May 12, 2020

Citizenship for Cryptocurrency 2020: Advantages of Antigua and Barbuda

You have earned a fortune on cryptocurrency and want to hedge the risks? We recommend you obtaining citizenship by investment of Antigua and Barbuda. You can promptly get a “golden passport” of this country paying in cryptocurrency, but also invest profitably in a country that is actively developing its crypto-market.

Our regular readers are well aware of how useful it can be to obtain a second passport. Depending on where you were born, your opportunities and personal freedoms may vary. Moreover, being attached to a single country makes you follow its destiny.

Extra citizenship will expand your opportunities, potentially eliminating restrictions on business and investment abroad, as well as opening the door for visa-free travel to a large number of third countries.

Having a second citizenship, you will no longer be making plans based on the not always adequate political and economic decisions of a single country’s government. And if something goes wrong, you will always have a backup plan, a place that you could call your new homeland.

Antigua is one of the countries whose citizenship can be obtained expeditiously by making investments or donations to the host economy.

At the same time, Antiguan citizenship by investment is perhaps the most attractive of the existing ones. At least if you are a crypto-businessman, a successful miner or a crypto-investor. After all, recently it became possible to pay for your citizenship in cryptocurrency.

Citizenship for Cryptocurrency 2020: “Golden Passport” Terms and Conditions for the Cryptocurrency in Antigua

As part of an attempt to expand the target audience of its Citizenship by Investment Program and diversify available payment instruments, the Government of Antigua and Barbuda in October 2018 announced the start of accepting bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies as a valid means of payment available to foreigners who wish to obtain Antiguan citizenship by investment.

This step followed the amendments to the Law on the Citizenship by Investment Program. Antiguan Prime Minister Gaston Browne (pictured above) said that the use of bitcoins “expands the market” due to the presence of “a number of investors with crypto assets who may be willing to obtain citizenship but will only pay with cryptocurrencies.” As the politician noted, if “you do not accept cryptocurrency as payment, you can lose this market.”

Currently, applicants using bitcoins must pay about 11 BTC for the Antiguan “golden passport”, which is equivalent to USD 100,000 (the minimum investment allowed; the current rate of bitcoin to the US dollar at the time this article was written was 1 BTC to USD 9,140). Prime Minister Browne previously also claimed that crypto-payments will be converted daily into US dollars to avoid volatility of the cryptocurrency market.

Citizenship for Cryptocurrency 2020: How Antigua is Going to Use Blockchain and Cryptocurrency for Its Economic Development

This decision is also in line with the Antigua Government’s strategy to improve its reputation among crypto-holders and crypto-businessmen. Local authorities are pro-actively introducing new technologies including cryptocurrency transactions and blockchain to achieve an ambitious goal which is to transform the country into a blockchain- and crypto-capital of the Caribbean.

Antigua and Barbuda is currently the only country in the Caribbean to formally accept cryptocurrency as a means of payment under the Citizenship  by Investment Program, with four financial options available to its participants.

Firstly, you can make a non-refundable donation of USD 100,000 to the National Development Fund. Secondly, you can make a non-refundable donation of USD 150,000 to the new University Fund.

Learn more: Antiguan Citizenship for the Whole Family via a Donation to the University Fund

Thirdly, you can invest in a business. The following investment options are possible: individual investments in an approved business project worth at least USD 1,500,000 from your own behalf or an investment of USD 400,000 in an approved business made by a group of investors involving at least 2 people. In the second case, the total amount of joint investment in an approved business must be at least USD 5 million.

Fourthly, return investments in the real estate of Antigua and Barbuda are accepted for the amount of USD 200,000. This is a time-limited offer.

Choosing the latter option, keep in mind that investing money is allowed only in government-approved development projects the list of which is continuously expanding. –

Yet back in 2017, the Government of Antigua and Barbuda announced the development of amendments to the legislation aimed at legalizing cryptocurrencies in the country and stimulating their use.

In April 2018, the Government of Antigua decided to establish a cryptocurrency exchange in order to gain additional income sources for the national economy and to push the country to the “forefront of the new wealth-creating system”. Antigua also got an opportunity to benefit from the new financial technology spread across the world.

In the autumn of 2018, the Prime Minister’s Office held a seminar for high-ranking government officials and representatives of the financial sector, dedicated to blockchain technologies and cryptocurrencies.

The seminar was organized to educate members of the Government and other stakeholders about the current state of affairs in this area, as well as to inform them on the opportunities that are open to Antigua and Barbuda in terms of economic development using these new technology.

In his welcoming word to the organizers and participants, Prime Minister Browne underlined that this new investment model and business technology is innovative and break-through. This technology has a huge potential to transform the economy of Antigua and Barbuda.

He noted that Antigua and Barbuda had always been among the leaders of the Caribbean in terms of innovation, recalling that the previous Government under the leadership of Lester Bird had helped this Caribbean country to be one of the first to enter the global online gambling market in the 1990s.

