Changes to Citizenship by Investment in Bulgaria

Changes to Citizenship by Investment in Bulgaria

The Bulgarian government had been planning for changes to their citizenship law and they published a draft Bill of the proposed changes on 22 March 2019. The draft Bill will focus solely at citizenship rather than permanent residency. However, the draft may have significant changes to it before being finalised, or it could potentially be rejected as a whole, leaving the law as it is.

If the proposal passes, they will continue both the standard track and the fast track application. The changes will direct more towards the investments that will be permitted. The investment selection that is proposed will most likely make the Citizenship by Investment program have more similarities to the EB-5 programme.

In the Fast Track option, the applicants that want to get a citizenship will now have to invest a second time in a ‘priority certified investment project’. The investment will have to be made ‘in the capital’ of the company that does the project, as long as the project is approved under the Encouragement of Investment Act (EIA). The first investment that the applicants make will still be available to be made in bonds or shares of a listed company.

If applicants already submitted their application for citizenship before the changes come into effect, they will carry on under the old law. If they apply for citizenship after it has been amended, it will be processed according to when and how the applicant first started their application.