Nationals of numerous southern African countries have been increasingly cut off from the world over the last two years due to flight and travel bans by a list of countries. This has been especially evident with the restrictions imposed at the discovery of the new Omicron variant.
The bans and restrictions have forced many South Africans to miss births, reunions, funerals and other celebrations with family members who live in other countries that South Africans are not able to enter due to these bans.
Travel experts however believe that a second residency may be beneficial for citizens.
GREATER GLOBAL MOBILITY AND VISAS
Most African passports do not offer great global mobility, but the South African passport does fare slightly better than other African passports when it comes to visa-free entry.
CS Global Partners CEO Micha Emmett, an advisory and marketing firm specialising in Citizenship by Investment programmes, said passport discrimination is not a new phenomenon for African nations.
“Even before the pandemic, those holding an African passport were subject to harsher rules and visa bureaucracy, interrupting the way Africans conduct business, access services or see loved ones. Now, the COVID-19 pandemic has become an added obstacle that Africans must face if they hope to move across borders,” Emmett told IOL.
BENEFITS OF A SECOND CITIZENSHIP
Emmett explained that the pandemic and subsequent travel bans have prompted many African individuals to obtain second citizenship through Citizenship by Investment programmes in other countries.
“COVID-19 has presented one of the greatest challenges of the 21st century, but for Africans, this has only exacerbated pre-existing issues. Second citizenship helps those that want to position themselves globally without the fear that their country of origin will hold them back,” she advised.
She said these programmes enable those who can make the required investment, depending on the nation, to acquire citizenship and life-changing benefits that come with the respective citizenship options.
ST KITTS AND NEVIS CITIZENSHIP OFFER
The Caribbean island of St Kitts and Nevis welcomes individuals and their families to settle there. Emmett says that families of four can acquire citizenship for the same price as a single applicant. This means a savings of $45 000 (R720 182). However, this offer is only valid until 31 December 2021.
“The programme is one of the most family-friendly options on the market and boasts the fastest route to second citizenship through its Sustainable Growth Fund option,” Emmett said.
“Those who can pass the necessary vetting processes, proving that they have a clean source of funds, gain access to increased travel freedom to over 160 destinations, including key business hubs. St Kitts and Nevis also offer alternative business prospects in one of the fastest-growing economies in the region with ties to financial superpowers like the United States,” she added.