The workshop examined the potential of these new technologies and focused on the experience of the Bermuda  Islands, a small nation that had recently decided to introduce policies, legislation and regulations governing the use of crypto-technology in Bermuda.

Blockchain and cryptocurrencies have been described as digital, transparent, secure means of safekeeping capitals and/or doing business globally. Various applications of this technology were considered in detail, including its use for business as well as for providing public services to citizens and residents. For example, issuance and driver’s licenses or certification of land ownership rights in the land register.

The seminar participants recognized that the country still has a lot of technical work to do to create a crypto-market. And to speed up this work, it was decided to appoint two task forces. One to address regulatory issues and the other to focus on business development.

Citizenship for Cryptocurrency 2020: Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Talks About the Opportunity of Paying for “Golden passports” at the Davos Forum

Prime Minister of Antigua shared the information on his government’s success in implementing bitcoin solutions, cryptocurrency regulation and the use of cryptocurrency, including the issuance of “golden passports” to foreigners, with the audience of the World Economic Forum in Davos that took place early this year.

In Davos, Antiguan Prime Minister said that his team is undertaking certain steps to implement the blockchain technology as soon as possible, including future adoption of the new law on establishing a legal platform for blockchain solutions and cryptocurrencies.

The Government’s idea is to digitize a number of services, processes and procedures using blockchain technology, including the storage of information on economic citizens, passports, driver’s licenses and other identification documents.

The politician also emphasized that cryptocurrencies are still accepted as payment under the Citizenship by Investment Program of this Caribbean jurisdiction. According to him, most Caribbean countries are heavily dependent on tourism, and there is a great need to diversify their economies. Blockchain and cryptocurrencies will help diversify the economy and stimulate entrepreneurship.

An even more efficient diversification instrument is the use of a tandem of cryptocurrencies and economic citizenship. After all, investments in passports have helped to strengthen the economy, increase non-tax revenues, and also attracted people with valuable skills to the country.

Not least because of this, the economy of Antigua and Barbuda is expanding rapidly. According to the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), Antiguan GDP grew by 3.5 percent in 2018 after increasing by 2.8 percent in 2017.

Revenues from the issuance of “golden passports” were used for paying off the national debt, health care development and pensions. This practice is relevant for many Caribbean countries experiencing financial difficulties after the 2008/2009 economic crisis.

Citizenship for Cryptocurrency 2020: You Can Pay for Your “Golden passport” with the DXCD Caribbean Cryptocurrency

It is quite possible that soon one will be able to pay for the Antiguan “golden passports” with a unique cryptocurrency of the Caribbean countries. In March 2019, it was announced about the intention of a number of Caribbean countries to use a new digital version of the local Eastern Caribbean dollar (Digital XCD; DXCD; Digital EC Dollar) as a legitimate means of payment based on blockchain.

Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) and Barbados-based fintech company Bitt Inc. (Bitt) signed a contract to conduct a pilot project of issuing the DXCD cryptocurrency on the basis of blockchain for subsequent circulation in the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU). The contract was signed at the end of February at the ECCB Headquarters in Basseterre (St. Kitts and Nevis).

The Eastern Caribbean Monetary Union is a division of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS). The ECCU includes Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, as well as St. Vincent and the Grenadines. The organization operates under the supervision of the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank. ECCU member states use the single currency, the Eastern Caribbean dollar that is worth 2.70 Eastern Caribbean dollars per USD 1.00.

Digital EC Dollar is expected to be the world’s first legal means of exchange in the form of a blockchain-based digital currency produced by the central bank. The digital Eastern Caribbean dollar will be distributed and used by licensed financial institutions and non-bank financial institutions at ECCU. DXCD will be used for financial transactions between consumers and sellers, including peer-to-peer transactions using smart devices.

The pilot project is part of the ECCB’s 2017-2021 Strategic Plan, the aim of which is to reduce the use of cash in ECCU by 50 percent, contribute to greater stability of the financial sector, and accelerate the growth and development of member countries.

Since the new digital currency is a legal means of exchange, it can be expected to be used for commercial real estate transactions, including those related to citizenship by investment in Antigua and the other four Caribbean countries that issue “golden passports.”

The digital currency introduction is a significant step for ECCB, bringing the organization closer to a new era of electronic and digital transactions. The use of the digital currency is expected to significantly spur the real estate market and other sectors, including tourism, by reducing cash transactions.

Citizenship for Cryptocurrency 2020: How the Use of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Will Make Life Easier for the Caribbean Passport Holders

Accelerated development of the cryptocurrency ecosystem and blockchain technologies in the Caribbean should also increase the value of local citizenship by investment, which in turn will attract additional attention of passport collectors to the region.

At the same time, it is highly probable that in the near future the collection of paper passports will sink into oblivion due to their disappearance. Imagine a world in which there is no immigration control, long queues, unnecessary procedures at airports, paper passports, paper money… In short, imagine that the world has become completely digital. How is that possible? The answer to this question is very simple. Blockchain technology will help to create such a bright future.

