Months into the global pandemic, people are beginning to realize the real aftermath of COVID-19.
Yes, it is a threat to public health – that’s a painful fact that billions worldwide have already learned to accept. But the global pandemic is not only a health crisis, but it is also an economic one.
No matter where you live in the world, you’re bound to realize that besides your health, your livelihood is affected, as well, whether directly or indirectly. Tourism has slowed, and businesses that require person-to-person contact remain closed.
Although people will only be truly safe from the threat of this virus once a vaccine is developed, there is still hope to continue living at a certain level of comfort within the “new normal” that is the aftermath of the COVID-19.
Amidst all this, travel will probably be the last thing on your mind. However, citizenship by investment news reveals that being an economic citizen of the Caribbean can help you get back on your feet after the pandemic.
How? Here are four ways a Caribbean passport can help you bounce back from the COVID-19 pandemic:
Travel bans around the world will continue to prevent further spread of the virus. But with fear spreading more quickly than the virus, more and more people are choosing to remain home and avoid any unnecessary travel for the time being.
While this is a wise course to take in this current situation, it will not always be the case. Whether you’re a businessman or someone who frequently travels for work and leisure before many countries shut their doors, having a Caribbean passport promises the same level of ease in travel as they have before COVID-19.
Remember that, like other calamities, the pandemic is only temporary. You mustn’t shut yourself out of the possibility of traveling as it will always be necessary.
That said, Caribbean passports – particularly those from the countries of Grenada, Dominica, St. Lucia, St. Kitts and Nevis, and Antigua and Barbuda – are among the world’s most powerful travel documents. All these passports will give you easy access to many countries, which could potentially include the nation of your choice.
For example, Antigua and Barbuda citizenship by investment benefits include visa-free access to as many as 165 countries. As of 2019, this already includes Bolivia, India, Kosovo, Russia, and the European Union member countries.
Refuge for You and Your Family
Of course, the travel benefit Caribbean passports offer isn’t just good after the crisis is over – you can also use this to keep your family safe.
You see, having two passports can increase your chances of entering a country of your choice, hassle-free. This will greatly expand your options and help you find a refuge in a place where you and your family will feel safer and more comfortable.
This is particularly useful if your country is affected by the pandemic. If you want to leave, you can. The best part is that you can use your Caribbean passport to avoid any delays and hassles, even those that may prevent you from going to the country of your choice.
More Affordable Investment Options
When things get bleak, it pays to be able to see the silver lining even in a crisis such as the COVID-19 pandemic. For aspiring Caribbean economic citizens, this comes in the form of a more affordable second citizenship in the Caribbean.
In July 2020, Bloomberg reported that Caribbean nations are slashing the prices of their citizenship by investment programs.
With tourism at a standstill in these island nations, they are beginning to look for ways to revive their economies. The solution? More affordable second passports.
St. Kitts and Nevis
The mountainous twin-island country of St. Kitts and Nevis, which is home to some 53,000 people, is among the first countries to reduce the minimum for their citizenship by investment program.
From $195,000, the country is now allowing $150,000 contribution to the Sustainable Growth Fund for a family of four. That’s a 23 percent discount valid until the end of 2020.
Speaking to Bloomberg, St. Kitts and Nevis Citizenship Investment Unit CEO Les Khan explained that the move is meant to generate revenue to sustain the country’s economy. Other CBI countries have also put changes in motion to attract more clients to apply.
In a similar move, St. Lucia is now offering a five-year non-interest bearing bonds for interested would-be citizens to reduce the required investment by 50 percent. This means individual investors and families with four members would only need to invest $250,000 and $300,000, respectively. Again, this COVID-19 relief is valid until the end of 2020.
Antigua and Barbuda
Besides St. Kitts and Nevis, another twin-island Caribbean country is offering lower investment options for aspiring economic citizens.
Families with four members can now apply for Antigua and Barbuda citizenship by investment for as low as $100,000 donation to the country’s National Development Fund. They also decreased the additional investment required for additional dependent children.
Unhindered Food Supply and Business Opportunities
Apart from the many benefits of remote work and e-commerce, the COVID-19 pandemic also taught people around the world of the value of unhindered local food supply. With importations coming to a halt as countries self-isolate, having locally produced goods makes for a more sustainable living.
Once the world opens up, a strengthened export industry should be able to aid in the international demand and serve as an added revenue source for Caribbean nations. Regional harvests like the South Pacific mahi-mahi and Caribbean breadfruit could make it big on international shelves.
Of course, if you become a Caribbean citizen, you won’t have to wait for export policies to change to enjoy these delicacies. You can get it straight from the source.
Apart from gaining access to a continuous supply of food for your family, living in the Caribbean during the pandemic has also opened up opportunities for business. While tourism is down, countries in the region are bound to shift their focus on maximizing the preservation of their natural resources, including seafood and produce exports.
With the right perspective, you can turn a catastrophe into an opportunity.
Invest in Caribbean real estate and consider taking part in the fishery, agriculture, small-scale manufacturing, and healthcare sectors. Who knows? These pillars for survival in a post-pandemic world could also be the key to your business success.
Bounce Back at the Caribbean
Bouncing back from the aftermath of a global crisis is possible. With a bit of research and the right perspective, you can turn the tides and transform a crisis into a chance to live a better life.
Kal Kennard is a Partner at Citizens International, a white-glove specialist firm offering private client services necessary for citizenship, residency and investment into the Caribbean, North America, and Europe. Based in the Caribbean for the past 15 years, she is an experienced consultant who works directly with many professional partners and advises clients worldwide.