The latest official figures from the Latvian government bear out 2016 being quite a successful year for its golden visa programs, particularly for the real estate investment scheme. Data from the Latvian migration office shows just around 7% (489 permits) of total residence permits issued to foreign nationals done so on the basis of real estate investment.
Of the 609 total residence permits issued for Latvia’s investment schemes, another 1% were issued for corporate investment, as well as a further 1% for investment in a credit or banking institution.
The real estate investment scheme seems to be the clear winner among Latvian golden visa holders, requiring the applicant to make a minimum €250,000 property purchase to qualify. There is a further 5% state fee for real estate investment, but this does not seem to be deterring applicants.
Comparatively, foreign nationals interested in Latvia’s other golden visa pathways will need to make a minimum corporate investment of €100,000 or deposit at least €280,000 in a credit or banking institution. Each of these investment routes will allow applicants to obtain a 5-year temporary residence permit, which can later be converted to permanent residence if the holder has continuously lived in Latvia for 4 years and 2 months.
According to the same government statistics, nearly 10,000 foreigners were living in the country on a Latvian residence permit issued for participation in the real estate investment scheme in 2017. Russia had the largest amount of permit holders with 7,445, China with 952, and Ukraine with 715. The Central Asian nations of Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, and Azerbaijan also occupied a chunk of the list with a combined total of 780 participants.
All of Latvia’s golden visa programs remain active in 2018 and each of the applications have fairly short 2-3 month waits. Anyone interested in applying for these investment schemes can find more information here.