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Residence by Investment

Citizen Lane Launches Hungarian Residence Program

Citizen Lane is pleased to announce that it is now expanding its product portfolio and will now provide is expertise and advisory services for those interested in obtaining the Hungarian Residence Program.

Hungary offers a high quality of life to its residents with good work opportunities and a high Human Development Index; furthermore, residents and citizens of Hungary earn all the benefits of residing in an European Union member country that is also a Schengen Country. Residents of Hungary are free to travel, work, and live throughout the EU and Schengen area.

For non-EU citizens the way to obtain residence is through investment. The Hungarian Residence Program requires the purchase of 300,000 euros worth of specialty zero coupon bonds to be  held for five years, until the amount is returned to the investor. Extra benefits of residence through investment to Hungary are that the country does not have a physical residency requirement after securing their permit, and the applicants family members are also granted permanent residence permits at no additional cost.

While the investment may be simple, there are a few steps involved in securing permanent residency to Hungary and therefore the right to migrate to Hungary if desired. By using Citizen Lane as your trusted immigration advisor we will handle the entire process of the application, using our expertise an our trusted immigration advisors to ensure the entire process runs smoothly.

The Quality of Nationality Index

For many people around the world the citizenship they hold is solely the one they obtained through birthright. Citizenship comes with opportunities, and unfortunately some country’s provide their citizens with substantially better opportunities than others. So how do you measure the quality of citizenship? Until recently it has been very difficult to quantify, but in 2011 the creation of The Henley & Partners – Kochenov Quality of Nationality Index (QNI), provided a may to measure and rank the quality of worldwide nationalities.


The quantification of the value of a nationality is important because in today’s age people are not stuck spending their life where they were born. We live in a mobile society where there are many opportunities for migration and relocation. The QNI is a valuable tool in the assessment of choosing a place of secondary citizenship and/or residence. Not happy with the ranking of where you live? Well, then by migrating to a country with a high QNI you can gain more rights to travel, and live a higher quality of life. Fortunately, nowadays birthright alone does not dictate the quality of a country you can call home.

About the Quality of Nationality Index

The Quality of Nationality Index provides a quantitative measure on the inherent value of citizenship, ranking nationalities on a scale of 0% to 100%. The measure weights internal factors and external factors. It gives a 40% weighting to internal factors and a 60% weighting to external factors.

Internal Factors
In assessing the internal factors that influence the quality of a nationality, the QNI looks at human development, economic prosperity, peace and stability. To measure human development the QNI uses the United Nations Development Programme Human Development Index. For economic strength the QNI utilizes the International Monetary Fund’s measure of a country’s share of world Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and the World Bank’s assessment of Purchasing Power Parity. Peace and stability is assessed using data from the annual Global Peace Index published by the Institute for Economics and Peace.

External Factors
In assessing the external factors that enhance the value of citizenship, the Quality of Nationality Index looks at the opportunities present in being a passport holder of one country to live, work and visit other countries without going through a lot of red tape. This part of the measure is a little more subjective. While real measurements from external sources are used in assessing the internal factors of the QNI there are not readily available measures for the external factors assessed in the QNI. The QNI provides the first and only source.

The external factors measured include the diversity of settlement freedom, the diversity of travel freedom and the weight of travel freedom. Settlement is considered possible when an adult national is allowed to work and stay in another country for at least 360 days without having to obtain a visa or with a visa on arrival. Diversity of travel freedom is measured using the Henley & Partners Visa Restrictions Index, which assesses the number of destinations that nationals of countries can have short-term tourist or business access to without having to obtain a visa. Weight of travel freedom is composed of the sum of countries’ weighted scores on human development and economic strength; it is a measure of the quality of the countries that can be visited either visa-free of with a visa on arrival. For example, having the ability to visit and work in Germany visa free would be more useful than having the same rights to Uganda.

