Most people are aware of – and choose – the route of buying property in order to obtain Citizenship of Spain. However there are other alternatives that are more appropriate to some individuals seeking a ‘Golden Visa’ in Spain.
Alternatives to acquire Spanish residency include the Residence Visa for Entrepreneurs and Business Activity (REM) and the Residence Visa for Capital Investors (RIC). Although they do not properly establish a possibility of acquiring residence directly by buying a property, they do offer investment alternatives to reside in Spain.
The Visa for Entrepreneurs and Business Activity (REM) includes investors who present a business project that is going to be developed in Spain and that is considered and accredited as of general interest and those who plan to enter and stay in Spain for a period of one year in order to carry out the prior procedures necessary for this purpose. An entrepreneurial activity will be understood as one that is innovative in nature with special interest to Spain.
For the second option, the Residence Visa for Capital Investors (RIC), significant capital investment is understood as an initial investment with a value equal to or greater than 2 million euros in Spanish national debt or with a value equal to or greater than 1 million euros in shares or social participations of Spanish companies or deposits banks in Spanish financial institutions.
The residence visas issued under these options constitutes sufficient title to reside in Spain for a year without the need to process the foreigner’s identity card. The possibility of processing the residence visa extends to the spouse and children under 18 years of age who would have to request also residency under this alternative.
After the visa has been approved for a period of one year there would then be the possibility to submit a residency request for two years and subsequent renewals if the business/investment conditions are kept. As a general rule a 10 years residency in Spain will allow a resident to apply for Spanish citizenship if all standard legal requirements are complied with.