Friday 07 August 2020

Dutch efforts to sell residency permits to rich foreigners flop

50 euro notes moneyJust one rich foreigner showed an interest in a Dutch government scheme to encourage wealthy people to invest in the Netherlands in return for a residency permit and they were rejected as unsuitable, junior justice minister Fred Teeven has told MPs.

When the ruling was announced a year ago, Teeven said he expected some 300 people would agree to invest €1.25m in the Netherlands in return for a one-year residency permit.

The minister now plans to make the scheme ‘more attractive’, the Volkskrant reports.  This could involve making the residency permit valid for longer and changing the conditions attached to the accountants declaration about the origins of the investment cash. The current Dutch scheme also required the investment to generate jobs.

Most parties in parliament oppose the VVD minister’s efforts to attract rich foreigners, describing it as ‘morally unacceptable’.

Similar schemes are successful in other countries, the Volkskrant points out. For example, Canada has closed applications because of the high demand. But in Canada, €575,000 was enough to qualify, the paper says.

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