In a statement issued on its website, the Saint Kitts & Nevis Citizenship by Investment Unit (CIU) says it has “implemented a pause on citizenship application files from all applicants from Russia and Belarus, irrespective of whether or not they are on the sanctioned list. This pause is effective immediately. “
The blanket ban on Russian and Belarusian nationals notwithstanding, the CIU finally added that it would “continue to work closely with its Due Diligence companies to ensure that Russian and Belarussian names are continually being monitored against these sanctioned lists and to note any changes that may occur in the future.”
Russians and Belarusians have already been excluded from the investment migration programs of Malta, Greece, Portugal, Antigua & Barbuda, and Dominica. Last month, just prior to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the UK Home Office took the drastic and widely criticized step of scrapping its investor visa altogether over concerns it may attract tainted Russian wealth, despite Russian applicants’ accounting for less than a fifth of the program’s participants.
Russian and Belarusian applicants are still welcome to apply for citizenship by investment in Turkey, Grenada, and Saint Lucia.
While one of the banks working with the Saint Lucia CIP has decided to no longer receive payments from Russians, the program’s authorities say the program remains open to Russian investment through its other banking partner. Yesterday, Dr. Ernest Hilaire, the Minister responsible for citizenship by investment in Saint Lucia, told local reporters that he didn’t think it would be a good idea to “ban anybody simply because they happen to be born in Russia.”
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.