Granting of Maltese Citizenship for Exceptional Services Regulations
Legal Notice 437 of 2020 prescribes the requirements for the acquisition of Maltese citizenship by naturalisation for exceptional services to Malta on the basis of exceptional interest in accordance with Article 10(9) of the Maltese Citizenship Act, Chapter 188 of the Laws of Malta. The Government of Malta has established a new governmental agency, Community Malta to be responsible for the administration of Maltese citizenship applications under various routes including investment.
Investment Requirements for Maltese Citizenship through Exceptional Services
Prior to submitting a citizenship application, the applicant shall provide a title to a residential property in Malta. If the Minister is satisfied that the applicant meets the necessary criteria, the applicant is to submit the relevant forms and supporting documents. The applicant shall not submit the citizenship application before he has completed the residence requirement.
The applicant is required to submit:
- Proof of residence in Malta for at least thirty-six (36) months or by exception of (12) months against a higher investment, preceding the date of application
- Undertaking to purchase a residential property worth at least €700,000 or rent a property for a minimum annual rent of €16,000, which shall be kept for a minimum of five (5) years from the oath of allegiance
- Undertaking to donate prior to the issue of a certificate of naturalisation, a minimum of €10,000 to a registered and compliant philanthropic, cultural, sport, scientific, animal welfare or artistic NGO or society
- Undertake to make a non-refundable investment of €600,000 when the application is submitted after 36 months of residence or €750,000 when the application is submitted after 12 months of residence
- Undertake to make a non-refundable investment of €50,000 for each dependant
Once this is submitted, the Agency shall evaluate the application and submit a report to the Minister responsible for citizenship. If the application is approved, the Community Malta Agency shall issue a Letter of Approval in Principle to the Applicant. The applicant shall be required to complete the process and take the Oath of Allegiance within six (6) months from the approval.
Inclusion of Family Members
Under the Citizenship for Exceptional Services Regulations, an applicant for citizenship must be at least eighteen (18) years of age and can include in his application:
- A spouse in a monogamous marriage or partner in another relationship having the same or similar status to marriage, including a civil union
- A child or an adoptive child of the main applicant or his/her spouse, who has not yet attained eighteen (18) years of age at the time of submission of the application
- A financially dependent, unmarried child of the main applicant or of his/her spouse, who has attained eighteen (18) years of age but has not yet attained twenty-nine (29) years of age, at the time of the submission of the application
- A financially dependent parent or grandparent of the main applicant or of his/her spouse, over the age of fifty-five (55) years
- A child or an adopted child of the main applicant or of his/her spouse, who at the time of the application is qualified as a person with disabilities.
The applicant and any of his dependants must submit a health form duly filled and certified by a recognised medical practitioner, clinic, hospital, medical or health institute attesting that the applicant and his dependants are in good health and are not suffering from any contagious disease and are not likely to become a burden on the Maltese public health system.
Due Diligence – Malta Citizenship by Direct Investment
Community Malta Agency shall administer the due diligence and verification process of the eligibility of the applicants. The Agency shall cause due diligence checks to be performed also by third parties including one or more internationally recognised specialised due diligence service providers, in respect of every applicant. Such due diligence checks shall be of a four (4) tier nature or more, as the Agency shall determine from time to time and may include security checks to be carried out by law enforcement authorities in line with the Data Protection legislation.
When submitting an application for citizenship under the exceptional investment route the following due diligence fees are to be paid:
- €15,000 – Main Applicant
- €10,000 – Each Dependant
- €15,000 – Benefactor (if applicable)
Eligibility for Maltese Citizenship through Exceptional Services
Applicants under these regulations shall be eligible if that person:
- Undertakes to take the Oath of Allegiance to the Republic of Malta
- Undertakes to promote the fundamental and democratic values of the Republic of Malta
- Undertakes to support the Maltese community in the spirit of social justice and equity
- Undertakes to render an exceptional contribution to the Republic of Malta through an exceptional direct investment in the economic and social development of the Republic of Malta
- Undertakes to declare that the applicant and his dependants are fit and proper persons to hold Maltese citizenship
- Undertakes to submit a medical examination report attesting that the applicant and his dependants are in good health and not suffering from any contagious disease and not likely to become a burden on Malta’s public health system
- Undertakes to submit a police conduct certificate
Grounds for Ineligibility
A person may not apply under these regulations if:
- The person or any of the dependants is or was indicted of an offence before an International Criminal Court or has been arraigned at any time before an International Criminal Court, whether such person has been found guilty or otherwise.
- The person or any of the dependants are listed with INTERPOL or EUROPOL
The person or any of the dependants is an actual or potential threat to Malta’s national security, public policy or public health
- The person or any of the dependants has been charged or found guilty of terrorism, money laundering, funding of terrorism, crimes against humanity, war crimes, defilement of minors, indecent assault and other serious crimes
- The person or any of the dependants has been found guilty or suspected or has criminal charges brought against him for any criminal offence punishable with more than one (1) year imprisonment, other than an involuntary offence.
- The person or any of the dependants is or is likely to be involved in any activity which may cause disrepute to the Republic of Malta
- The person or any of the dependants has been denied a visa to a country with whom Malta has visa-free travel arrangements with, and has not subsequently obtained a visa from that country
The person or any of the dependants is named or listed in international sanctions
- If an applicant makes a false statement or otherwise omits material information, the application may be suspended and considered inadmissible.
The number of certificates by Maltese Citizenship by Naturalisation for Exceptional Services by Direct Investment granted (excluding dependants) shall not exceed four hundred (400) per annum, and a total of 1,500 for the duration of the regulations.