Portugal Golden Visa Ending
Updated: 24 August 2023 24 minute read

Portugal Golden Visa Ending: Not Really…

Portugal is changing its beloved Golden Visa program, again, in 2023.

On February 16th, the Portuguese government hinted at their intent to fix the housing problem by ending the Golden Visa program. Then, in an unforeseen move on June 20th, 2023, the parliament proposed changes to their ‘More Housing’ bill.

As of July 19th, 2023, the Portuguese Parliament approved the final version of the “More Housing” bill that significantly impacts the Golden Visa program. It now awaits the President’s approval to pass as a law.

On August 21st, 2023, the Portuguese President vetoed the proposed “More Housing” bill. However, it is likely that the Parliament will go ahead and reconfirm the bill in September. The President does not have the right for a second veto.

Let’s be clear: the Golden Visa isn’t saying its final goodbye. Only certain. investment routes are eliminated.

Here’s the scoop:

  • The proposed law will not be retroactive. So it will not affect ongoing applications and renewals. The Golden Visa game will be available by the current rules until the new ones are officially introduced.
  • Ongoing applications and upcoming renewals will switch the name to the ‘D2 Entrepreneur’s Permit’, still keeping the seven days per year stay requirement.
  • Residency by investment through fund investment, company formation, and donation will still go on.

Shutting Shop on Certain Investments —

Three main investment expressways will hit the dead end under the proposed shift. Here’s the nitty-gritty:

  • No more green light for capital transfers north of €1,500,000.
  • Real estate purchases will be off-limits. Yes, no more real estate that qualifies for a Golden Visa. 🙁
  • That includes the real estate renovation option, as well (30-year-old or older properties with a total investment of €350,000 or higher will be a no-go)

The Investment Paths Yet to Explore —

While some routes are getting blocked, new ones are unfolding. The residency scheme isn’t packing up, but gearing up with revamped investment choices:

  • Venture Capital Fund Investment: Bring in capital transfers of €500,000 or more for a slice of the venture capital fund pie. Ah, long as the funds are not involved in real estate. They really want that property option out the window…
  • Job Creation: Put at least 10 people on the payroll.
  • Research Funding: Pour €350,000 or more into research activities spearheaded by public or private science labs.
  • Cultural Heritage Support: Invest €250,000 or more in bolstering artistic production or nursing national cultural heritage back to health.
  • Commercial Company Investment: Make capital transfers of €500,000 or more, earmarked for setting up a commercial company based in Portugal, or boosting an existing company’s share capital, coupled with creating five lasting jobs.

The Road Ahead —

This updated and multifaceted take on the Golden Visa Program is designed to spur a wider spectrum of investment, paving new paths while retaining the program’s allure.

Speaking of allure, we’ve got something to help you understand this journey better. We turned to Barbara, a seasoned traveler from our GoVisaFree community who experienced the program first-hand. Don’t miss her deep dive into her journey with the Portugal Golden Visa. Do check out her illuminating case study.

Final Words

As we navigate this new rule, the Golden Visa’s facelift leaves some investment schemes on the table. It’s moving from traditional real estate and big cash infusions to more diverse, socio-economic development-centered investment routes. As they say, change is the only constant. 

While some may view it as an end, it’s the start of a vibrant, inclusive investment era for Portugal. For those eyeing the sun-kissed country, these amendments aren’t roadblocks but new paths to explore.

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