If you wish to invest in a government certified reforestation projects, you may obtain a temporary residency visa.
Investment must be made in reforestation activities or forestry plantation or other activity determined by the National Environmental Authority. The minimum investment amount is US$80,000 and must be made in a minimum of 5 hectares of forest land.
For each dependent included, the investment will need to be increased by US$2,000.
The visa has a validity of 2 years. After this period, you may apply for a permanent residence permit, if you prove the disbursements from the reforestation project or prove that the reforestation company is providing maintenance and that their contract remains in force.
After 5 years of permanent residency, you may be eligible for citizenship. You may be required to show some ties to the country, such as a permanent home, have spent a significant time in Panama during your residency visa, have Spanish language skills, knowledge of Panamanian history, culture and values, and attend an interview.
About the Panama Reforestation Visa
This Panamanian program grants permanent residency to foreigners who invest a minimum of USD $100,000 in a reforestation project approved and managed by a forestry company regulated by the Ministry of Environment of the Republic of Panama.
This investment must be maintained for at least 5 years after obtaining permanent residency.
The USD$100,000 investment is utilized as follows:
- $90,000 for the land. The area depends on the project of your choice from our list of partners.
- $10,000 for maintenance, and management for a period of up to 8 years (see application process)
Following Executive Order # 320 from August 8, 2008, if the investor plans to include his dependents (e.g. family) in the application, he must increase the investment by $2,000 for each dependent.
You can also use a Corporation or a Company as an investment vehicle. In that case, the residency application can include any number of applicants as long as each applicant invests USD $100,000 in a reforestation project.
Application Process & Minimum Investment Period
This immigration program first grants a 2-year provisional residency permit, prior to applying for and obtaining the permanent residency permit. In general, it takes 3 years to obtain permanent residency based on these steps:
- The process begins by submitting the initial application at the immigration office (refer to the application requirements below).
- When the initial application is accepted at the immigration office, the applicant receives a temporary residency permit.
- The immigration office usually takes 6 months (sometimes less) to resolve this initial application.
- Once the initial application is approved, the immigration office issues a provisional residency permit.
- The provisional residency permit is valid for 2 years. Afterward, the holder may apply for permanent residency.
- The immigration office usually takes 6 months (sometimes less) to resolve the application for permanent residency.
- Once the application is approved, the provisional residency permit is replaced with a permanent residency permit.
- Following existing laws, the permanent resident must hold the investment on the reforestation project for at least 5 years once permanent residency is approved.
- During these 5 years, after permanent residency is granted, the permanent resident must submit yearly documentation to the immigration office proving he still holds the reforestation project under his name.
For this reason, the applicant needs to budget and consider maintenance and administration expenses for the reforestation project for at least 8 years.
Requirements for the initial application to obtain Provisional Residency
The following documentation is required for the initial application to obtain Provisional Residency:
- Criminal Background Check
- Applicant’s certificate of clearance from fees and taxes owed to the government (Paz y Salvo)
- Proof of direct investment in reforestation activities for at least USD $100,000
- If using a Corporation or a Company as an investment vehicle:
- A sworn declaration from the Treasurer or Secretary, stating the activity of the entity, share a percentage of the applicant, and the capital invested for these shares.
- CPA certificate detailing the total investment directly related to reforestation projects and the percentage of such investment attributed to the capital invested by the applicant.
- Authenticated copy of the applicant’s shares certificate.
- Copy of the latest income tax return, detailing the capital invested in reforestation projects. If such does not exist because the entity has not completed its first fiscal year, then a copy of RUC inscription and copy of annual tax (Tasa Unica) payment.
- Company’s original public registry inscription certificate.
The Panama Reforestation Residency Provides:
- Permanent residency for you and your family
- 100% ownership of a Government approved green reforestation lot managed in harmony with nature
- A friendly, straightforward immigration process
- Opportunity to obtain citizenship after 5 years of permanent residency
- Access to one of the world's most favorable tax systems
- Access to a stable country with a strong economy, high standard of living and untapped investment opportunities
A unique opportunity, as they qualify for permanent residency in Panama, through the attractive reforestation program that offers a high value backed by a strong asset, (land growing quality timber on it). This program qualifies you and your family for permanent residency in Panama, in a relatively short time frame, and straightforward process. It even allows you the opportunity to obtain citizenship.
