Real Estate
Real Estate in Malta

Malta citizenship
and residency
for investors

Maltese residents and citizens visit the Schengen countries visa-free and can live in a developed European country.

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The Maltese law provides investors with special paths for obtaining residency by investment or citizenship by naturalisation for exceptional services. Investors pass Due Diligence, make non-refundable contributions, and buy or rent properties in the country. Different procedures, financial conditions, and time frames apply to getting each status, namely citizenship, permanent residence or a residence permit.

Maltese residents can live and study in the country and visit other Schengen states for 90 days in half a year.

Malta is an EU member. Thus, Maltese citizens can live, work and study in any EU country.

Difference between Malta citizenship, permanent residence and a residence permit

The statuses provide different rights. First and foremost, the number of visa-free destinations vary.

Malta citizenship offers the maximum number of opportunities. A Maltese passport holder can freely visit all states with visa-waiver agreements with Malta. The list includes 185 countries.

Maltese residents can freely travel to the Schengen countries only. Thus, there are 26 visa-free states.

Permanent residence is granted for life. A residence permit must be renewed every year.

All three statuses allow the holders to visit Malta anytime, even if the country’s borders are closed.

Safe haven For the whole family
€30,000 Minimum investments
3+ months Obtaining period
Individual meeting

Need help in choosing a status?

Our experts in investment migration will analyse your tasks. Our Compliance Department will carry a preliminary Due Diligence. This approach will help you get the best suitable status.

Victoria Atanasova Head of the Maltese office, lawyer for international and economic law
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Benefits of Malta citizenship and residency


Visa-free travel

Maltese citizens visit 185 countries visa-free, including the UK, the USA, Canada and Australia. Residents can travel across the Schengen Area without visas.


Safe haven

Investors and their families can enter Malta anytime with residence permits or passports. They can live in Malta for an unlimited amount of time. In comparison, a Schengen visa allows the holder to spend only 90 days in half a year in Malta.


Access to services
of European banks

Malta residency or citizenship provides access to services of European or US banks. Investors open bank accounts abroad to keep savings in a hard currency, fasten payments with business partners worldwide, and decrease transaction costs.


Living in a developed EU country

Many investors obtain Malta citizenship or residency to relocate to a country with high living standards. The passport allows the holder to live and do business in any EU state. The investor’s spouse and children can also study and work in any EU country. They don’t have to get special visas or permits in the chosen country of residence.

A residence permit allows the holder to live, do business and study in Malta. An investor with a residence permit or permanent residence cannot work in the country.


Quality education

The investor’s children don’t need special permits to study in any EU country if they have Maltese passports. They can get student visas on a fast-track basis to study in the UK.


Business development
in Europe

An investor can register companies in Malta and other EU states. Many investors transfer their businesses to Malta using opportunities for beneficial taxation.

Registration of a business in the EU helps quickly forge partnerships in developed countries. Geopolitics has little effect on the business.


Income from investments
in European real estate

Villas and apartments located in the developed European countries bring up to 15% of rental income per year. However, many EU states like Austria allow investors to buy properties only if the buyers are EU residents or citizens. Malta citizenship or residency gives access to investing in liquid European real estate.

Why you can rely on Immigrant Invest

Immigrant Invest has operated since 2006. During this time, we helped 1,000 investors and their family members get residence permits, permanent residence or citizenship in Malta.

Investors apply for Malta residency or citizenship only through a licenced agent; one cannot apply by themselves. Immigrant Invest has passed government Due Diligence and got a licence to prove it. Thus, we can act on the investor’s behalf during application procedures in Malta.

Our offices work in 5 countries. The lawyers assist investors at each step. Thanks to an individual approach to each investor’s task, we have the highest success rate in the industry: 99% of our clients’ applications get approved.

License № AKM‑IMIN‑22

Financial requirements and time frame for obtaining Malta citizenship or residency

The investor gets a residence permit or permanent residence under special government programmes. It is less expensive to obtain a residence permit than permanent residence. However, a residence permit must be renewed yearly, while permanent residence is granted for life.

Obtaining citizenship by naturalisation for exceptional services by direct investment requires the highest expenses and the longest waiting time. The passport is granted if the investor meets conditions under the Maltese Citizenship Act.

Status Citizenship Permanent residence Residence permit
Legal basis for granting a status Maltese Citizenship Act
Legal basis for granting a status
Malta Permanent Residence Programme
Legal basis for granting a status
Malta Global Residence Programme
Legal basis for granting a status
Investment amount €690,000+
Investment amount
Investment amount
Investment amount
Time frame 1 or 3 years
Time frame
6–8 months
Time frame
3–4 months
Time frame

Malta citizenship

Starting from 2020, the investor can become a Maltese citizen by naturalisation for exceptional services by direct investment. The path suits investors ready to pass the most strict Due Diligence on the CBI market and contribute at least €690,000 to the country's economy.

The investor gets a residence permit first, and after maintaining residency for a year or three years, they can apply for citizenship. The investment amount is €150,000 more if applying in a year than if applying three years after getting a residence permit.

A spouse, children under 29, parents and grandparents over 55 can get citizenship with the investor.

