The Bulgarian government recently passed a bill to implement several changes to their existing Permanent Residency and Citizenship by Investment programme. Up until now, the Bulgaria programme had required investors to purchase government bonds and hold them for five years. Government bonds will no longer be eligible for the programme.

Applicants will now be able to invest in various vehicles including exchange-traded funds, private equity, venture capital or hedge funds, REITs, or stocks traded in Bulgaria. The required investment amount remains the same at €512,000 for Permanent Residency. By doubling the investment with an additional €512,000 it is possible for applicants to fast-track to citizenship after just 18 months. With the overall investment for fast-track citizenship sitting at €1,024,000 + fees, this programme is one of the most cost-effective and quickest citizenship by investment programmes now available in the EU. As before, a five-year investment holding period remains, after which investors can liquidate their assets should they wish to. 

The second major change surrounds the process for the main applicant’s spouse. Previously, a spouse could only apply for citizenship once the main applicant had held Bulgarian citizenship for three years. This time frame has been reduced to one year, enhancing the overall speed at which a full family will become Bulgarian citizens. Children will continue to be eligible to apply for citizenship six months after the approval of the main applicant, as the previous law allowed. 

These positive new changes will come into action from 16th March 2021. As Bulgaria is a fully-fledged member of the European Union, Bulgarian citizens have the right to live, work and study in any other EU country. The Bulgarian passport will enable the holder to travel to 188 countries and territories worldwide, including visa-free access to Canada. 

For more details on the changes and the available options, please contact our experts. 

Tags: bulgaria, citizenship by investment 2021, citizenship invest, europe, passport


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