“When you have money, you can put whatever you want in any place in the world”, says Jorge. The words of this venezuelan of 28 years sound like mere statement of fact. He, who prefers not to give his last name and agrees to pose in the photo if it is not recognised, it takes three months in Spain and already has a residence permit and work. It is one of the 5.778 foreigners who, from January 1 to October 31 of this year, they have obtained a visa under the Law of support to entrepreneurs and their internationalization. Speaking in silver, a 'golden visa'. The been achieved after a real estate investment of 500,000 euros.MORE INFORMATION Spain, a plan b for the venezuelan people with resources
This course is the most widely used, the margin of family reunion, among which includes the standard to obtain residency in exchange for an investment. This year, also until October, have used it 546 people, according to the Ministry of Foreign affairs. The figures suggest that Spain will end 2018 with a new record of visa gold. In the absence of the last two months of the year, the data almost equal to those of the whole 2017 (5.876 permissions, 563 for purchasing real estate). Since we launched the program in 2013, to attract investors during the crisis, the permissions have not ceased to grow each year.
Spain is not the only country in the world that offers this type of facilities to wealthy people. To obtain residency, and even citizenship in some cases, it is possible if given half a succulent investment in 13 States of the European Union. The NGO Transparency International is one of the that have criticized these practices. In a report published last month —with the declarative title Getaway european. Inside the murky world of the visa-gold— pointed to Spain as the partner of the EU with more golden visa. 24.095 according to official data. Thus, it is also one of the countries that more money has entered.
“The residence and nationality of europe have been turned into luxury products”, writes Daniel Amoedo, of Transparency International Spain. “Out of the issue fundamental ethic of selling passports”, he continues, “there is also a side loss of those programs.” Refers to persons related to cases of corruption in Brazil, Russia or Ukraine that have been accessed by this pathway to the ease of movement that gives the Schengen area. Appointment to Cyprus, Malta and Portugal as the countries “more lax”.what Risk of money laundering?
“In Portugal there has been quite a scandal, but in Spain the State has delegated to private hands the power to police,” says attorney Christopher Carter. His firm, DC Society of Lawyers, has issued in five years, some 100 permits. The law on anti-money-laundering becomes liable to all those involved in the process, so any suspicion should be reported. The investor must justify the provenance of each of the euro and the banks have been “very severe.” “While you're pending the permission will not leave you, or make income in cash,” says Carter.
Pure Strong, the firm specialized in foreign customers Strong Lawyers, concurs in the diagnosis. “It is virtually impossible to launder money,” says the lawyer, who is Spanish but took the surname of her husband american. The battle against money laundering is Vdcasino one of their devotions professionals and will occur way more simple that the golden visa. It also cites other legal requirement: a certificate of criminal impeccable. “There are americans who are without it by having driven drunk,” he says.
But for the representative of Transparency International, the current rules “is not sufficient because it dilutes the responsibility of carrying out the process of due diligence between banks and brokers.” The NGO believes that the State should conduct more stringent checks. As proof of that now not do, points to the short-period (less than a month) that it takes to be granted a golden visa, from justifying the investment.
The two lawyers pointed out that in recent years has changed the profile of the applicants. “Come many, many families,” sums up Carter. That is also the profile which has been found Eduardo Salamanca, consultant, real estate Engel & Völkers that this year he has advised three operations for clients of visa gold. “As people of a certain economic level, they look for areas relatively expensive, and that are enjoyable to reside”, he says.
In Madrid, where she works as the consultant of the real estate agency specialized in luxury apartments, the Salamanca district is the favorite. Among its clients hears a lot of praise to the Spanish life style and more of a complaint because “it seems easy, but in the end there is a lot of regulatory requirement”.
The american Coleen Sun, 45 years old, it meets the two requirements that appointment, your real estate advisor. This nurse training, which in recent years has been dedicated to the work of investment “in areas of business and real estate”, he decided to leave China after a divorce and chose Spain “for its culture and its beauty”.
Sun bought a house in Madrid in September, but has not yet formally asked the golden visa. A privilege of this procedure is that it can be done from Spain, unlike what happens with other permissions. But that does not save “many processes of legalization and translation of documents needed for the application. In your case, both English and chinese.
George tells a simpler process. “It has been very comfortable,” he says looking at Carter, his attorney. The language was for him a factor, but there were others: in the Spanish capital lived as his sister and states, “fan number one” of Real Madrid. You prefer not to itemize what you paid for your floor or for the investments that continues to make a franchise of aesthetic centres. The legal advice has cost about 3,000 euros. And although as drawbacks just cited the lack of sea and the cold begins to tighten in Madrid, sends a message before leaving: “do Not think that is not difficult, with pulp or without it, to emigrate is superdifícil”.Chinese in Madrid and Barcelona, russians on the Costa del Sol
The latest official statistics on golden visa granted do not itemize where they are installed applicants for this type of permissions, but the people familiar with the process agree that Barcelona and Madrid are the favourite places. There are also certain communities with a preference for specific areas. “The russians choose to Marbella and the Costa del Sol,” explains the lawyer Pure Strong, who highlights the growth of the coast in the last few months.
What detail the data of the Secretariat of State of Trade (which do not incorporate 2018) are the nationalities of those who have obtained a visa gold in Spain. With the exception of 2013, when it only took 36 permits because the law came andn force almost in October, the chinese have taken the lead in all years. In total add up to 4.640 golden visa.
The russians are the second nationality most frequent (1.997 permissions), but their applications are becoming less and less and, if it is observed only 2017, occupied the fifth place. USA, in third place with 1.609 visas, we are moving closer to Russia, as it happens with the brazilians (1.178 visas). The resident indians are the fifth, but in 2017 grew a lot: 653 of 916 full permissions were granted last year. In sixth and seventh place come the first two Spanish speaking countries: Venezuela and Mexico.