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Dominica: The Frugal No-Brainer?

Imran Hussain

The mountainous Caribbean island nation of Dominica may not be on the radar of many high net-worth Arab individuals, but it should be for a multitude of reasons. Dominica is the lowest cost option for wealthy individuals seeking to obtain citizenship by investment, with options beginning as low as USD 100,000 of investment in the country plus requiring a person to person interview and other administration fees. However, there are no residential requirements and so citizenship can be granted without the need for any presence on the island.

Citizenship with Dominica boasts a variety of benefits for the investor: it is a Commonwealth nation which therefore grants Dominican citizens special privileges when visiting the United Kingdom. It also includes the ability to travel to over one hundred countries, including Switzerland, without the requirement of a visa. Clearly these benefits have great appeal to wealthy Arab nationals who would benefit from increased ease of global travel. Dominica is uncontroversial and involved in no warfare and so its citizens enjoy hassle-free travel without persecution based on nationality. Citizenship in Dominica also provides a safe place to travel to in times of political and/or economic unrest.

Another benefit is that citizenship provides access to an offshore bank account which offers greater flexibility concerning wealth management and tax planning.

For those seeking to invest in citizenship in Dominica, there are however some pitfalls which the individual should be made aware of. Although the island is breathtakingly beautiful with its geothermal hot springs and picturesque rainforests, it does suffer from some infrastructural problems. The lack of an airport capable of receiving large jet aircraft has impeded the island’s economic growth – currently it relies on the export of bananas and its fledgling tourist industry. There are concerns that an increase in visitor numbers and the rise of eco-tourism could damage the finely-balanced environment and so there may be some hesitance due to fears its economy could develop too quickly causing imbalances in wealth distribution.

Despite these concerns, Dominica is seeing a rise in tourism due to its beauty and tranquillity, it is a hotspot for beach dwellers and honeymooners. Featuring a year-round tropical climate, national parks, rare indigenous birds and the second-largest boiling lake in the world, Dominica is potentially a great tourist attraction.

Whether you are interested in seeking residence on the island or simply seeking a dual citizenship for the various benefits outlined above, Dominica should not be overlooked by the informed high-net worth individual looking for the most advantageous locations to invest in.

Posted in Articles, Editorial.

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