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Navigating the Growing Pains of Caribbean CBI: Antigua & Barbuda’s Path to Industry Leadership

ClientReferrals
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Patrick Peters, CEO of ClientReferrals, discusses how Antigua & Barbuda’s stability and integrity make it the optimal citizenship by investment (CBI) option.


Over the past twelve months, I have heard and read claims that we have reached the end of the road for the Caribbean CBI programs. 

I politely—yet firmly—disagree with that sentiment. This is the normal evolution for almost any industry, especially finance-related ones.

You just have to study the history of banking or audit regulations, cryptocurrencies, or the stock markets to see that the Caribbean CIP industry is simply a young industry in the midst of a growth spurt. 

As most of you know, I’m quite tall, so I can tell you firsthand that growth spurts come with growing pains. They also come with awkward and lanky teenage years and uncomfortable flights, but that’s not important here…

The current scandals of the Caribbean CBI industry are exactly that – growing pains. And growing pains suck. They hurt and make you think something worse is happening while they’re in full flow; eventually, though, they go away. 

The magical thing is that one comes out bigger and stronger after they pass.

In the Caribbean CBI case, however, the problems won’t disappear purely over time, not on their own at least. That’s the main, and most crucial, difference here. 

These problems will not go away by simply waiting them out. The Caribbean Five heads of state and their trusted colleagues at the CIUs and CIP boards are at an inflection point where they have to make difficult decisions and, more importantly, enforce them. Only then can these growing pains lead us to a stronger, more mature industry with some integrity.

Luckily, my interactions with the Antigua and Barbuda decision-makers give me complete confidence that the future is bright for the industry. While I cannot claim in good conscience that Antigua and Barbuda has been a model of perfection, I can confidently state that they manage a program of integrity and stability. 

Thanks largely to PM Browne and CEO Ms. Donovan, who have been actively involved in the program for over ten years, we have avoided most potential pitfalls and stood tall against the lure of short-term profits over long-term reputation. 

I commend the Antigua and Barbuda decision-makers for not giving in to abolishing their five-day residency requirement, something I strongly urge the other four countries to implement. 

In addition to adding credibility to the CBI program and generating tourism dollars for the host-country, this regulation allows applicants the flexibility to visit Antigua at least once within a five-year period at their own convenience. It also gives applicants the chance to get to know their new country, have entry stamps on their passports, and even avail themselves of value-added services that can only be achieved in person on island, allowing them to benefit even more from their citizenship.

I also commend the duo for operating the most efficient and stable application process at the moment. My motto for the Antiguan CIU is “Fast processing is the best marketing,” and although Ms. Donovan is tired of hearing me say it, I can tell they take it to heart.

Immigration professionals are now taking notice that the Antigua and Barbuda CIP offers the safest route to citizenship for their VIP clients and that long-term reputation matters a lot for those of us who plan to be around for years or decades more. 

The beauty is that, for families of 2 or more, the official non-refundable contribution options in Antigua (the NDF and UWI) are at the same price or more affordable than the contribution options in other countries.

The country also offers one of the most developed real estate markets in the entire Caribbean. Typically, a real estate purchase there, either for CBI purposes or post-citizenship, is a safer investment because it offers a more realistic exit strategy.

At this moment, there is almost no reason to choose a citizenship program other than the Antigua and Barbuda CIP. 

ClientReferrals feels very optimistic right now. Antigua and Barbuda has been our dancing partner for ten years (longer than most marriages!) and everybody is now realizing what we’ve seen all along – she’s the true Belle of the Ball. And this one won’t revert back to a pumpkin at midnight. She’s here to stay.

If you have worked with us on the Antigua CBI program before – thank you for your trust and your business. If you are exploring the possibility of promoting the Antigua and Barbuda CIP more actively, please contact us.

ClientReferrals is the program leader in terms of knowledge, responsiveness, and professionalism. We strictly serve immigration professionals, firms of all sizes, and don’t work with clients directly. Give us the opportunity to show you what makes Antigua and Barbuda the best program and why we have been its leading service provider since the program’s inception. Come dance with us in Antigua, you won’t regret it, I promise.

Contact ClientReferrals through their website or directly at enquiries@clientreferrals.com