“We believe in CIP, we think it’s a great option, but we don’t ever want to become dependent on CIP,” emphasized Prime Minister Allen Chastanet of Saint Lucia during a speech at the Global Citizenship Conference in London last week.
He stressed the importance of avoiding the use of CIP-funds for recurrent expenditure and the concomitant “need to continuously drive numbers every year,” and explained this was the reason Saint Lucia saves up its program revenues in a national economic fund which has “nothing to do with the government and nothing to do with my recurrent expenditure.”
This meant, he declared, that Saint Lucia would “never lower our standards on the program” for the sake of competition with other jurisdictions.
“Numbers is not our game. We know that there are, clearly, clients out there who are interested in getting a passport for security and just want to get the quickest and cheapest option on the market. That’s not Saint Lucia,” said Chastanet, hastening to add that his country’s CIP was price-competitive and efficient in its processing, but that “that’s not really what we’re about”.
Chastanet indicated Saint Lucia was not merely looking to cash in on donations from the CIP but, rather, to attract long-term investment from those who “see Saint Lucia as their future”.
To that end, he continued, “we’re creating a residency program that will allow people to have a non-domicile tax rate,” confirming that plans for such a program – first announced in June 2017 and later left on the backburner due to objections from the EU and OECD – remains a priority.
Following negotiations with the EU and OECD, Saint Lucia had designed a territorial tax structure, “which means that any funds that you earn outside of our country are no longer taxable; we’re only going to tax you on what you earn in Saint Lucia.”
Want to know more about the Saint Lucia CIP? To see statistics, recent articles, official links, and more, please visit its Program Page. To see which firms can assist with applications to the program, visit the Residence & Citizenship by Investment Company Directory.
Christian Henrik Nesheim is the founder and editor of Investment Migration Insider, the #1 magazine – online or offline – for residency and citizenship by investment. He is an internationally recognized expert, speaker, documentary producer, and writer on the subject of investment migration, whose work is cited in the Economist, Bloomberg, Fortune, Forbes, Newsweek, and Business Insider. Norwegian by birth, Christian has spent the last 16 years in the United States, China, Spain, and Portugal.