Mauritius passport for sale: Travel visa free to Russia, China and Schengen

Mauritius passport for sale: Travel visa free to Russia, China and Schengen

Mauritius announced last week that it would be offering foreigners the chance to obtain Mauritian citizenship in exchange for a non-refundable $1 million. For an additional cost of $100,000, foreigners can also purchase citizenship for their dependents. These monies would be paid into the country’s sovereign wealth fund. This is the first time any country has offered citizenship in exchange for money in its wealth fund.

Governments in Africa and across the world make increasing Foreign Direct Investments in their countries as a matter of economic policy. Hence, many have adopted radical policies that they hope would attract investments into their economies. One of such policies is a new policy adopted by the tiny African island country of Mauritius.

For foreigners who cannot afford $1 million, they can purchase Mauritian citizenship with $500,000, and also $50,000 per passport for family members. Mauritian passport holders have access to 131 countries around the world, and the passport is 33rd according to the Henley visa restrictions index, which measures the travel freedom that citizens of a country enjoy through their passports.

Also in January of 2017, Serbia, Seychelles, and Mauritius became the only countries whose citizens may travel to either China, Russia or the Schengen Area without needing visas. Economists in the country believe Mauritius can be used as a springboard for investments in China and India.

Mauritius is home to more than a million people, all of which are an ethnic and religious mix of African, French, Chinese, and Indian people. It is the top-ranked African country on the 2017 World Bank’s Doing Business Index, and 49th in the world. Despite its favorable business environment, the country still wants to attract more foreign investment.

Mauritius has a long history of political stability; the country has witnessed peaceful handover of power multiple times since its independence in 1968. With a good governance record, and competent regulatory system, it is no wonder the country is also the most competitive economy in sub-Saharan Africa.

Mauritius economy was majorly sugar-based in the 1970s, with sugarcane still occupying more than 80 percent of its cultivable land. Sugar was its major export for decades, but now the country has managed to diversify its economy successfully. It has done this by investing heavily in its manufacturing sector. Initially, it focused on the production of textiles and clothing, but has now placed a priority on exporting jewelry and watch components.

The only drawback to Mauritius’ policy is that it would still not be able to solve its tax haven problem. It is already being used investigated as a haven for tax evaders in fellow African countries; its new policy will encourage more to come. However, it also encourages citizens of countries in which their passports are not powerful to purchase one in Mauritius.

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Author: Alain St.Ange

Alain St Ange has been working in the tourism business since 2009. He was appointed as the Director of Marketing for Seychelles by President and Minister of Tourism James Michel. He was appointed as the Director of Marketing for Seychelles by President and Minister of Tourism James Michel. After one year of After one year of service, he was promoted to the position of CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board. In 2012 the Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands regional Organization was formed and St Ange was appointed as the first president of the organization. In a 2012 cabinet re-shuffle, St Ange was appointed as Minister of Tourism and Culture which he resigned on 28 December 2016 in order to pursue a candidacy as Secretary General of the World Tourism Organisation. At the UNWTO General Assembly in Chengdu in China, a person who was being sought after for the “Speakers Circuit” for tourism and sustainable development was Alain St.Ange. St.Ange is the former Seychelles Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports and Marine who left office in December last year to run for the position of Secretary General of the UNWTO. When his candidature or document of endorsement was withdrawn by his country just a day before the elections in Madrid, Alain St.Ange showed his greatness as a speaker when he addressed the UNWTO gathering with grace, passion, and style. His moving speech was recorded as the one on the best marking speeches at this UN international body. African countries often remember his Uganda address for the East Africa Tourism Platform when he was a guest of honor. As former Tourism Minister, St.Ange was a regular and popular speaker and was often seen addressing forums and conferences on behalf of his country. His ability to speak ‘off the cuff’ was always seen as a rare ability. He often said he speaks from the heart. In Seychelles he is remembered for a marking address at the official opening of the island’s Carnaval International de Victoria when he reiterated the words of John Lennon famous song… ” you may say I am a dreamer, but I am not the only one. One day you will all join us and the world will be better as one”. The world press contingent gathered in Seychelles on the day ran with the words by St.Ange which made headlines everywhere. St.Ange delivered the keynote address for the “Tourism & Business Conference in Canada” Seychelles is a good example for sustainable tourism. This is therefore not surprising to see Alain St.Ange being sought after as a speaker on the international circuit. Member of Travelmarketingnetwork.

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