By means of Executive-Decree 343 of 2012 has improved the immigration legislation by creating a new Permanent residency category denominated as “Foreign applicants from countries with harmonious professional, friendly, economical and/or investment relations with the Republic of Panama”.
This new permanent category is only valid to applicants from certain nationalities, such as: Germany, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Brazil, Belgium, Canada, Spain, USA, Slovakia, France, Finland, The Netherlands, Ireland, Japan, Norway, Czech Republic, Switzerland, Singapore, Uruguay, Chile and Sweden.
The immigration program allows becoming permanent resident as any other current existent permanent resident program, as long as the applicant fulfills the general requirements along with the main category requirements.
Main Requirements for this Program
Pardini & Asociados Comments (P&A)
1. General Requirements stated on article 28 of Decree-Law 3 of 2008
P&A – This are the same requirements that any applicant must provide in order to apply for any immigration program. The most important documents to be provided and which are produced abroad are:
Note: The above mentioned documents must be duly legalized at the nearest Panamanian consulate or by means of “apostille” stamp.
2. Documentation that support the reasons why applicant requires obtaining a permanent residency in Panama. This documentation must support the economical (business) or professional activity to be performed in Panama.
P&A - We consider this residency program is very attractive, due to the fact that it opens the possibility to many current and future investors and professionals that currently don’t meet the criteria of other immigration program such as the Person of Means (US$ 300K investment), Reforestation (US$ 80K), Large Investor (US$ 160K) & and special law programs (US$ 150K to US$ 250K).
Although it is premature to evaluate the efficacy of the program, we are confident that the main purpose of this new option is to incentive more investment and normalization of many immigrants status. The main goal is to present all the documentation that clearly states substantial reason for applying and deserving to reside permanently in Panama.
3. Financial Solvency of applicant which has to be proved by means of the latest statement of account or a Bank certification
P&A – This requirement is quite easy to fulfill by applicants and therefore should not be considered as an obstacle. Applicant solvency can be fulfilled by presenting a local bank letter stating that account holders has a middle figure account (around US$ 4K to 5K).
4. Country of origin identification document.
P&A – This could be a driver license photocopy or National identification card. Nevertheless, since this document is issued abroad, we suggest to legalize the document at the nearest Panamanian consulate or by means of apostille stamp
5. Dependents documentation
P&A – Any application that includes dependents must have official documents proving the bond to principal applicant.
We are amazed of the simplicity of the requirements and hope this encourages more investors and visitors to come to Panama.
Lic. Eduardo Achurra
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