Where to Invest: Citizenship by Investment for South Africans in Europe

Updated: 14 February 2024

Consultant and advisory companies in their numbers indicate that the interest shown in European citizenship by investment programs grows consistently. The advantages of a second passport from Europe attract especially South African investors. According to the professionals in the field, the first half of 2018 recorded a 229% year on year increase in applications from South Africans. The election of Cyril Ramaphosa to replace Jacob Zuma as ANC president might have a triggering effect on this occurrence, because after the elections the number of South Africans looking to buy their way into Europe increased drastically.

Where do South Africans choose to apply for their second citizenships?

Among the globally most preferred second passport destinations are Australia, United States, Portugal, Malta and Cyprus. South Africans seeking another citizenship, however, mostly prefer European destinations such as Moldova, Malta, Portugal and Cyprus. High quality European citizenship by investment programs lure South Africans from traditionally popular emigration options like United States, United Kingdom or Australia.

The South African Investor Profile

According to advisory and consultancy companies, there are two types of South African clients who want to have a second citizenship at hand. The first type aims for the second passport because of business-related problems such as travel limitation due to visa restrictions. European passports allow businesspeople to travel to most important business hubs around the world much more easily. Thus, the greater mobility and greater business opportunities are among the most important reasons to pick European citizenship by investment programs for South Africans.

The other type constitutes the vast majority of the total number of applicants. This type of applicants essentially looks for another option just in case. The economy does not seem reassuring, political situation does not look stable, and the education system is unpredictable in the country. Therefore, worrying that what the country might be like in a few years, vast majority of South Africans looking for a second passport choose European citizenship by investment programs in order to provide their families with better living standards and options in the future. Or, they might chose to apply for residency by investment programs like Portugese Golden Visa investment options.

Recommended for you

Subscribe to our newsletter