Malta, Dominica, St Kitts Nevis Citizenship by Investment Due Diligence recognised by Financial Time

Malta, Dominica & St. Kitts Due Diligence Process Ranks Amongst the Strongest

Dr. Antoine Saliba Haig co-authored with Dr Priscilla Mifsud Parker | Published on 07 Feb 2022

Malta Dominica  St Kitts Due Diligence Process Ranks

The Financial Times praised the thorough due diligence practices undertaken by Malta, Dominica, and St Kitts & Nevis authorities when processing citizenship by investment applications. Thanks to the due diligence processes adopted by these countries, it is ensured that only eligible and reputable applicants get citizenship through investment. The governmental authorities of Dominica, Malta and St Kitts and Nevis have built their citizenship programme focusing on the provision of a high standard due-diligence process. Due Diligence is one of the most important factors for individuals seeking to obtain citizenship through investment and it is responsible for the success or failure of any citizenship by investment programme. This process ensures that the application process remains transparent and effective at evaluating citizenship applicants. 

In the CBI Index issued by the PWM Magazine of the Financial Times, Malta, Dominica, and St Kitts & Nevis a have been considered to have the best CBI Programme Due Diligence Process.

Dominica and St Kitts & Nevis Citizenship by Investment

Dominica and St Kitts and Nevis are two countries in the Caribbean region offering a citizenship by investment programme. St Kitts was the first country in the world to introduce an investment route to citizenship when it launched the citizenship by investment regulations in 1984. Dominica then followed to introduce a citizenship by investment programme in 1993 and its programme has been ranked as the best CBI initiative for five consecutive years in the Financial Times CBI index. Both countries mainly use the income generated from the programme to improve their infrastructure, healthcare and to mitigate the devastating impact of the natural calamities in the region. 

Malta Citizenship by Investment

Malta launched its revised citizenship by investment programme in 2021 through the Granting of Citizenship for exceptional services regulations. It has been one of the first countries to fully recognise the importance of due diligence in the citizenship by investment industry. In fact, the Maltese Due Diligence process has developed over the past years, where it potentially went beyond scrutinizing the source of wealth of the prospective applicant. To date, this rigorous process has been adequately broken-down allowing stakeholders to focus on implementing a high standard multi-layered process to discover information from a wholistic based approach. In addition, transparency and thorough vetting processing of the application has been established by employing two foreign diligence firms. The Maltese citizenship regulations are enforced with a four-tier due diligence process which is considered as being the most stringent in countries offering a CBI programme. Once this four-tier due diligence process is completed, the assessors review all the information collected and a report is complied using a risk matrix developed by the Maltese citizenship agency. 

By ensuring continuous developments of comprehensive and detailed due diligence checks with major concerns towards national and international security these three countries have a high rejection rate since they reject applicants which do not show clear evidence of their source of funds and wealth. This guarantees that only reputable applicants are granted citizenship, thereby responsibly leading the way for a well-structured framework of safety and security within society. 

The Due Diligence Process

The due diligence process goes beyond the submission of a clean police record but through national authorities and autonomous professional companies that specialize in investigating individuals and firms, it is ensured that the personal and professional profile of the applicant is scrutinized. In fact, such research and assessment are administered by rules and conditions to be fulfilled for all applicants especially within the terms of anti-terrorism and anti-money laundering laws. Certain laws automatically preclude applicants from certain countries from applying. Nationals of Iran, N Korea and Sudan are excluded from applying in Dominica unless they have no substantial assets in those countries, and have lived outside for the last ten years. St Kitts & Nevis excludes without exceptions nationals of Afghanistan, Cuba, Iran and N Korea from applying for its citizenship programme. On the other hand, Malta excludes citizens of Afghanistan, Congo, Iran, N Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela, Yemen, Sudan and South Sudan. 

Having a strong system of due diligence is essential to the national security of both the country of origin of the applicant and the country granting its citizenship. This is essential in order to create a strong relationship with all international partners ensuring a quality investment highly regarded worldwide. 


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