A geographically decentralized blockchain network contains unique data replicated and shared on various fail-safe servers. Blockchain remains unchanged and cannot contain fake or repetitive records. It works faster than any conventional systems and is cheaper to manage.

Blockchain can store biometric data from fingerprinting, retinal scans and facial recognition. Data stored in the blockchain can be encrypted to protect privacy. Access to the data may be limited. For example, for government employees only.

Blockchain technology has already covered the world. And soon the world will become fully digital, gradually abandoning paper identity documents such as passports and visas. This will protect the environment by slowing down extraction of timber for paper production as well as solve many other issues.

According to experts, governments will soon begin issuing passports, visas, driver’s licenses and other digital identification documents stored in a single international blockchain system of unique identification.

This will help governments save millions of dollars and protect the environment, save time for ordinary people, make it easier to catch criminals on the international wanted list, and prevent the forgery and distribution of false documents including “golden passports.”

Citizenship for Cryptocurrency 2020: How the Use of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Will Make Life Easier for the Caribbean Passport Holders – Forged Document Will Remain in the Past

Australia, New Zealand and many other countries have already switched to paperless visas. But e-visas do not solve the problem of forged documents. The only way to prevent abuse or counterfeiting is to organize at least a few countries to share data between national identification systems in the blockchain.  

At this stage, these systems are fragmented, they exist at the level of individual countries and do not use blockchain. But there are also regional alternatives. For example, the EU has a SIS warning database.

According to experts, countries should establish closer cooperation, relying on blockchain to catch wanted criminals, prevent human trafficking and improve security at borders.

Citizenship for Cryptocurrency 2020: How the Use of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Will Make Life Easier for the Caribbean Passport Holders – No More Long Queues

Many airports already use smart terminals to speed up the procedures of passenger boarding and disembarking, preventing queues. Software for such terminals only needs to be updated to enable blockchain support to check visas and passports, and these procedures will become even easier, more reliable and fast.

Citizenship for Cryptocurrency 2020: How the Use of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Will Make Life Easier for the Caribbean Passport Holders – Forget About the Airline Checks

Booking systems providing services to airline passengers can automatically check visas and passports, receiving data from the global blockchain. This will save a huge amount of time for air carriers checking visas and passports during passenger check-ins.

Citizenship for Cryptocurrency 2020: How the Use of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Will Make Life Easier for the Caribbean Passport Holders – Completely Digital Passports

The use of conventional paper passports often becomes a source of headache. Before you go abroad you should look at your passport to make sure you have got enough empty pages for visas and that your passport is still valid.

If you accidentally leave your passport somewhere or lose it (especially abroad), it can turn into a nightmare. Passport replacement is a complex bureaucratic procedure due to which you can get stuck at the border for days or even weeks.

Digital passports that you can open up in your phone or in other devices would allow you to resolve these problems. A quick scan of your passport/visa, as well as checking the blockchain code, will easily confirm your identity if necessary.

Citizenship for Cryptocurrency 2020: How the Use of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Will Make Life Easier for the Caribbean Passport Holders – Legal Checks

Identity data blockchain register provided by governments will speed up and facilitate the work of various companies engaged in comprehensive checks of individuals. This would include companies checking candidates for the Caribbean “golden passports.” – Citizenship by Investment 2020: Can Antigua’s Background Check Be Avoided?

Citizenship for Cryptocurrency 2020: How the Use of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Will Make Life Easier for the Caribbean Passport Holders – Digital Currencies

A powerful driver of the world’s transition to the digital era is the gradual cessation of the paper money use. Blockchain has already laid the groundwork for cryptocurrencies (e.g. bitcoin).

Every day, huge financial flows move in the cryptocurrency market. At the same time, transactions become cheaper, faster and, most importantly, more reliable than those where paper money is used. And all of that is thanks to blockchain.

Citizenship for Cryptocurrency 2020: How the Use of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Will Make Life Easier for the Caribbean Passport Holders – Moving Towards the Future

A single identification system based on blockchain, controlled and used by governments, can benefit not only individuals and government agencies, making all operations cheaper and faster. Such a system, according to experts, is actually able to accelerate the transition of human civilization to the next, qualitatively new, level.

Obtaining citizenship of Antigua and Barbuda for cryptocurrency, you can be in the world’s forefront to benefit from these changes. But remember not to delay your application for Antiguan “golden passport” and to apply as soon as possible to avoid queues given the growing demand.

And please keep in mind that when you apply for Antiguan “golden passport”, you need to be a law-abiding person and provide accurate and truthful data only in order to avoid the inevitable cancellation of your document in the future when the truth is revealed. Similar sanctions may follow, if you commit a major offense after obtaining Antiguan “golden passport” thus smearing your new country’s reputation.

Do not hesitate to contact us and we will introduce you to the most experienced consultant in the field of citizenship by investment. Please email us to [email protected] right now.