DRAFT legislation currently before the Indian parliament to allow dual citizenship has been widely applauded by the biggest diaspora in the world as it is likely to provide significant benefits for its members.
The concept of ‘global Indians’ has grown through the phenomenal success of the Indian diaspora across the international business, media, and cultural communities.
Dominic Volek, Head of Southeast Asia at London based investment migration firm, Henley & Partners said: “There has been a noteworthy spike in interest recently among high-net-worth Indian nationals regarding residence-by-investment options.
“We have seen a significant increase year on year of Indian citizens looking to manage their global mobility challenges and invest in residence-based programs. Amending the constitution to allow dual citizenship would allow Indians to take advantage of belonging to multiple jurisdictions, providing them with greater freedom, opportunity, and ease of international travel.
“Moreover, holding two passports makes it easier to retain community ties within a country of origin while also being an active civic participant in a new home country.”
India’s opposition MP Shashi Tharoor introduced a bill a few weeks ago to amend the Indian Constitution, which currently requires that Indian nationals give up their passports once they have obtained citizenship of another country.
Tharoor argues that many Indians have migrated abroad for new opportunities- seeking access to a higher quality of life, better education, high-paying jobs in multilateral organizations, or merely for mobility and travel freedom and taking a foreign passport for convenience does not make them any less Indian.
According to the UN World Migration Report 2018, over 15.6 million Indians are living in other countries, making it the largest mass dispersion of a population globally.
The 2019 Wealth-X report states that India is one of the top 10 fastest-growing high-net-worth countries, alongside other Asian countries such as Bangladesh, China, the Philippines, and Vietnam.
Statistics show that there has been significant interest from Indian clients, centred on Greek, Maltese, and Portuguese residence programs in Europe, where minimum investments start at €250,000, €330,000, and €250,000, respectively.
Outside the EU and Europe’s Schengen Area, the Thailand Elite Residence Program, the UK Investor Immigration Program, the US EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, and various investor visas in Australia including the Significant Investor Visa (SIV) stream are also very popular options.