In the beginning of the month, Indonesia revealed its brand new “golden visa” program that allows foreign investors to stay for any period of time between 5 and 10 years, depending on the investment they make. To obtain a 5-year stay permit, investors have to establish a business worth at least $2.5 million. In order to receive a 10-year stay permit, their investment needs to amount to $5 million. Foreign investors who don’t wish to open a business in Indonesia must deposit a fund of $350,000 for the 5-year and $700,000 for the 10-year stay permit.
These funds can be used for the purchase of Indonesian government bonds, shares of publicly traded companies, or saving/deposit accounts in Indonesia. Upon acquiring the golden visa, foreign nationals are not required to seek a temporary stay permit but will benefit from VIP security check-ups at airports, easier entry and exit processes when traveling. Following in Indonesia’s footsteps, Cambodia debuted its golden visa program, otherwise referred to as the “My 2nd Home” program, back in July 2022. Applicants must be 18 years or older and posses a capital investment of at least $100,000 in Cambodia.
Moreover, they are obliged to invest in an approved real estate project by the Cambodian government. This program does not demand Khmer language proficiency or academic qualifications from those who want to take part. Those who qualify will be issued a 10-year stay permit and become eligible for Cambodian citizenship after 5 years. Additionally, My 2nd Home Golden Visa Program provides its members with insurance coverage, VIP medical treatment, and unlimited entry/exit flexibility.
Thailand released its long-term residence visa program, commonly referred to as the “Golden Visa,” last year. valid for 10 years, this program allows for multiple entries and is available to foreign individuals in four categories: wealthy global citizens, wealthy pensioners, work-from-Thailand professionals, and highly-skilled professionals. Common requirements include health insurance with coverage of at least $50,000 or a $100,000 Thai bank account deposit.
However, eligibility demands vary depending on the category. Wealthy applicants must provide proof of at least $1 million in assets and proof of annual income of $80,000 for the past two years, with a minimum investment of $500,000 in Thai government bonds, foreign direct investment, Thai property, or any combination thereof. Retirees aged 50 and above must demonstrate at least $80,000 a year in personal income. Those between $40,000 and $80,000 a year must invest at least $250,000. For remote workers and highly-skilled foreign workers, the minimum personal income requisites are two years of professional earnings of at least $80,000 a year.
For those with earnings between $40,000 and $80,000 a year, proof of a Master’s degree, a valid form of intellectual property, or Series A investments are accepted. The single fee for the LTR program is 50,000 baht, and exclusive benefits include fast track service at international airports, multiple re-entry privileges, work permission, andoid tax exemptions for overseas income. Malaysia launched its premium visa program in the same period, granting visa holders 20-year stays that can be renewed for an additional 20-year duration. The criteria include a local fixed deposit placement of RM1M (US$213,500) with no withdrawals allowed on the principle value for the first year, and proof of offshore income of at least RM40,000 per month or RM480,000 a year.
A Letter of Good Conduct from the authorities of the visa holder’s present country of residence is also required, in addition to the one-off RM200,000 participation fee and an RM100,000 participation fee for each dependent. Visa holders may conduct business, purchase real estate, study, or invest money in approved sectors.
Those interested in what is known as the Global Investor Program (GIP), one of the best golden visa schemes in Asia which was launched in 2004, must have a minimum investment of SGD 2.5 million in a new business entity or to expand an existing business operation. Alternatively, an investment of SGD2.5 million in one of the GIP-approved funds qualifies for the visa scheme.
Should the application be successful, the successful applicant will have a permanent residence permit valid for 5 years. After two years of a permanent residence in Singapore, applicants may then apply for citizenship; however, it is important to note that Singapore is a strictly single-citizenship country so each applicant must forgo any other existing citizenships before naturalization is possible.