What is the Immigrant Investor Programme(IIP) ?
The Immigrant Investor Programme (IIP) is open to non-EEA nationals who commit to an approved investment in Ireland. The Immigrant Investor Programme requires a minimum investment of €1m, from the applicants own resources and not financed through a loan or other such facility, which must be committed for a minimum of three years.
Each application will be examined on its merits in a qualitative examination by an independent interdepartmental committee. The investment has to be good for Ireland, good for jobs and in the public interest, the funds invested have to be legally acquired and owned by the investor.
To find out more about IIP, how it works, what the benefits are and how you can apply, contact one of our expert advisors!
Available Investment Options
Only investments officially approved by the Irish Immigrant Investor Programme will qualify an individual and their family for residence in Ireland. Permissible investments under the Ireland Investor Program are divided into four tracks:
Under this option, Ireland Investor Visa candidates must invest at least €1 million into a qualifying Irish enterprise for at least three years. The enterprise can be an existing business, or it can be a new business started by the investor. The enterprise must be registered in Ireland, and its headquarters must be located in the country. The enterprise must also help the Irish economy by creating or maintaining local jobs.
Prospective immigrants must make the business investment in their own name (not in the name of a corporation or trust), and are not permitted to qualify under this option through the purchase of publicly traded shares or real estate that they intend to rent to tenants. Potential candidates may propose a large investment involving a number of partners, all of whom are applying to the Ireland Immigrant Investor Programme, as long as each individual investment qualifies independently under the program. It is also possible to invest in multiple qualifying businesses in Ireland as long as the total investment made in the country is at least one million euros.
Approved Investment Fund
Under this option of the Ireland immigration by investment program, candidates must invest at least €1 million into a qualifying investment fund for at least three years. The investment fund must have been pre-approved for the program by Immigration Ireland, and it must be a private equity or venture capital fund focusing on small and medium-sized enterprises. The fund must also have a minimum target size of €20 million.
Any domestic investment by the fund must be used to purchase equity stakes in Ireland-registered companies whose shares are not publicly traded. The funds, as well as the fund managers, must be subject to regulation by the Irish Central Bank in order to conduct any business in the jurisdiction. Only funds managed by an experienced fund manager located in Ireland are eligible for approval under this option of the Irish Investor Program.
There is a list of pre-approved funds available for Ireland investor immigration. The primary criteria for pre-approving an investment fund is its potential to create jobs in Ireland, not its potential to generate profit for the investor. The Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) does not possess the expertise or authority to recommend any particular investment fund, whether or not it has been pre-approved for immigration purposes. Consequently, INIS does not in any way guarantee the performance of any such fund. An Irish immigration lawyer can help foreign nationals interested in Ireland investor citizenship identify available funds under this investment option.
Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT)
Under this Investor Visa Ireland option, candidates must invest in an Irish REIT. A REIT is a listed company used to hold rental property in a manner that mitigates investor risk yet avoids double taxation. A REIT will typically invest in a diverse pool of properties so as to minimize risk, and must distribute most of its profits every year.
To qualify for Irish residency under this option, applicants must invest at least €2 million into one or more qualifying REITs for at least three years. The REIT must either be listed on the Irish Stock Exchange or have already applied for listing and given notice of the same to the Revenue Commissioners. Investors must maintain the original number of shares they purchased for the full three years, even if their value rises above the €2 million investment requirement. After three years, the immigrant investor may divest a maximum of 50 percent of his or her shares. One year later, they are allowed to divest an additional 25 percent, and after a total of five years from the original date of purchase, he or she may fully divest. Please note: candidates do not have to identify exactly which REIT they intend to invest in at the time of application because this might disturb market order. Any REIT a foreign national invests in before receiving official approval from Immigration Ireland will not count for the purposes of the Irish Immigrant Investor Programme.
Endowment (Donation Option)
Under this Ireland Investor Program option, candidates must donate at least €500,000 to a qualifying philanthropic project in arts, sports, health, culture or education. Candidates that act in concert with four or more other immigrant investors may invest as little as €400,000 each as long as the total donation goes to a single project. Immigrant investors must not receive any financial return on their contribution. Since this option does not require an investment, there is no minimum holding period.