Situated between Guadeloupe and Martinique, the Commonwealth of Dominica is a single-island nation in the Caribbean Sea.
The capital of Dominica is Roseau, a hub for the provision of financial services – particularly banking. A port city on the south-western coast of the island, Roseau is also at the heart of the country’s international trade.
Dominica’s official language is English and its currency is the East Caribbean dollar, a stable currency pegged to the United States dollar, and used by seven other Caribbean nations.
Dominica is one of the most forested countries in the world by percentage of land area, and has thereby earned the epithet ‘Nature Island of the Caribbean.’ The environment is of key importance to the Government, which is currently heavily investing in eco-tourism and clean energy as a means of championing and preserving the island’s natural habitat. A 2016 study by the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) placed Dominica as the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) nation with the highest percentage use of renewable energy, thanks to its extensive use of wind and hydropower.
Dominica is moving to a more service-based economy, with hotels and restaurants adding significant value to the island’s GDP. Nevertheless, agriculture – historically Dominica’s primary source of income – still brings significant revenue. This is reflected in the around 33 percent of the island’s landmass still being put to agricultural use, and being used to cultivate produce such as bananas, bay, and cocoa. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) projects a 2.5 percent growth rate for Dominica in 2016.
Dominica’s Citizenship by Investment Programme was launched in 1993 and is known for being one of the world’s most efficient and transparent citizenship options. It plays a major role in promoting social and environmental causes, particularly sustainable development.
The Programme was recently reshaped by the 2014 Citizenship by Investment Regulations to include diverse investment options and even stricter regulation processes, enabling stringent review of applicants.
The Programme currently offers two investment opportunities: a one-time contribution into the Economic Diversification Fund (EDF) or an investment in Government-approved real estate.
Funds transferred to the EDF have been instrumental in Dominica’s national development, particularly by the reconstruction of key infrastructure and public buildings, as well as by the financing of Dominica’s offshore and agricultural sectors.
The EDF option requires a contribution of US$100,000 for a single applicant – a value that increases as family members are added to an application.
The real estate option requires an investment amounting to at least US$200,000, to which a single applicant must add a US$50,000 real estate Government fee. The real estate must be held for a period of three years, increased to five years if the purchaser is also an applicant for citizenship by investment.
The Citizenship by Investment Unit (CBIU) is the Government authority tasked with managing and processing applications for citizenship under the Programme. To qualify for Dominica’s Citizenship by Investment Programme, applicants must have a clean criminal record and prove they are of good character, as well as pass a series of due diligence checks.
By regulation, the CBIU must respond to an application within three months of its submission. Application processing is however often much faster, taking between 45 and 60 days.
There are no interview or travel requirements. Applicants under the Programme are also exempt from residency requirements, whether before or after attaining citizenship. Applicants also need not learn English, or show a history of education or business experience. The Programme is one of the most accessible in the world.
Benefits of citizenship of Dominica include visa-free travel to over 120 foreign destinations, dual citizenship, and the opportunity to experience a different lifestyle in one of the most eco-friendly destinations in the world.