Difference in investment amounts when applying after 1 or 3 years of residency

In a year In 3 years

€750,000 as a

€16,000+ per year as a
rental price


€700,000+ as a
property purchase price

€610,000 as a

€16,000+ per year as a
rental price


€700,000+ as a
property purchase price

A detailed guide

Malta permanent residence

The Malta Permanent Residence Programme has been operating since 2015. The programme is suitable for investors who want to get a life-long status of a Maltese resident or relocate to the country. There is no requirement to live in Malta permanently. The permanent residence ID card must be renewed every five years.

The investor passes Due Diligence, makes a non-refundable contribution, buys or rents a property and for the first five years confirms assets worth more than €500,000.

A spouse, children under 18, parents and grandparents can become Maltese permanent residents with the investor.

Difference in investment amounts when renting or buying a property:

Rent Purchase

€98,000 as a

€10,000+ as an
annual rental price

€68,000 as a

€300,000+ as a
property purchase price

A detailed guide

Malta residence permit

The Malta Global Residence Programme was launched in 2013. The programme is suitable for investors who want to become Maltese tax residents. The change of tax residency is mandatory. In addition, the investor mustn’t spend more than 183 days a year outside Malta. However, there is no requirement to live in Malta all the time. The investor pays an annual tax of at least €15,000.

The investor passes Due Diligence, makes a non-refundable contribution, and buys or rents a property.

A spouse, children under 25, siblings, parents and grandparents can become Maltese residents with the investor.

Difference in investment amounts when renting or buying a property:

Rent Purchase

€6,000 as a

€8,750+ as an
annual rental price

€5,500 as a

€220,000+ as a
property purchase price

A detailed guide

Which status suits your tasks best?

Malta is one of a few European countries that offer investors to get a residence permit, permanent residence or apply for citizenship. Most European developed countries limit their offers with Golden Visa programmes.

Permanent residence
Residence permit
Max number of visa-free destinations
Citizenship 185 countries
Permanent residence 26 countries
Residence permit 26 countries
Minimum investments
Residence permit
Citizenship €690,000+
Permanent residence €150,000+
Residence permit €30,000+
Shortest obtaining period
Residence permit
Citizenship 1 or 3 years
Permanent residence 6 to 8 months
Residence permit 3 to 4 months
Life-long status
Citizenship or Permanent residence
Citizenship Life-long status
Permanent residence Life-long status
Residence permit Renewed every year

Frequently asked questions

Which immigration programmes for investors operate in Malta?

Two government-approved Maltese programmes offer a residence permit or permanent residence by investment. The programmes differ in time frames, investment amounts, and additional requirements. For example, the Malta Permanent Residence Programme requires to prove that the investor has assets worth at least €500,000.

The Maltese Citizenship Act provides the path for naturalisation for exceptional services by direct investments.

What benefits does a Malta residence permit by investment provide?

A residence permit allows the investor to live in Malta with the family and run a business in the country. They can travel to the Schengen countries without visas, presenting residence ID cards. Maltese residents can stay in other Schengen states for up to 90 days out of 180.

The investor becomes a Maltese tax resident and pays an annual tax at a flat rate of 15% but not less than €15,000.

The residence permit obtained under the Malta Global Residence Programme must be renewed every year. The investor proves they have paid the tax and got a residential address in Malta.

Another investor’s duty is not to spend more than 183 days a year outside Malta.

What benefits does a Malta permanent residence by investment provide?

Permanent residents have the right to live in Malta and visit other Schengen countries without visas. There are no requirements to spend all year in Malta, have proficiency in Maltese or English and prove the knowledge of the country’s history.

However, the investor must prove that they possess assets worth at least €500,000, including €150,000 as financial assets like deposits or securities.

Permanent residence is valid for life, but an ID card of a permanent resident must be renewed once every five years.

What benefits does Malta citizenship provide?

The Maltese passport allows citizens to move around the EU countries without limits. For example, to live in any state of the region without obtaining additional permits. If the investor’s children get Malta citizenship, they can study at any EU university without getting student residence permits.

Malta has visa-waiver agreements with more than 180 countries, including the USA, the UK, and Australia. Thus, Maltese citizens can travel the world freely and enjoy the cosmopolitan lifestyle.

Can I get Malta citizenship by investment?

Malta or any other EU country doesn’t have a citizenship by investment programme.

The Maltese Citizenship Act allows investors to apply for citizenship a year or three years after obtaining a residence permit. The application might be approved if the investor has passed strict Due Diligence and is willing to invest at least €690,000 in the country’s economy.

Which status allows an investor to relocate to Malta with the whole family?

A residence permit, permanent residence and citizenship allow the investor to move to Malta with the family.

Unlike residency, citizenship provides more options on where the holder can live. Malta is an EU member state, and citizens of an EU country can live, work, run a business, and study in any country in the region. EU citizens don’t need separate permits for relocation. For example, a Maltese citizen can freely live in Austria.

How much to invest in obtaining Malta residency or citizenship?

Expenses depend on the status the investor wants to obtain. A residence permit requires the least investments. Costs start at €30,000.

The investor must spend at least €150,000 to get permanent residence. The investor should be ready to contribute at least €690,000 to the country’s economy when applying for citizenship.

The time frame differs too. A residence permit is the fastest to get. The earliest time the investor can apply for citizenship is a year after starting the procedure.

Schedule a meeting

Let’s discuss the details

Schedule a meeting at one of the offices or online. A lawyer will analyze the situation, calculate the cost and help you find a solution based on your goals.

Zlata Erlach Caribbean Investment Program Expert
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