The Alternative Routes of Portugal Golden Visa Increase in Popularity

Updated: 2 September 2021

Portugal’s Golden Visa program was launched in 2012. Since then, it received around EUR 5.5 billion of investment. Approximately 90% of this amount came in the form of real estate investment. Most of this percentage was generated through the program’s main real estate investment option: EUR 500,000 route. However, the trend of the program shows that alternative routes slowly increase their popularity.

Recent Performance of the Portugal Golden Visa

In July 2020, the Portugal Golden Visa generated EUR 56 million. In the same month of 2019, this amount was around EUR 98 million. Yet, considering the travel restrictions and the global pandemic at hand, it is not a bad performance. So far in 2020, the program brought EUR 439 million into Portugal. Compared to the same period of 2019, this is only 6.7% less.

Diversification of Investment Options Increases Every Month

The Portugal Golden Visa Program has eight different investment options. Yet, until 2018, almost 90% of all applicants chose the main real estate investment option. Since then, alternative routes gradually increase their popularity. In 2020, the ratio of investors who chose the main real estate investment option has been 65% so far. Since the minimum investment requirement for this option is higher than the others, the share of the amount generated by the main real estate investment option is 72%.

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Especially the EUR 350,000 property option has an impressive trend. In 2020, almost a third of all investments were made in this route. Also, the share of this option risen every month of the year.

When compared by their proportional growth rate, the strongest attack is from the Venture Capital option. The minimum investment requirement for this option is EUR 350,000. In the whole of 2019, there were seven applications made towards the Venture Capital. In 2020, 28 people chose this route so far. So, even at half the time, the Venture Capital option saw a 300% increase.

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Investor Diversification Increases the Resilience of the Program

In July 2020, 108 main applicants and 202 dependents received their residence permits. Among these permit holders, 21 are Chinese. Americans (12), Brazilians (9), Vietnamese (8), and Lebanese (7) investors follow.

Chinese investors always constituted the biggest portion of applicants of the Portugal Golden Visa Program. In 2016, 82% of the total number of investors were Chinese. Four years later, the ratio is around 50%. The trend continues in 2020, too. This year around only a quarter of all applicants were Chinese.

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