Armenian Citizenship By Investment Program

As of 2022, the Armenian passport is ranked 64th in the world by the Arton Capital Passport Index and 78th by the Henley & Partners Passport Index.

Foreigners who invest 150 thousand dollars in the Armenian economy can obtain Citizenship. Still, before that, they must meet several criteria necessary for Citizenship.

This is defined by the draft of the relevant decision of the Armenian Republic Government presented by the police. It is now in the stage of public discussion and is posted on the unified website for publication of draft legal acts – e-draft.

Armenia Citizenship by Investment – Exact Price, Launch Date, and all important details

Benefits of the Armenian Passport

The Armenian passport is a valuable document that allows visa-free entry to 65  countriesOpens in a new tab.. Armenian Citizenship can be passed on to future generations, or it can be waived. 

Access to countries restricted for citizens of Western countries such as Russia, China, Iran, and Uzbekistan.

Armenian citizens in Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan are exempt from work permit requirements. They can benefit from benefits in the areas of labor law, social protection, medical treatment, taxation, immigration, etc…

Armenians must obtain a visa before traveling to the EU/Schengen countries. Still, visa-free entry may become possible in a few years. 

The United States offers 10-year B and E-2 business visas to Armenian citizens.

Citizenship passes to future generations.

Ethnic Armenians are eligible for Citizenship without having to meet any language or residency requirements. However, it should be noted that to establish Armenian origin, specific formal requirements must be met. 

Having an Armenian name or speaking Armenian fluently is not enough. You will need proof that you (your parents or grandparents) are an ethnic Armenian. The most common way to do this is to show a baptismal certificate issued by the church confirming Armenian origin. 

In some countries, Armenian heritage may also be mentioned in government documents ( ex., birth certificates, family records, etc.)

According to the laws of Armenia, a child born to an Armenian father or mother can quickly obtain Armenian Citizenship regardless of the place of birth or residence. 

Once you acquire Armenian Citizenship, your minor children can automatically receive Armenian passports, and your spouse can apply for Citizenship.

In other words, your children and grandchildren can obtain Armenian passports even if they do not live in Armenia.

Benefits of Dual Citizenship

Obtaining dual Citizenship in Armenia gives you an “insurance policy” if:

  • You have to leave your country for economic or political reasons,
  • You want to increase the confidentiality of information, 
  • Your first passport is lost, confiscated, or expired, 
  • You decide to renounce your current Citizenship. 

Suppose the economic or political situation in your country worsens. In that case, you can use your Armenian passport to temporarily or permanently move to Armenia with your family. 

Having a second passport can help you avoid problems related to your country’s foreign policy and domestic legislation (for example, banking difficulties or increased tax burden). 

A second passport can be helpful if you want more privacy or if your first passport has expired, been lost, or confiscated. 

What countries grant Citizenship in return for the investment?

There are certain countries where you should invest in that country’s economy if you want to acquire citizenship besides your own. The investment amount differs depending on how valuable that Citizenship is. 

Because it is one thing, for example, to get Citizenship in Great Britain and another to get Citizenship in Malta. Let’s note that at the moment, there is quite a large flow of people in Armenia who want to get AR citizenship.

Who are those interested in Armenian Citizenship?

The desire to come to Armenia is mainly due to the Russian-Ukrainian war. Foreigners are trying to avoid military enlistment in the Russian Federation Army or see an uncertain future in both countries. They are trying to transfer their economy to other countries, searching for security, certainty, and assurances. 

However, there are other risks in our case that are absent in the case of countries that apply this procedure freely. For example, in a country like Malta, there is no risk, and the important thing is to make money. Based on this, the Citizenship of that country is acquired by those who are possibly under criminal prosecution, have security problems, and are under threats. These circumstances are the same for Malta because the investment that can flow into the country is more attractive.

Despite the thrilling investments in Armenia, the ambiguous security situation is also a problem. It is necessary to assess all these risks and make such a decision. Currently, citizens of the Russian Federation have established businesses in Armenia. They can make the primary transactions according to their status. Still, it is not a requirement for obtaining Citizenship in the Armenian Republic

Rights to Obtaining land in Armenia

RA has set restrictions for foreigners in some domains, taking certain risks into consideration. For example, RA citizenship is required to acquire land in Armenia. The new law can bypass these risks by paying appropriate amounts or obtaining RA citizenship.

How long will it take to obtain Armenian Citizenship?

