Although a small island, Malta has a vibrant history with a significant number of historic sites. The island of Malta lies in the heart of the Mediterranean Sea, between Europe and Africa. The country is a constitutional republic and parliamentary democracy in the EU, in which the Prime Minister is the head of the government.
Malta is, also, a member of the major international organisations including the United Nations and the Council of Europe, the International Monetary Fund and is a member of the European Union as well as the Eurozone and the Schengen Area.
If you gain a Maltese passport through the Malta citizenship-by-investment program, you can travel to 156 countries on visa-free or visa-on-arrival terms, making it the joint 7th strongest passport in the world in 2018.
Time and benefits
The Malta citizenship-by-investment program takes around one year before you have your second passport. Saying that the program gives you Schengen Residence status for a year before your passport arrives, and you’re eligible for your application date. So, although you don’t have the complete package for a year, you do have the freedom to travel across the Schengen zone or the European Union within a very short timeframe.
Malta also taxes based on domicile and residence rather than citizenship, so like Cyprus, you’re not considered tax resident in Malta unless you reside on the islands for more than 183 days per year. Maltese residents aren’t subject to tax on foreign source income unless remitted to Malta and aren’t subject to any foreign-source capital gains whether paid or not.
In general, companies in Malta are usually taxed at a flat rate of 35%. However, you may also qualify separately for tax incentives under the Maltese Global Residency Program, which gives you taxation at a flat rate of 15% on remitted income. Also, Malta has double tax treaties with more than 60 countries. As such, you can avoid paying tax twice. However, there is a minimum tax liability per family of EUR 15,000 per year.
Malta’s official languages are Maltese and English, and Italian is widely spoken. Maltese has very similar roots to Arabic, thanks to the island’s 9th to 13th-century Arab inhabitants.
For the Malta citizenship-by-investment program, your investment is divided into three parts, plus fees. To obtain Maltese citizenship you should contribute EUR 650,000 into Malta, plus EUR 25,000 per child or spouse and EUR 50,000 per a dependent. Then you must invest in property – either EUR 350,000 to buy or a rental contract for EUR 16,000 per year for five years. Finally, you invest EUR 150,000 into government-approved bonds for five years. So, the total amount that you have to invest to gain citizenship is EUR 1.2M.
The Malta citizenship-by-investment program explicitly states that you must be in good health. The program, too, has an unusual ‘genuine link’ clause, whereby you must show you have a genuine personal connection with Malta. This is a one-year ‘residence requirement’, or other proposed social, philanthropic, commercial or personal link that one of our consultants can help you define.
There are few differences between the Cyprus and Malta citizenship-by-investment programs. However, both countries offer a good deal. In fact, the returns on your investment make both nations an exceptional choice if you want to travel more freely, break into the EU or embrace a new lifestyle in the European Union.