Greece: Golden Visa Residency and Citizenship
The amendment of Greece’s Golden Visa regulations was introduced by Law 4251/2015 through which the requirements for accessing the Visa were identified, providing the Greek Government in the end with a true “residence permit for property acquisition”.
The proposal of the Golden Visa in Greece, given the extreme crisis in the country and the need to attract new investors, is one of the most economic and interesting at the European level, especially considering the fact that, to maintain the rights granted by the visa, presence on Greek territory is not required.
The acquisition of a Golden Visa in Greece allows residence on Greek territory and, consequently, throughout the Schengen area for a period of 5 years, with the possibility of renewing this permit for another 5 years if the property investment is maintained.
It is not necessary to live in Greece to continue to benefit from the Golden Visa although, if Greek citizenship is desired, it is necessary to stay in Greece for at least 7 years.
Through the Greek Golden Visa, the foreign citizen is allowed to live on Greek territory and travel freely throughout the Schengen area without, however, being allowed to work in Greece.
Prerequisites for acquiring Greece’s Golden Visa are:
An investment of a value equal to or greater than €250,000 in property assets through contracts for sale, rental or purchasing a timeshare;
Having made an agreement lasting at least 10 years for the rental of housing, hotels or furnished tourist residences within tourist accommodation complexes, as provided for by article 8 paragraph 2 Law 4002/2011;
Also of great importance are the guidelines introduced by Art. 16 Law 4251/15, which introduces the possibility of granting a residence permit for 10 years to investors who are going to make investments in Greece with “a positive impact on the economy and on national development”.
The permit is granted for a period of 10 years, and if the investment continues on the territory it may be extended for another 10 years, guaranteeing the residence permit not only to the investor but also to other people (up to 10) in proportion to the investment made.