Bulgarian citizenship by investment


February 16, 2020

A foreigner who wishes to invest in Bulgaria and obtain a permanent residence permit and later to acquire Bulgarian citizenship by investment, has several options to choose between.

The relevant legal base is art. 25, para 1, point 6, 7 or p.13, or art. 25 c of the Foreigners in Bulgaria Act /FBA/ and art.12a or 14a of the Bulgarian Citizenship Act /BCA/.

* The procedures under art.12a or 14a of BCA do not require a Bulgarian language exam, and the candidate may keep his current citizenship.

I. Bulgarian Citizenship by investment: 5 years Bulgarian citizenship options /art.12a of BCA options /

NB! Before applying for Bulgarian citizenship by investment, the candidate must receive a residence permit on one of the following grounds /options 1-5/, and then wait 5 years, keeping the investment:

Option 1: investment of more than 1 000 000 BGN /512 000 EUR/ or the increase of the investment with this size through the acquisition of:
1.1 shares in Bulgarian commercial companies, traded on the regulated Bulgarian market;
1.2 shares and treasury bonds /Bulgarian government bonds/ and derivative instruments issued by the State or by municipalities, with a residual maturity not less than 6 months;
1.3 ownership rights over an isolated part of the property of a Bulgarian commercial company with more than 50 percent state or municipal participation in the capital under the Act of Privatization and Post- privatization Control;
1.4 shares or stocks owned by the state or municipalities in a Bulgarian commercial company in compliance with the Act of Privatization and Post- privatization Control;
1.5 Bulgarian intellectual property – objects of copyright and related to it rights, patent-protected inventions, utility models, trademarks, service marks and industrial design;
1.6 rights under concession contracts on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria;

Option 2: investment of 1 000 000 leva in a licensed credit institution in Bulgaria: it should be an investment under a trust agreement for a period of at least five years, and the deposit is not used, with reference to for the same period, for securing of other cash credits from a credit institution in Bulgaria;

Option 3: investment in the capital of a Bulgarian commercial company: it should be a company, which shares are not traded on a regulated market, an amount not less than 6 000 000 BGN;

Option 4: certified investment under the Investment Promotion Act: The foreigner should be a person who carries out activities and is certified under the Investment Promotion Act, which fact shall be certified by the Ministry of Economy in accordance with art. 25c. FBA; A long-term residence permit by virtue of Art. 25, Par. 1, item 13 may be granted to a foreign citizen that performs activity for implementing and/or maintaining an investment which has received a certificate for class А, class B, or priority investment project pursuant to Art. 20, Par. 1, item 1 of the Investment Promotion Act.

At the Bulgarian trade company the foreigner should be:
– proxy of the company or procurator entered in the Commercial Register, or
– employed under contracts of employment for the performance of a key and/or controlling function in the scientific research, manufacturing, marketing or other basic activity of the undertaking or another activity necessary for investment purposes.

Option 5: investment in company & jobs: The foreigner should be a person who had made an investment in the country by contribution to the capital of a Bulgarian trade company of not less than BGN 500 000, where the foreign citizen is an associate or shareholder with registered shares and owns not less than 50 percent of the company’s capital, and as a result of the investment new long-term tangible and intangible assets have been acquired to the amount of not less than BGN 500 000 and at least 10 job positions for Bulgarian citizens have been opened and maintained during the residence period which fact shall be certified by the Ministry of Economy.

II. Bulgarian Citizenship by investment: 1-year citizenship options /art.14a of BCA options – fast-track program for investors/

NB! Before applying for Bulgarian citizenship by investment, the candidate must receive a residence permit on one of the following grounds /options 7-9/, and then wait 1 /one/ year:

Option 7: investment according to Art. 25, para 1, p. 6 or 7 FBA /Bulgarian government bonds and others – see options 1 and 2 above/, increased to a minimum of 2 000 000 leva /1 024 000 EUR/;

Option 8: investment in the capital of a Bulgarian company of min. 1 000 000 leva for a priority investment project, certified in accordance with the Investment Promotion Act ;

Option 9: the foreigner must have obtained 1 year earlier a permanent residence permit on the grounds of art. 25, para 1, p. 13 /see above option 4/ and be a shareholder with more than 50% of the capital of the company; the investment should be kept over the minimum for class A investment;
The foreigner shall be an associate or shareholder having registered shares owning not less than 50 percent of the registered company capital.

* Our law firm offers full assistance for the procedures of obtaining Bulgarian citizenship by investment: investment procedure guidance, visa D assistance, address registration, residence permit documents assistance, consultations and administrative procedures and research; accompanying the client before all the administrative authorities where he has to appear in person (The Ministry of Justice, The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, etc.); representation of the client with power of attorney where it is not necessary to appear in person; assistance for concluding rental contract if necessary, insurance, bank account opening; obtaining of President decree, ID card and passport, registration in the revenue agency and address registration in the municipality.

In addition, we offer the following services: representation and assistance before banks, other financial institutions, real estate agencies, notaries, etc.; bank account opening and maintenance; company registration and on-going legal services, property management legal services, accounting services, and many others.

Contact us for more information and guidance and request our free brochure “Bulgarian Citizenship by Investment”.

You may also be interested in the following articles:

Frequently asked questions: Bulgarian citizenship by investment

Receiving residency permit for Bulgaria through registration of Representative office of foreign company

Acquiring Bulgarian citizenship by foreigners

Benefits and advantages by obtaining residency permit in Bulgaria



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