Investment migration people in the news this week include:
- Christian Kälin of Henley & Partners
- David Lesperance of Lesperance & Associates
- Justin Hawley
- Les Khan of the Saint Kitts & Nevis CIU
- George Maalouf of Real-21
- Tiago Camara of PT Golden Visa
Neue Zürcher Zeitung‘s Sunday edition yesterday ran a portrait interview with Henley & Partners chairman Christian Kälin, in which they raised a number of the types of questions we have come to expect from mainstream outlets, as well as some of a more original variety:
NZZ am Sonntag: Your criticism of the system of citizenship is radical: Do you want to abolish this important pillar of our political constitution?
Kälin: Direct democracy in Switzerland is a special case that cannot be transferred to other countries. Nowhere else is there such a say [Mitsprache] in politics. Rather, most of the people in the world live in autocratic states. A citizen in Vietnam, for example, primarily has duties, but hardly any political rights. Even in western democracies, people understand their citizenship primarily as a cost-benefit calculation: How much tax do I pay? And what do I get in the form of social benefits and infrastructure? Political participation, on the other hand, is of much less importance than is believed.
A powerful second passport offers many benefits but potential investors and high-net worth individuals must not fall prey to fake agents, said Justin Hawley, the first Ambassador of St Kitts and Nevis to the UAE.[…]
“We constantly get phone calls from prospective citizens asking about St Kitts and Nevis and the programme. They ask us about the agents. We stay neutral and don’t recommend any agent. But we advise them to choose an agent, who is officially licensed by the Government of St Kitts and Nevis. It is important,” he said on the sidelines of the International Residency and Citizenship by Investment Expo held in Abu Dhabi.
People can check at ciu.gov.kn for the authorised agents and also find blacklisted companies.
“And don’t be afraid to call the embassy,” added the former Consul General of St Kitts and Nevis Consulate in Dubai.
Meanwhile, Les Khan, CEO, Citizenship by Investment Unit of St Kitts and Nevis, said that certain agents have been spreading fake news to bring disrepute to the country and the programmes.
“I am aware that certain agents are trying to get clients to move away from St Kitts and Nevis by telling them that their passports will be taken away after 10 years, which is not a fact. People will not lose their citizenship after 10 years. The government will never do that,” Khan added.[…]
George Maalouf, CEO of Real-21 Citizenship by Investment, said his offices in Abu Dhabi and Dubai have started receiving new requests for an alternate citizenship.
“The demand for citizenship by investment programmes has begun to pick up. People have realised the importance of having the freedom to travel, doing business, safety and security.”[…]
Separately, Tiago Camara of PT Golden Visa, who presented the benefits of investing in Portugal, noted that Chinese continue to constitute 60 per cent of the clients.
“We also have applicants from countries facing political unrest and economic crisis. We have people from South Africa, Lebanon and Hong Kong. We have people from India and Pakistan who wish to relocate.”
As we have become increasingly accustomed to over the last year, David Lesperance of Lesperance & Associates appeared in a number of news outlets over the past week:
- The Street: Cryptocurrency Price Check: Huobi to Bail on China Users After Crackdown
David Lesperance, managing partner of immigration and tax adviser Lesperance & Associates, said he had been predicting China’s actions for a while as the government moved to close out all potential competition to the incoming e-yuan.
“However, it was jarring to actually see my prediction to come through,” he said.
“All the inquires I am receiving are from Chinese and Hong-Kong-based crypto holders on what strategies they can institute to protect their crypto assets” and their “physical persons and families.”
- Forkast: Who in the world should worry about China’s new crypto ban?
David Lesperance, a Canadian immigration and tax advisor who works with many Chinese clients, predicts that the new clampdowns will effectively divide cryptocurrency holders into two camps.
“One group will act to get their crypto assets and themselves an escape plan to avoid the complete control of the Chinese government,” Lesperance told Forkast.News. “Another group will not act and will be sentencing themselves to being under the thumb financially and physically of the central government authorities.”
“Making cryptocurrency transactions in China illegal is a much anticipated move to eliminate any potential competition to the government’s new incoming sovereign digital currency,” David Lesperance, managing director of international tax and immigration advisory firm Lesperance & Associates, said via email.
“The digital yuan is part of an all-encompassing series of actions by the Chinese government to have complete control over the lives of its citizens,” he said.
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.