Unsung Programs Part 6: Mauritius Investor PR – Instant PR for US$375,000

About the Unsung IM Programs series

About two dozen “core” programs dominate investment migration marketing materials – and news sites like this one. But there are literally hundreds of capital-based immigration programs out there. We intentionally use the term “capital-based” because not all the programs covered in this series are based on investments. Many are, but others are based on donations, income, or net worth.

But they are all, one way or another, based on capital. Capital that you must either invest, donate, earn, or simply have.

Hence, capital-based immigration programs.

The great bulk of capital-based immigration programs rarely gets any attention. That’s regrettable because there’s a smorgasbord of high-quality ones in all price ranges; many practically free.

In this series, therefore, we’re highlighting a number of more obscure programs that we think have merit for some demographic groups.

We’ll go through programs in each of the IMI Program Pages categories:

  • Direct Citizenship Programs
    Programs that offer citizenship within months in exchange for investments or donations, with minor/no physical presence requirements.
  • Semi-Direct Citizenship Programs
    Programs that offer citizenship in exchange for investments following a 1-2 year period, with minor/no physical presence requirements. 
  • Golden Visa Programs
    Programs that offer residence permits within months in exchange for passive investments, with limited physical presence requirements.
  • Independent Means Visas
    Programs that offer residence permits within months to those who can demonstrate income or personal wealth above a certain level, usually requiring that the holder not take up employment locally.
  • Active Investor Visas
    Programs that offer residence permits within months to those who physically relocate to start and/or run a business. Startup and entrepreneur visas fall under this category.

Mauritius Investor Permanent Residency Program

The Mauritius Permanent Residency Program for Investors provides immediate permanent residency status for approved applicants who invest a minimum of US$375,000 in a designated real estate project. 

After seven years of continuous residency (five years for nationals of Commonwealth countries), applicants are eligible for citizenship in Mauritius. 

Applicants who invest at least US$500,000 are eligible for fast-track naturalization in two years, though stricter physical residence requirements apply in this case.

A tropical archipelago in the Indian Ocean, Mauritius is home to 1.3 million people, who generate a GDP per capita of about US$30,000 (in PPP terms), making the country one of Africa’s wealthiest. The country enjoys a year-round mild climate and is famed for its picturesque turquoise-water beaches (protected from the open sea by the world’s third-largest coral reef, which surrounds the island) and dramatic precipices, formed by volcanic eruptions some 8 million years ago.

Panorama of Mauritius Island, Mauritius

Characterized by tremendous cultural diversity, thanks to centuries of changing colonial hands (between the Portuguese, Dutch, French, and British) and its position between India and Africa, Mauritius has no formal official language, though both French and English are de facto official languages and most people speak Mauritian Creole at home. Ethnically, Indians make up the lion’s share of the population.

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The country sports a highly developed, modern economy, buoyed by a generally business-friendly regulatory and tax environment: The top rate of both personal and corporate income tax is 15%.

Port Louis, the capital of Mauritius

Terms and Requirements for Mauritius’ Permanent Residency

To obtain immediate permanent residency in Mauritius, applicants must invest at least US$375,000 in one of the following real estate investment categories:

  • Integrated Resort Scheme (IRS): Projects with area bigger than 10 hectares;
  • Real Estate Scheme (RES): Projects smaller than 10 hectares on freehold land;
  • Property Development Scheme (PDS): Social and ecological impact-focused projects;
  • Smart City Scheme (SCS): Multipurpose eco-communities;
  • Invest Hotel Scheme (IHS): New or existing hotel units.
  • Ground + 2 Apartment Scheme (G+2): Condominium developments with at least two floors above ground.

Permanent residence fees of $1,735 for the main applicant and $1,160 for each dependent also apply.

Upon approval, applicants receive immediate permanent residence permits in Mauritius. The permit is valid for 20 years and is renewable as long as the investment is upheld.

IMI Pros who can help with Mauritius residency

Path to citizenship in Mauritius through the Investor Permanent Residency Program

It is important to point out that while residency in Mauritius, according to the Citizenship Act, does provide a path to citizenship, obtaining citizenship is difficult in practice, according to specialists. “May apply”, in this context, should not be taken to mean “will be granted”.

According to the Mauritian Citizenship Act, Commonwealth citizens who have lived in the country for five years, with 12 months of continuous residence for the last year before making the application, are eligible to apply for citizenship.

If the applicant is not a Commonwealth citizen, he may apply for citizenship after seven years of uninterrupted residence. The applicant needs to be physically present in Mauritius for 12 months before making the application.

Applicants who invest at least US$500,000 and who are physically present for two consecutive years without any absence from the country may apply for citizenship after just two years of residency in the country.

The processing and approval of citizenship can take up to 12 months in Mauritius. The applicant needs to have good knowledge of English, French, or a local language and there is no restriction on dual citizenship.

The Mauritian passport is among Africa’s strongest travel documents, and affords visa-free travel to 147 destinations, including the Schengen area countries.

Qualifying real estate examples:

Mauritius also offers Active Investor and Independent Means Visas, which let you qualify for temporary residence permits with a three-year path to permanent residency and a seven-year path to citizenship to those who can demonstrate an annual income of at least US$18,000 or who invest at least US$35,000. Learn more about the Mauritius Retirement Visa and the Mauritius Active Investor Visas.

Other articles in this series