Europe’s newest citizenship by investment program – which, so far, has approved only one hospitality development, a ski-resort hotel – has formalized the requirements for citizenship by investment in alternative development projects; specifically, agriculture, fisheries, and wood processing.
A policy document issued on the Secretariat for Development Projects’ website outlines “conditions to be fulfilled for development projects in the fields of agriculture, fisheries, and wood processing” in connection with the Montenegro CIP.
The investment requirements are as follows:
- The investment made must be in the primary production of agricultural and fishery products or in the processing of agricultural and fishery products or wood processing;
- The investment in primary agricultural production is at least EUR 2,000,000 in the processing of agricultural and fishery products in the amount of at least EUR 3,500,000 and in wood processing in the amount of at least EUR 4,000,000;
- The development project will employ at least ten people in primary production agricultural and fishery products, at least 20 in the processing of agricultural and fishery products, or at least 20 in wood processing;
The projects, furthermore, must not avail themselves of subsidies otherwise available to them through Montenegrin government policy or EU pre-accession funds, and must not be financed – in whole or in part – by international donations or funds.
Want to know more about the Montenegro Citizenship by Investment program? To see recent articles, FAQs, official links, and more, visit its Program Page. To see which firms can assist with applications to the program, visit the Residence & Citizenship by Investment Company Directory.
Prospective developers must provide a business plan with estimates of the investment size and expected return, as we as proof of ownership in the form of a title deed or lease contract with a duration of no less than ten years.
In addition to a variety of detailed regulations – accessible in their entirety here (in Montenegrin) – the government will also make further considerations when selecting projects, such as whether it can help Montenegro rely less on imports, whether it can turn idle agricultural lands into productive fields, whether it upholds high environmental standards, whether it enables the introduction of new technologies, and so on.
What isn’t clear from the document is whether prospective citizens may co-invest in these alternative projects (for example, four applicants investing EUR 500,000 each in a fish farm) or if each prospective applicant must launch his own project.
Presumably, co-investment is the idea. If not, market forces dictate that Montenegro’s CIP may as well bid a farewell to farms.
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 14 years in the United States, China, and Spain.