Basseterre, Sept 18 (Bernama) — St Kitts and Nevis has been recognised as the best CBI destination in the 2023 edition of the CBI Index, trumping 11 other countries with active citizenship by investment (CBI) programmes.
The country, which has made several sweeping changes to its CBI Programme in the last year, took top honours, scoring 77 points in a race between nations such as Dominica, Saint Lucia, Grenada, Antigua & Barbuda, Malta, Vanuatu, Turkey, Egypt, Austria, Cambodia, and Jordan.
The 2023 CBI Index noted that St Kitts and Nevis has been the most proactive CBI nation in the Caribbean when it comes to responding to security concerns raised by Western nations. The country ‘stands out for taking immediate and decisive action based on the ‘Six Principles’ framework. Moreover, it underscores a political will to take a proactive leadership role in the long-term sustainability of the industry through good governance, enhanced due diligence, and regional harmonisation with international partners.’
Now in its seventh year, the CBI Index utilises its established nine-pillar index architecture to provide investors with a data-driven framework with which to measure the performance and appeal of global CBI programmes. The nine pillars include Standard of Living, Freedom of Movement, Minimum Investment Outlay, Mandatory Travel or Residence, Citizenship Timeline, Ease of Processing, Due Diligence, Family and Certainty of Product.
St Kitts and Nevis scored full marks in Mandatory Travel or Residence, Ease of Processing, Due Diligence and Certainty of Product pillars.
The Mandatory Travel or Residence pillar examines the travel or residence conditions imposed on applicants both before and after the granting of citizenship. St Kitts and Nevis does not have travel or minimum residency requirements for its programme, making it straightforward for busy entrepreneurs and global citizens to attain citizenship in the country.
The Ease of Processing pillar measures the end-to-end complexity of the CBI application process. The overall effortlessness of the application process is a particularly vital component, and the promise of a smooth, hassle-free process can generate readiness to engage with a programme.
The Due Diligence pillar measures a programme’s integrity. St Kitts and Nevis retains its top position from the previous year due to the Citizenship by Investment Unit’s changes made as part of a rapid implementation of the ‘Six Principles,’ which include mandatory interviews and measures to stop financial irregularities in the real estate option to safeguard the Programme’s reputation.
The Certainty of Product pillar encompasses a range of factors that measure a programme’s certainty across five different dimensions including longevity, popularity and renown, stability, reputation, and adaptability. As the only country to attain a perfect score in this category, St Kitts and Nevis’ performance reflects not only its swift response to the recent unprecedented international pressure imposed on all Caribbean CBI programmes, but its continuous proactive approach to instituting industry leading changes.
“I am thrilled to once again to have the St Kitts and Nevis CBI Programme recognised as the best in the industry,” said Michael Martin, Head of the St Kitts and Nevis Citizenship by Investment Unit.
“This recognition by the CBI Index is another confirmation of why St Kitts and Nevis should be the first choice for any global investor. For four decades we have crafted solid, innovative and sustainable investment solutions, giving investors the confidence to attain their goals in the global arena.”
St Kitts and Nevis continues to provide an exemplary model to the investment migration industry. The country made bold changes to its Programme at the end of 2022 and further changes in July, the latter changes convincingly addressed security concerns raised by the United Kingdom, the European Union and previously the United States.
The country hosted four of the Caribbean’s CBI nations, along with a delegation from the United States, who all agreed on 6 Principles to be followed by the Caribbean nations. While many of the security measures were already in place as part of St Kitts and Nevis’ due diligence processes, the country was one of the first to institute mandatory interviews with applicants aged 16 years and older.
St Kitts and Nevis has also tightened regulations around how Authorised Agents and International Marketing Agents operate, requiring them to have their businesses registered under the laws of St Kitts and Nevis and limiting how they may advertise the St Kitts and CBI Programme internationally.
Other legislative changes include increased minimum investment thresholds, revised dependant eligibility, and the closing of loopholes for real estate investment options.
St Kitts and Nevis has shown the most commitment to upholding the integrity and reputation its CBI programme in the international arena.
The CBI Index is a rating system designed to assess the performance and appeal of active CBI programmes across a diverse range of indicators and measures. Its purpose is to bring value to the CBI industry by providing a data-driven and practical tool for appraising programmes and facilitating the decision-making process for individuals considering them.
The CBI Index stands as one of the most recognised and reputable rating tools in the investment migration industry and has a reputation for providing valuable industry insights and knowledge.