Phnom Penh 2018 – In 2016, the world’s ultra-high net worth (UHNW) population grew by 3.5% to 226,450 individuals. Their combined wealth also increased in 2016, expanding by 1.5% to $27trn. New York remains the world’s largest UHNW city but two other global financial hubs, Hong Kong and Tokyo, maintained their top-three city status. If North America recorded the strongest growth in 2016, Asia was the only other region to register a significant increase in UHNW wealth, which rose by 3.5%. Asia’s market share of the global wealthy population has been increasing steadily and accounted for over 26% in 2016, up from just above 18% a decade earlier.
The number of wealthy individuals is also expected to expand rapidly in other high-growth Asian countries. The ten markets that make up the Association of Southeast Asia Nations (ASEAN) for instance form the 6th largest economy in the world and is projected to become the 4th largest by 2025.
Last year approximately 82,000 millionaires emigrated from their home countries. This is a 28% increase from 2015’s 64,000 wealthy migrants.
A growing trend amongst these wealthy Cambodian individuals is the desire to obtain a residency in developed countries or a second citizenship.
There are a good number of reasons why wealthy people apply to these programs including personal security and mobility.
In Asia and Cambodia in particular, the primary reason behind obtaining a second passport has been the limited travel-ability of Asians Cambodians. Cambodian nationals have limited visa-free access: 48 countries without visa.
Another significant driver for these citizenship programs is the need for HNWIs to ensure financial safety by protecting their assets but also to diversify their investments.
The world of capitalism has created more incentives for both individuals and businesses in Cambodia to migrate to various countries around the world. Mr. Bastien Trelcat, HLG’s Managing Partner, a legal and immigration expert commented, “More than 15 countries from all over the world are equipped with programs to welcome Cambodians for immigration and to offer privileges of a permanent residency or citizenship. Several countries that are popular among Asian investors, such as Canada, Australia, USA, UK propose permanent residency. The Commonwealth of Dominica or and the Republic of Vanuatu offer for instance investors and family member lifetime citizenship. “Besides travel visa-free, the government incentivizes other benefits in lower or free tuition fees, social security and affordable medical system, and even state allowances for investors as well as their family members.”
Mr. Bastien Trelcat continues “One needs to know that those programs have drawn all sorts of financial consultants, “improvised” agents, real estate developers and others who have been pretending to be qualified to provide professional opinion about these programs. Unfortunately, most of these companies turn out to advise in their best interests only or suddenly disappear with part of all of their client’s funds. Do prefer dealing with advisors who are located in Cambodia belonging to a regulated industry (law firm, accountant, banks), who can answer the phone and meet you at your convenience. I have seen too many clients who put their trust into consultants from Malaysia, China or Singapore with no presence in Phnom Penh, providing no advisory solution but just a few options which end up not suitable to the client eventually”.
HLG recommends the Top 5:
Thailand offers 5 to 20 years residency program starting from THB 500,000 to THB 2,000,000 with VIP services in terms of clearing customs and immigration formalities and banking services. Foreigners will be given privileges to reside in the Kingdom for 20 years visa through a membership of only THB 2,000,000 (USD 66,666).
- USA EB5
One can obtain a green card by investing USD 500,000 into a business that creates at least 10 jobs for the US Economy.
- Commonwealth of Dominica, 4 other Caribbean Nations, and the Republic of Vanuatu”
The Commonwealth of Dominica and Saint-Lucia offer a government-donation of a minimum of $100,000 or a real-estate investment options with internationally acclaimed hotels such as Siam Kempinski Dominica. Those island countries provide an access to citizenship and being able to travel to 125 countries without needing a visa (UK, Hong Kong, Singapore, Russia, China, Dubai etc.). Recently, the Republic of Vanuatu created the Development Support Program giving investor the possibility to become citizen of this beautiful Pacific island by making a donation to the Government of USD 220,000.
- Cyprus and Europe
Cyprus offer great flexibility given that it is within the European Union and therefore provide their citizens with the same EU rights provided to all EU nationals including legal protection and settlement rights throughout all 28 EU countries and Switzerland. Cyprus offer access to 159 countries for an investment of EUR 2 million in real estate. Other popular programs include Portugal where one need to purchase EUR 500,000 property to obtain a 5 years’ residency right, then permanent residency and ultimately citizenship after six years. UK is still very popular among Cambodian nationals and path to permanent residency starts at GBP 200,000. France offers a 4 year’s resident card renewable if the applicant invests EUR 300,000 in a project that creates job for the French economy. Such investment is a bridge to obtain a 10-Year resident card, Permanent Residence and French Citizenship for the investor and his family.
Australia secured the top destination for the second year in a row: 12,000 high net worth individuals moved to Australia in 2016. The program leading to permanent residency starts at AUD 1.5 mil. up to AUD 5 mil.
The 5 Programs mentioned above are just some of the countries designed to support immigration and facilitation of people and enterprises. The main objective of Harvey Law Group is to offer best investment consultancies to assist both Cambodians and expatriates in the migration all over the world. HLG has assisted in over 11,000 families around the world in mobility and will act as a consultant by facilitating, conducting various complex procedures, and reduce communication errors for those interested to migrate. Consequently, HLG help investors negotiate the best for their investments and reduce unnecessary costs that could occur throughout the process.
HLG is a leading multinational law firm specializing in corporate law and mobility with a worldwide reputation for representing high-profile clients and corporations. HLG was awarded for Best Immigration Law Firm at the 13th annual Macallan ALB Hong Kong Law Awards 2014 and 2017. HLG entered Cambodian market in January 2018 as the top immigration consulting law firm with the most comprehensive mobility packages.
HLG co-organizes the 6th edition of the Investment Immigration Summit, this year in April in Ho Chi Minh City where leading government officials and immigration industry specialists will compare and explore new and emerging opportunities for HNWI to invest and migrate through the world’s top citizenship by investment programs. More information on programs and speakers at https://investmentimmigrationsummit.com/hcmc/
HLG in Cambodia is a company dedicated to immigration consulting and do not provide advice on Cambodian law. For further inquiries or investment immigration program opportunities, please contact HLG Managing Partner, Bastien Trelcat, or Ms. Nymol Sokun, Business Development Manager.
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