26: €5,000
·Each Dependent aged 55 or above: €5,000.
What are the financial
requirements of the RBI program?
·Investments in highly reliable Maltese
government bonds of €250,000, for 5 years
·Contribution to the State Fund of Malta in the
amount of €30,000.
·Purchase or rent a property in Malta for
1.Purchase: not less than €320,000 for a property
situated in the North of Malta, or €270,000 for a property located in Gozo or
the South of Malta.
2.Rental: €12,000 per annum for a property
situated in Malta; or €10,000 per annum for a property located in Gozo or the
south of Malta)
Do the RBI program's
contribution and fees cover the whole family?
The €30,000 contribution
covers the main applicant, spouse, and children of the main applicant/spouse at
the application stage. A further contribution of €5,000 is applicable for every
parent or grandparent of the main applicant or spouse at the application stage.
What are the associated
fees to apply for the RBI program?
There is a non-refundable
due diligence fee of €5,500.
How much of the total
investment must be paid with the application in both cases? Do I have to pay
for the property, make the contribution, and invest in bonds before applying or
only after receiving an approval?
Answer: As an official
agent of the Maltese investor's immigration programs, we help the clients to
prepare the proper documents for the application. For the citizenship program
the investor must also transfer the professional fees, the government due
diligence fees, a non-refundable contribution of €10,000 as a partial payment
of the NDSF contribution in exchange for the Letter of Approval in
Within four months of the Letter of Approval in Principle, proof
must be submitted to Identity Malta that the applicant completed the real
estate purchase or fulfilled the lease, as well as completed the requisite
€150,000 investment required by law.
Once the Letter of Approval in Principle
has been issued, Malta Immigration will be able to grant the applicant and
family members a National Visa (for a period 90 days).
It allows them to visit
Malta to take the Oath of Allegiance, complete any property viewings to
purchase and provide their biometric data (fingerprints and iris scan). If the
applicant met all the conditions, within two years but not earlier than six
months from the date of the application, the authority issues the Certificate
of Naturalization, which is needed to obtain the passports.
For the residency, a non-refundable
€5,500 fee must be paid. When the Letter of Approval in Principle is issued,
the €24,500 contribution is due.
Is the donation to the
Answer: Donation is not
Are the RBI beneficiaries
required to live in Malta for a determinate time per year?
Answer: The minimum number
of days to be spent in Malta is not specified.
Must the CBI applicants
live in Malta before, during, and after the
The minimum number of days
to be spent in Malta is not specified. Citizens of Malta can live, work or
stay, wherever they want to.
In which steps of the
process, the applicant must be physically present in Malta (in both programs)?
During the process, the
applicants must visit Malta to provide their biometric data, and they must
personally pick up the passports.
Are the names of those
approved in the CBI program published somewhere?
The Government of Malta
every year publishes the names of all foreign citizens who naturalized for
citizenship in the official Gazette. The Gazette publishes the names of all
naturalized citizens and IIP citizens combined in December of the following
Does Malta recognize dual
citizenship? Can citizenship be revoked?
Malta recognizes dual
citizenship since 2000.
Yes, the Maltese
citizenship can be lost through deprivation if:
1.The citizenry was acquired
using fraud, false representation or the concealment of any material fact.
2.The citizen has shown
himself or herself by act or speech to be disloyal or disaffected towards the
President or the Government of Malta.
3.The citizen engaged,
unlawfully traded either communicated with an enemy or associated with any
business motivated by the willingness to assist an enemy in a war.
4.The citizen has, within
seven years after becoming naturalized as a Maltese citizen, been sentenced to
a punishment of not less than twelve months in prison.
5.The citizen has been
ordinarily resident in foreign countries for a continuous period of seven
years. During such time, he or she has neither been in the service of the
Republic or of an international organization of which the Government of Malta
was a member nor given a notice in writing to the Minister of his or her
intention to retain citizenship of Malta.
Malta has one of the
stringiest due diligence processes among the CBI and RBI programs. How can
Discus Holdings guarantee success to their clients? What's your success rate in
Our headquarters is in
Malta; we are a local company there with the experience of long years. Our
success rate is 100% because our clients must go through a strict preliminary
due diligence check. It is our responsibility to prepare the documents and the
applicants for the process, and we do our job very well.
Is Discus Holdings a
government-licensed service provider in Malta?
Naturally, Discus Holdings
was among the first immigration and investment consultancies to obtain the
license from the government, you can check it on the official list of service
providers in the relevant section of the Identity Malta's website.
What do you offer over
other providers in Malta? Why should a client pick Discus Holdings?
Most of our competitors
entered the citizenship and residency by investment sector only a couple of
years ago. Meanwhile, our colleagues have more than 25 years of experience.
Even before the trend of obtaining second citizenship started, we have been
already one of the leading European company forming and tax planning service
providers in Central Europe.
We have the contacts, and we are official agents
of the programs. We take the success of your application personally. Ask for a
free consultation to check the quality of our service.