The old law offers a fast, easy and inexpensive naturalization. The process of obtaining an Armenian passport usually takes less than three months. 

Once your application is approved, you can obtain an Armenian passport and national identity card within a few days. This requires only a short list of documents.

However, when the new law passes, obtaining Citizenship will take half a year. In the case of any country, there is a time limit. You don’t immediately invest and become a citizen. 

Becoming a citizen means that one’s center of economic interests is also, in addition to other things, located in that country․ Being in the center of economic interests implies many things; you must purchase real estate and live there.

Who is eligible for Armenian Citizenship with the new law

According to Article 13, Part 4 of the Law on RA Citizenship, the Citizenship of the Republic of Armenia can be granted to persons who have provided exceptional services to Armenia. As well as those who have made significant contributions in the fields of economy, science, education, culture, healthcare, and sports.

The law requires describing the significant deposit and the evaluation criteria defined by the Government’s decision.

According to the draft decision of the Government of the Republic of Armenia, “On defining the description and evaluation criteria of significant contributions in the fields of economy, science, education, culture, healthcare, sports,” clear criteria have already been defined for the mentioned sector.

Required Criteria to Obtain Armenian Citizenship by Investment 

The description and evaluation criteria of a significant contribution to the field of the economy are:

  • Gratuitous provision of funds in the amount of at least 150,000 US dollars to supplement the inviolable capital of a foundation established to carry out activities in the field of education or science,
  • investment in the charter capital (acquisition of a share) of a commercial organization in the amount of at least 150 thousand US dollars for at least 10 years,
  • purchase of government bonds in the amount of at least 150 thousand US dollars for at least 7 years,
  • purchase of the real estate in the amount of at least 150 thousand US dollars, for at least 10 years, with a cadastral value approximated to the market value of the real estate,
  • investment in any investment fund (approved by the state) in the amount equivalent to at least 150 thousand US dollars for at least 10 years,
  • Establishing a company in the high-tech and/or information technologies field in the Republic of Armenia, whose capitalization must be equal to more than 1 million dollars, provided that the center of vital interests of the founder is located in the Republic of Armenia,
  • Establishment of a branch in the Republic of Armenia of a foreign information technology company with a capitalization equal to 100 million or more, which has 500 or more employees in the Republic of Armenia,
  • establishment of a venture fund equivalent to 80 million dollars or more in the Republic of Armenia,
  • the financial investment of an amount more than or equal to 100 thousand dollars in high-tech companies or venture funds,
  • having 20 or more years of work experience in high and (or) information technology companies listed on the New York, Frankfurt, or London stock exchanges,
  • Long-term (not less than 5 years) active cooperation in the international structures of the postal sector, as well as making financial, material, and technical investments in the field, in the amount of money equivalent to at least 250 thousand dollars.

Required Contribution to Obtaining Armenian Citizenship 

The criteria for describing and evaluating a significant contribution in the fields of science, education, culture, and sports are:

  • Having at least ten years of scientific or scientific-technical activity, 
  • A scientific degree, an invention patent, 
  • Having state awards or honorary degrees in the field of science 
  • Being the author or co-author of at least five scientific articles published in prestigious international scientific information databases during the last ten years,
  • A significant contribution to Promoting and development of Armenian culture, 
  • Long-term active cooperation with Armenian figures or organizations of culture and art, 
  • Significant participation in the preservation of Armenian culture, public and charitable activities, international recognition, and the applicant’s reputation can be used to strengthen and popularize the global position of Armenian culture. 

As well as: 

  • taking an active part in the development of Armenology, philanthropy, 
  • long-term Armenian preservation activities, 
  • making significant investments, 
  • Taking prize places in world-prestigious, highly-rated competitions and festivals, 
  • Implementing innovative-experimental projects and recording effective results, 
  • contributing to Armenian preservation or for the benefit of the Republic of Armenia to act.

The description and evaluation criteria of the significant contribution to the RA healthcare sector are:

  • Having the scientific title of docent or professor in the healthcare field
  • Awarded a state order or medal for active charitable activities in health care and other outstanding services.
  • Foreign medical workers who provide medical care and service in the medical organizations of Armenia or the Republic of Artsakh under martial law conditions can also receive RA citizenship.

The project can become legal only if approved by the Government. And now, citizens can express their suggestions and objections on the public discussion platform.

Araz Tavitian

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