Country earns €838 million in investment through ‘Golden Visas’

By TPN/Lusa, in Business · 10-01-2019 11:27:00 · 0 Comments

Portugal garnered €838 million in investment through ‘Golden Visas’ in 2018, 0.6 percent less than the previous year, according to figures released last Friday by Portugal’s Borders and Immigration Service, SEF.

Last year, investment gained through the resident permits for wealthy foreigners totalled €838,532,935.27, slightly below the €844,088,897.77 the country registered a year before.
Portugal granted 1,409 Golden Visas in 2018, 4.2 percent more than the previous year.
Investment in December rose to €94,344,457.39, more than tripling the amount registered in the same month of 2017.
Last month alone, 149 Golden Visas were granted, 134 of which through the purchase of real estate.
China leads the list of golden visas granted (4,073), followed by Brazil (653), Turkey (295), South Africa (275) and Russia (243).
Portugal began to offer Golden Visas in 2012 to wealthy foreigners willing to invest at least €500,000 or create 10 jobs, a scheme that has helped fuel a property boom but has also created tension due to a corruption trial linked to it.

The trial involved 21 defendants for 47 crimes involving paying and accepting bribes and money laundering.
The country’s former minister of internal affairs Miguel Macedo was on Friday absolved in the “Golden Visa” case, after a court ruled he was “innocent”.
The court decided to absolve Macedo, who had been forced to resign over the scandal in 2014.
Macedo, resigned as minister in November 2014, after prosecutors formally charged him with favouring a group of people who wished to profit illegally from the issuing of golden visas by conducting real estate business with Chinese entrepreneurs who were seeking to obtain the permits.
The former head of Portugal’s Institute of Registries and Notaries (IRN), António Figueiredo, was sentenced on Friday to a four-year and six-month suspended prison sentence for corruption and embezzlement in the so-called ‘Golden Visa’ trial.
The former director of the Foreigners and Border Service (SEF), Jarmela Palos, who had been held on remand, was absolved for accepting bribes and two maladministration crimes.
Maria Antónia Anes, former secretary of the Ministry of Justice, was sentenced to a four-year and four-month suspended prison sentence for paying and accepting bribes.
Five defendants - António Figueiredo, Jarmela Palos, Maria Antónia Anes, Jaime Gomes and Chinese businessman Zhu Xiaodong face measures of deprivation of liberty.


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