CaribbeanEditor's PicksIntel & Data

Grenada CBI Application Volume Through the Roof in Q3, Nearly Triples Y-o-Y

Application volume for Grenada’s Citizenship by Investment Program, the only CIP in the Caribbean to still welcome Russian applicants, shattered every previous record in the third quarter of the year, figures released this week show.

Grenada, which is among the world’s most transparent CIPs and usually reports every quarter, this week released quarterly statistical reports for both Q2 and Q3 after, having skipped reporting in Q2. A fair assumption had been that this delay was owed to the change in government in Grenada this summer and the attendant alterations in CIU leadership. Figures released this week, however, indicate the delay may have been attributable to the CIU simply being inordinately occupied during the last several months, having been suddenly inundated by applications:

The Grenada CIP received a record 462 applications in Q3, nearly three times as many as in the preceding quarter and a figure 164% greater than the previous quarterly record from Q4 2021. Applications have been rising sharply for five consecutive months, indicating Q4 will be record-breaking as well.

While Grenada - as a matter of policy - does not publish statistics on the nationality of its applicants, the sharp uptick is, in all likelihood, a direct result of the country's late April decision to go against the regional current by declining to exclude Russians based on nationality alone, making the Grenada CIP the region's only remaining option open to both Russians and Belarusians. Since reopening to Russians, Grenada has seen monthly application volume more than quadruple.

While Grenada received 462 applications in Q3, it processed only 86 (85 approvals and one rejection). The Q4 statistical report, once it becomes available early in the new year, will reveal whether Grenada's CIU has been able to sufficiently ramp up processing capacity to handle the unprecedented flow of applications. If it doesn't, Grenada CBI applicants can expect large backlogs to lead to months of delays, especially because the application volume is still trend upwards.

There is little to indicate other Caribbean countries will reopen to Russians in the immediate future to "alleviate" Grenada's CIU of application volume. Seeing the extent to which Grenada is vacuuming up Russian capital, however, the other four CIPs in the region will no doubt be tempted to reverse course as well (indeed, Antigua & Barbuda briefly did, but quickly changed its mind again). That temptation, however, has thus far been tempered by the admonitions of bigger countries not to provide succor for Russian money.

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Presuming rejection rates and per-applicant investments close to the historical average, Grenada can expect to raise (through a mix of donations, real estate investment, and government fees) about EC$213 million (US$79m) from the 462 applications it received in Q3. If Grenada receives a similar amount of applications also in Q4, its 2022 total earnings from the program would be more than double those of 2021, itself a record year.

Real estate option the big winner

The CIP's real estate developers will be the chief beneficiaries of the massively augmented demand for Grenadian citizenship. 69% of applications so far in 2022 were filed under the real estate option, which also accounts for 73% of the money raised through the program (excluding fees).

That share is set to increase sharply in Q4, however, because 81% of applications filed in Q3 (practically none of which have been processed yet) were based on real estate investment and because the amounts raised under this option typically exceed donations amounts by at least a third.

No matter which dimension considered, 2022 will be a sixth consecutive record year for Grenada's CIP. The program will set new records for

  • Applications received
    2022 is already a record year in this respect, and Grenada is likely to receive a four-figured number of applications in 2022, a new milestone for the program.
  • Approvals
    Grenada need only approve another 78 of its several hundred pending applications this year to break this record. Barring a sudden decision to reject the majority of applicants, this record will be shattered this year.
  • New citizens
    Grenada typically issues about three citizenships per approved application.
  • Investments, donations, and fees
    Grenada is likely to at least double the 2021 result. If the CIU is able to expand processing capacity to meet the demand, it could triple revenue.

Christian Henrik Nesheim AdministratorKeymaster

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.

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