GOLD RUSH: Changes to Spain's 'Golden Visa' scheme
GOLD RUSH: Changes to Spain’s ‘Golden Visa’ scheme

THE Spanish government hopes amendments to its ‘golden visa’ scheme will attract more rich expats to Spain’s shores.

The scheme – which gives non-EU migrants residency in exchange for property investment – has had a slow start since its launch in 2013.

Just 530 investors have taken advantage of the scheme in the first 15 months.

The Chinese were mooted as a potential market for Spain but property experts in the Far East slammed the scheme, saying it was neither ‘attractive or easy enough to bother’.

New money-laundering laws introduced by Spanish banks also made the process less attractive.

But new ‘technical’ improvements should simplify the scheme and make property investment in particular more attractive and straightforward. These include rights to work in Spain, the acceptance of common-law family and dependents, a six-month visa issued on the placing of a deposit on property, visa renewal every five years, and the option of applying for a residency permit in Spain rather than in the country of origin.

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