Government is looking at the pros and cons of an economic citizenship programme for Barbados.
Prime Minister Freundel Stuart said yesterday that he was in discussion with other officials on whether such an initiative – which makes it possible for foreigners with high net worth to receive full rights as a citizen through investment – should be introduced here.
“Actually, the minister in the Prime Minister’s Office Senator [Darcy] Boyce, and myself, and the Chief Immigration Officer have been talking this issue through. It is not something into which we can rush headlong, we have to look at all the implications,” he said.
Barbados currently offers special residency permits to high net worth individuals, but last year the then Parliamentary Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office with responsibility for Immigration, Senator Harry Husbands, said Government had decided against economic citizenship, a scheme which neighbouring countries like Dominica and St Kitts and Nevis have introduced.
Stuart said yesterday, however: “The world is changing very quickly, we are in a competitive global environment and we have to make sure that we always have a competitive edge if we are to be ahead of the game as it were and therefore that matter is receiving our attention as well.” (DP)