Over the last few years, high-net-worth individuals have turned their attention abroad in search of new markets, better opportunities, and the freedom to travel freely around the world. Recent political and economic events in leading global markets have instilled a sense of urgency in investors, prompting them to seek stable, long-term investments that provide generational security and new opportunities.
Dual citizenship is not a new offering, but it has grown in importance as a means of strategically accessing lucrative markets in North America, particularly Canada and the United States. While both countries provide numerous benefits to investors and their families, there are significant differences between the investor visas available in North America.
We’ll look at the various types of Canadian investor visas and how they compare to US options.
Analyzing the various types of Canadian investor visas
Canada has several investor visas and provincial nominee programs, but many are province-specific and have their own set of requirements.
The Start-Up Visa Program in Canada is considered a general business immigration program and is the most location-flexible. Businesses established under the Start-Up Visa may be established anywhere in the country, but certain requirements must be met.
- A language requirement exists. While many investors considering North American citizenship are likely to be fluent in English, it is important to note that Canada requires you to meet a fluency benchmark immediately upon application for your Start-Up Visa.
- You will also require the assistance of third parties to fund your business venture. This is a difficult requirement for investors who are self-sufficient and want to start their own business. Not everyone wants the help of outside investors with their own ideas and plans for the company.
Canada also provides “investor visas,” which differ by province. Provincial Nominee Programs are another name for these visas (PNPs). Each province has its own set of requirements, so you must tailor your business goals to meet the needs of that province. Also, read about work permit visa in Canada.
If your business and citizenship goals are closely aligned with those of British Columbia, you may be disappointed to learn that you do not meet the requirements and must instead choose an investor program in Ontario. This is just one example, but it demonstrates how you must tailor your needs to those of each province. This can be extremely constricting for investors.
One of the most restrictive aspects of a Canadian investor visa is that the business you open must be unique and beneficial to the Canadian economy. The Canadian government prefers companies that develop software and new technologies. If your company does not fall into one of these high-demand industries, your application may be rejected solely on that basis. This is a significant disadvantage when compared to the E-2 visa, which allows you to establish any type of business as long as it is approved by the US government.
Section 205 work visas and inter-corporate transferee work visas are also available throughout Canada, but you must be a sponsored employee of an existing company or have significant start-up capital. These two options may not meet your investment objectives if you are an independently wealthy investor.
Now that you know more about the various visas available in Canada, it’s time to think about important factors like family satisfaction and whether you’ll be happy in your new home country. Obtaining second citizenship is far more than a financial decision; it has long-term consequences for your spouse and family. There are numerous factors to consider when deciding to relocate or invest.
Canada has a more difficult financial and physical climate
The decision to invest abroad and pursue citizenship through investment programs is more than a social or personal choice—it is a significant financial investment with tax implications. One of the most common reasons foreign investors seek citizenship by investment is to avoid global taxation and to operate in a more hospitable economic environment.
Investors looking for tax-friendly environments are unlikely to find them in Canada. The effective tax rate in Canada is significantly higher than the income tax rate in the United States. The effective tax rate in Canada is around 28 percent, while the income tax in the United States is around 18 percent.
The allure of “free” healthcare in Canada is a big draw for many immigrant families. Unfortunately, the assumption that you will receive healthcare immediately upon arrival is incorrect. In Canada, there is a three-month waiting period before applying for public health insurance. This has significant consequences, as waiting times to see a doctor or specialist can last months. This, combined with the approval waiting period for healthcare, makes receiving immediate assistance difficult.
The United States allows for both national and global mobility
One of the most significant advantages of dual citizenship is the increased global mobility provided by having a second passport. Citizenship in a highly desirable country like Grenada allows you to travel freely to 140 other countries. That are including the United Kingdom, China, and other key destinations. This freedom to travel without a visa is a significant benefit for investors. Their families seek unrestricted access to global markets and improved social opportunities.
You should carefully examine what each citizenship provides. Also includes access to other countries through visa programs, as you evaluate your second citizenship options. In the case of Canadian investor visas, the investor and his family are largely restricted by province. This means you must live in the province for which your visa was approved. If you decide you don’t like your new city or province, you can’t just move somewhere else in Canada.
How to Enter the United States Using Your Grenada Citizenship
Accessing the United States through Grenada citizenship is a relatively simple process:
- Step one is to obtain Grenada citizenship. You must participate in a citizenship by investment program to obtain citizenship. You can participate in these programs by investing in a government-approved real estate project. In exchange, the government of Grenada will grant you citizenship.
- Step 2: Once you have obtained your Grenada citizenship, you may be able to apply for a US E-2 visa.
- Step 3: To be approved for an E-2 visa, you must invest in a US-approved business venture. This investment usually costs at least $150,000 USD.
- Step 4: If your E-2 visa application is approved, you, your spouse. And any dependent children will be permitted to reside, work, and live in the United States.
Each of these steps has many nuances, and a reputable citizenship consultant can assist you in navigating the process. To learn more about the Canada investment visa process visit our website.