Foreign Businessmen Invested BGN 43 M in Return for Bulgarian PassportsBusiness | May 5, 2015, Tuesday // 20:54| views
Bulgarian passport. File photo
Foreign businessmen invested BGN 43 M in the Bulgarian budget in 2014 in order to obtain passports and be granted a right to live in the country.
The most of the wealthy applicants for Bulgarian passports originate from Egypt and Lebanon, showed the data of the Interior Ministry, which had been requested by private bTV station.
The world trend shows that several thousand people expended a total of EUR 1.5 B in a year in order to obtain a second or third passport.
In 2014, 45 foreigners were granted the right to reside permanently or continuously in Bulgaria on the grounds of large-scale investment.
The procedure starts with depositing a document at the InvestBulgaria Agency, which proves that a foreign businessman invested BGN 1 M in the Bulgarian economy.
The agency is under the authority of the Economy Ministry and its sole purpose is to identify the availability of the million, but does not control the development of the foreigner's business in Bulgaria.
The control is exercised by the Migration Directorate of the Interior Ministry, which performs detailed checks.
In the past year, the most number of foreign businessmen obtaining a Bulgarian passport originated from Egypt - thirteen, followed by seven Lebanese citizens and five Russians.
The Passport Index interactive tool shows that the holders of a Bulgarian passport are among the most privileged in the world, as it grants access to 131 visa free countries.
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