Quality Tiers for Nationalities

The QNI uses the numerical ranking obtained by assessing the above factors and breaks worldwide nationalities into four tiers: very high quality, nationalities with a value of 50.0% and above; high quality, nationalities with a value of between 35.0% and 49.9%; medium quality, nationalities with a value of between 20.0% and 34.9%; and low quality for nationalities with a value of 19.9% or less.

Changes to the Quality of Nationality Index

The QNI is not a stagnant measure, it is constantly reassessed and as a result countries could seen the rankings of their countries change. There is a real possibility for a major change impacting the UK nationality the next time the QNI is updated in order to reflect the implications of Brexit. As the UK decouples itself from the European Union there could be changes to both the internal and external factors assessed in the QNI, and as a result the UK’s QNI could decrease. Note that the UK is currently ranked #11.

With the possibility for a big drop in the QNI rating of the UK, some Britons who would like to retire for instance at the Côte d’Azur, in Spain or Portugal would need to apply for a resident permit. For some it is worth considering citizenship in another EU country, in order to maintain their benefits. For a country with a high QNI ranking, the best bet is Germany. Germany is ranked #1 on the QNI and has maintained that top ranking since 2011.

A Good Solution: A Residence Permit in Germany

With the Germany passport carrying such a high Quality of Nationality Index ranking, for a consistent period, it is a very desirable passport. Residency through investment can also open the path to citizenship. In the case of Germany, after holding residency for at least 8 years it is possible to apply to become a citizen. At Citizen Lane Germany is one of the many countries that we are experts on the immigration through investment process and we can advise you on immigration options to Germany. Through a definitive process those who invest in and own a business that will have a positive impact on the Germany economy have a path to a residence permit in Germany, and German citizenship.

With Instability in Turkey Citizens Should Have a Back-Up Plan

The headlines in Turkey were shocking: a military coup was underway, threatening to overthrow the government. While the coup was unsuccessful, it had, and is still having, a major impact on the everyday lives of the people who call Turkey home. Hundreds died in the violence surrounding the coup, and now a government crackdown has left residents of Turkey on edge.

While the coup was unsuccessful, following the coup Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan is cracking down on anyone suspected to be involved in the attempt to overthrow the government. While these measures may be necessary, they can encroach upon the rights of many citizens. In situations like this, many residents who have the right to live in another country might look into exercising those rights. For those who don’t it is advisable to have a back-up plan.

Citizenship by Investment and Residence by Investment

Fortunately, there are many countries that allow citizenship by investment. The most desired countries are those with a more stable political climate such as Cyprus and Malta in Europe. Furthermore, many European mainland countries offer Residence by Investment solutions. Examples include Germany, where business investors invest in an own a company in the country. Through this route they can receive a residence permit in Germany. Portugal offers a Golden Residence Permit Program to those willing to invest at least 500,000 Euros in an apartment or house. Other examples include: Austria, Spain and the United Kingdom, which offer well-known residence schemes for High Net Worth Individuals.

Instability as a threat

For those who stay, here is an idea of that post-coup Turkey will look like, at least for the following few months. The government has declared a state of emergency. When a government declares a state of emergency it has increased rights, rights that some say limit personal freedoms and democracy. For one, the President has increased power. He can quickly pass laws that would normally require a long parliamentary approval process. He can ban the distribution of media including papers, fliers, magazines as well as any television and radio broadcasts.

The government can also implement curfews and restrictions on public events, declaring private and public areas off limits, they can restrict meetings and government-backed security forces do not need authorization to search people. While these security efforts are meant to tackle a looming “threat to democracy,” they impose changes and restrictions that may leave regular citizens feeling threatened.

A Residence Permit as a Safe Harbour

While this coup was unsuccessful, it brings to the forefront how lives can be changed in an instant and shows the benefit offered to those who hold the right to live and work in another country, a right that through investments, is accessible to many. In general it is highly advisable for residents of unstable countries to be prepared with a back-up plan that allows instant relocation to one’s safe harbour.

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As your personal partner for Citizenship and Residence Planning we are pleased to provide you with comprehensive advice.

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