Kazakhstan is poised to become a regional first by offering its own investor visa program. Details have not been set in stone, but the program is allegedly in the later stages of development through the newly-established Astana International Financial Centre (AIFC).
The AIFC officially opened 1 January 2018 and is Kazakhstan’s effort to establish a regional financial hub for Central Asia, the Caucasus, EAEU, the Middle East, West China, Mongolia, and Europe. The government hopes to attract nearly $40 billion USD in foreign investment by 2025.
With such ambitious goals, the investor visa program is no doubt being developed to draw in a chunk of this capital. Those who invest in the AIFC will be granted permanent residence in Kazakhstan.
The investment amount will be between $100,000 USD – $200,000 USD and can be put into the AIFC three different ways:
- By investing into a fund listed on the Astana stock exchange.
- Through buying securities listed on the Astana stock exchange.
- By buying real estate within the borders of the AIFC.
Those granted permanent residence would be able to enjoy the benefits of health insurance, social security, and retirement benefits. Kazakhstan intends for the AIFC to be a financial free zone and levies no tax on its residents. There is also no worldwide taxation agreement within its borders.
There is currently no path to citizenship in the few details that have been released. If there were such a path, the Kazakhstani passport is fairly weak, ranking 67th on the Henley index and allowing visa free travel to only 71 countries.
It seems the main draw to the program will likely be one of regional entrepreneurship and investment into the AIFC with likely applicants coming from other Central Asian nations, Russia, China, and Turkey.
As Astana continues to launch the AIFC, keep updated through the press portal on the AIFC website. Any updates on the investor visa program will likely be published there.