Here's Where You Can (Still) Buy Residence Permits
There are several ways to obtain the citizenship of a country.
As well as simply being born there or being the descendant of one of its citizens, nations allow permits through marriage, adoption or naturalization - the latter of which is based on an application-related executive decision. Until the outbreak of the Ukraine war, additional "citizenship by investment" (CBI) programs were also offered in the three EU member states of Cyprus, Malta and Bulgaria.
As Statista's Anna Fleck and Florian Zandt note, these are more commonly known as "golden passports."
By investing a certain amount of money, it becomes possible to obtain citizenship without the bureaucratic hurdles.
Bulgaria and Cyprus have now abolished this method of granting citizenship, while Malta refuses to grant such passports specifically to Russians and Belarusians.
However, "Golden visas", i.e. residence permits granted in exchange for investments in the economy, still exist in several other EU countries, as the chart below shows.
You will find more infographics at Statista
Especially in Southern Europe, so-called "residency by investment" (RBI) programs are fairly common. While this practice was recently abolished in Portugal and Ireland, Spain, Greece, Cyprus and Malta, among others, still grant residency rights in exchange for economic investments. According to a 2019 study by the EU Commission, more than 130,000 people were either naturalized or granted residence rights under CBI and RBI between 2011 and 2019, which had generated a conservatively estimated total revenue of €21.4 billion for the countries.
Both practices have come under fire from officials.
As early as 2014, the EU spoke out against such programs, arguing, among other things, that they run counter to anti-discrimination requirements and could potentially encourage corruption and money laundering. In Portugal, for example, the RBI program, which has now been abolished, is considered to have fueled the real estate crisis.
Worldwide, the first CBI programs were launched in the 1980s on a few Caribbean islands, and some of them are still active there today. European non-EU countries that offer CBI include Montenegro and Turkey.
👇People have used stones, glass beads, salt, cattle, seashells, gold, silver, and other commodities as money at different times.
However, for over 2,500 years, gold has been mankind’s most enduring form of money.
Gold didn’t become money by accident or because some politicians decreed it. Instead, it became money because countless individuals throughout history and across many different civilizations subjectively came to the same conclusion: gold is money.
It resulted from a market process of people looking for the best way to store and exchange value.
So, why did they go to gold? What makes gold attractive as money?
Gold has a set of unique characteristics that make it suitable as money.
Gold is durable, divisible, consistent, convenient, scarce, and most importantly, the “hardest” of all physical commodities. In other words, gold is “hard to produce” relative to existing stockpiles and is the one physical commodity most resistant to inflation of its supply. That’s what gives gold its monetary properties.
Anyone can opt-out of CBDCs by using physical gold and silver to store and exchange value.
Physical gold is optimal for long-term savings and large transactions. The best way to do that is with widely recognized gold bullion coins, like the Canadian Gold Maple Leaf or the American Gold Eagle.
However, gold coins are generally inconvenient to use for small transactions. Silver coins are more practical here.
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