Hong Kong CIES Receives 339 Applications in First Three Months

The Hong Kong government announced on July 3 that it had received over 300 applications for its Capital Investment Entrant Scheme (CIES) since its launch on March 1, 2024, and anticipates accruing HK$10bn ($1.3bn) worth of investment from current interest.

The revamped scheme offers a route to Hong Kong residency for individuals who invest at least HK$30m in permissible assets.

As of June 30, the government had received 339 visa applications under CIES. Three individuals obtained formal approval after investing a minimum of HK$30m.

An additional 88 applicants received approval in principle, which grants them a 180-day visitor visa to make the investment. In total, CIES has garnered over 3,700 inquiries.

“The New CIES brings a vast pool of talents to Hong Kong, attracting successful businessmen and innovative entrepreneurs,” said Alpha Lau, Director-General of InvestHK. She added that the government expects to draw around HK$10bn to the city “if more than 300 applications are all approved.”

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The scheme’s performance in June marked an improvement compared to the previous months. By the end of May, CIES had received 251 applications, with 43 receiving approval in principle, as revealed by the city’s Financial Services and Treasury Chief.

This means that in June alone, the scheme attracted an additional 88 applications (slightly higher than the monthly average of about 84). The government issued 45 approvals in principle, more than the previous three months combined.

However, these figures fall short of the government’s initial expectations for the scheme. According to Secretary for Financial Services and Treasury Christopher Hui last December, the government estimated that CIES would bring in HK$120bn annually, with about 4,000 people participating per year. The government based these estimates on past trends from the older iteration of the scheme.

Earlier data revealed that, after a strong start to the program, by the end of May, the CIES had received 251 applications. The majority of applicants were citizens of Vanuatu and Guinea-Bissau in West Africa.

While the government did not disclose the countries of origin for the three approved applicants, InvestHK stated that of the 339 total applications, 325 came from “foreign nationals or persons with permanent residence overseas,” and the remaining 14 were from “Macao Special Administrative Region residents and Chinese residents of Taiwan.”

Successful CIES entrants and their dependents can stay in Hong Kong for a maximum of two years, with the option to request extensions of up to three years. After residing continuously in the city for seven years, they may apply for permanent residency.

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Ahmad Abbas AdministratorAuthorSubscriberParticipant
Director of Content Services , Investment Migration Insider

Ahmad Abbas is Director of Content Services at Investment Migration Insider and an 8-year veteran of the investment migration industry.

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