Citizenship of Malta

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March 30 19:09 2020 by The Editor Print This Article

The Malta Citizenship program, based on a significant financial contribution to and investment in Malta, was first introduced into Maltese law by amendments to the Maltese Citizenship Act published in November 2013 and the granting of Presidential assent in February 2014 to the Individual Investor Programme of the Republic of Malta Regulations (Legal Notice 47 of 2014).  A citizenship quota of 1,800 families was set for the whole programme.  

6 years later, the quota is soon to be reached - read more: Amendments Expected to Malta Citizenship Programme in 2020.

Eligibility to Malta Citizenship

Under the Malta Citizenship program, Malta Citizenship will be granted by naturalisation to foreign individuals over 18 and their dependents (children or ascendants) on the basis of a contributions and investments laid down below:

  • The main applicant must make approved investments in Malta amounting to €150,000. These investments may take the form of stocks, bonds, debentures, special purpose vehicles or other investment vehicles to be authorised by Identity Malta and should be maintained for at least five years.
  • The main applicant and dependants should be covered by a global health insurance policy. They should confirm that they are in a position to retain such a policy indefinitely.
  • The main applicant should purchase and hold a residential immovable property in Malta having a minimum value of €350,000 or lease a residential immovable property in Malta for a minimum annual rent of €16,000 for at least 5 years.
  • The following contributions shall also be made via Identity Malta to the National Development & Social Fund (70%) and the Consolidated Fund (30%) of Malta:
    • (a) Main Applicant: €650,000, of which a non-refundable payment of €10,000 shall be remitted as a non-refundable deposit prior to submission of the application;
    • (b)  Spouse: €25,000;
    • (c) Each child below 18 years of age: €25,000;
    • (d) Each unmarried child between 18 years of age and 26 years of age: €50,000;
    • (e) Each dependant parent above 55 years of age: €50,000.

IMPORTANT: Malta Citizenship Programme Amendments Expected in 2020

Malta Citizenship Applications

Citizenship applications must be made through Authorised Agents, legal and professional firms that represent applicants with Identity Malta, the authority set up to handle all aspects of immigration into Malta, especially the Malta Citizenship Scheme.

The shortest time frame within which a Certificate of Naturalisation may be issued under the Malta citizenship scheme is 6 months from date of application.  For cases which require further investigation or verification, the law allows a period of up to two years for the issue of the said certificate.

Duration of Malta Citizenship

Originally, the Maltese Government imposed a cap of 1,800 applications to the Malta Citizenship Scheme. However, after negotiations with the European Commission, the EU and the Maltese Government agreed that this cap would be unnecessary as nationality remained exclusively in the domain of national law of each member state of the EU.   The government has since stated that its position on the IIP will be considered again on reaching the cap but that it does not feel bound by a cap, even more so after the clarification on this point by the European Commission. 

Maltese Citizenship Impressions from the Expert

We spoke to Dr Jean-Philippe Chetcuti, Global Managing Partner at the Valletta offices of international law firm Chetcuti Cauchi Advocates who specialise in residence and citizenship by investment programmes around the world:

The Maltese Citizenship Programme legitimately places in the top tier of Citizenship by Investment Programmes in the world, offering a European way of life and standard of living, a Mediterranean quality of life and over 180 visa-free destinations. The Malta Individual Investor Programme is an exclusive programme for elite families able to prove their credentials and good standing.


Reference materials on Malta Citizenship