The Panama Reforestation Residency is a very attractive and unique option for some people who previously had limited possibilities for a second residency in thriving countries. It is becoming increasingly popular, especially among Chinese nationals, but is still a largely untapped opportunity. making it very valuable at this moment, and still easily accessible at this time. Increasing demand over time could lead to the processes becoming more expensive and difficult. Due to its requirement of a land investment of a specific kind, projects are limited and take time to develop. We currently have a limited number of projects that are approved and ready.
Please review our project section to see current availabilities and to take advantage of this great opportunity to get a second, easily maintained residency in Panama and 100% ownership of land with managed timber growing on it, in a country with one of the world's most favorable tax systems and high standards of living. It is the perfect way to secure your future!
Panama enacted Law 24 to encourage private investment in efforts to restore the country's rapidly diminishing tropical forests. To reverse this trend, Law 24 offers significant tax advantages and residency visa eligibility to investors in government-approved reforestation projects. Individuals who present proof that they have invested at least $100,000 in an approved reforestation project of including the purchase of the land itself, can apply for a Panamanian Reforestation Visa.
This visa is particularly advantageous for those who want residency in Panama but who do not qualify for a retiree visa or friendly nations visa, and want to avoid the lengthy and expensive process of obtaining a standard investor's visa. The latter can be very challenging for citizens of some nations, and is much more expensive (USD 300k Plus). The Reforestation Residency Visa offers you high value, secure ownership of a land asset, and a straightforward process.
After five years of holding permanent residency status, an individual may apply to become a naturalized citizen of Panama and receive a Panamanian passport. It is not necessary to live in Panama while your visa application is being processed, although periodic visits to Panama City immigration office are required.
Panama places no age limits on the Reforestation Visa, other than requiring that the applicant be at least 18 years old. Dependents can also be covered in the program, including the applicant's spouse and any children under 18. Children between the ages of 18 and 25 who are unmarried students with no children of their own may also qualify as dependents of the applicant. For these dependents there are no extra requirements of additional investment. The only thing needed is to present the same personal documents and pay the incremental additional legal costs per dependent.
Our Multilingual expert Panamanian immigration attorney will safely guide you through it all.
To maintain your permanent residency in Panama the only requirement is that you must visit Panama for a minimum of 1 day within 18 months after obtaining permanent residency.
Panama's environmental protection agency (Ministerio de Ambiente) oversees reforestation projects. Below is a summary of the key benefits of the reforestation program to investors.
- All wood that is harvested within the project is exonerated from Panamanian taxes for 25 years, including income and export taxes. All capital gains from the project are tax-exempt, and all direct and indirect investments in the project are 100% deductible from the investor's Panamanian income tax. In addition, no real estate taxes are levied against the land while in the reforestation project.
- Any equipment and materials purchased for use in the reforestation project can be brought into Panama tax-free. This includes vehicles and heavy equipment, which would normally be subject to import taxes.
- Individuals who present proof that they have invested in an approved reforestation project, including the purchase of the land itself, can apply for a Panamanian Reforestation residency visa.
- After 5 years after holding a permanent residency status, an individual may apply to become a naturalized citizen of Panama and receive a Panamanian passport. It is not necessary to live in Panama while your visa application is being processed, although periodic visits to the Panama City immigration office are required.
- Panama places no age limits on the Reforestation Visa. Dependents can be covered under the program, including the applicant's spouse and any children under 18. Children between the ages of 18 and 25 who are unmarried students with no children of their own may also qualify as dependents of the applicant. The main applicant must be at least 18 years old.
Panama Reforestation program meets all the qualifications of the visa. The total cost of your project includes all legal costs and government fees, visa for yourself, as well as the fully managed forestry plot, 100% titled in your name, starts at only $140,000.