Why Is The EB-5 Visa So Attractive in South Africa?

Why Is The EB-5 Visa So Attractive in South Africa? image

Why Is The EB-5 Visa So Attractive in South Africa?

The EB-5 visa is an enticing option for investors across the world; it offers the opportunity for both the investors and their immediate family unit to enjoy permanent residence within the USA. Currently, however, it’s investors from South Africa who are seeing an incredible surge in this program. There are many reasons why this particular visa has become so popular, from the number of myths surrounding the similarities between the lifestyle Americans enjoy and South African lifestyles to the fact the visa is one of the least restrictive ones. After all, all an investor needs are the minimum capital and the right choice of EB-5 regional centre to create full-time jobs for 10 American citizens. Business experience is not needed (although it definitely helps), and an investor doesn’t need a specific degree or level of education. Additionally, with the United Kingdom being in turmoil over the Brexit plans, it’s no wonder why South African investors are turning their intentions towards the United States. But why is this the case?

The Rise in Demand

Over the past three years, the demand for EB-5 visas has grown quickly, seeing a rise in nearly 500%. This increase is staggering, and it’s one not many countries around the world can match. South Africa may well overtake European, Middle Eastern, and other African countries in the number of visas requested. As mentioned above, there are several reasons why applications are seeing such growth.

Firstly, the economic climate in South Africa in the last few years has seen a significant downturn. The country saw itself enter the first recession since 2009, which is understandably a worrying time for both citizens and investors alike. What’s more, the Rand saw its value drop by an astounding 20%. With such a shift in the economy within the last three years, it’s no surprise investors wish to move to a more stable environment, and many see the US as the answer to this problem. Key economic indicators for the United States have shown that the gross domestic product, which measures the nation’s production output, is expected to stay within the desired 2-3% growth rate. With the unemployed percentage for the US being currently 3.7%, this provides an excellent opportunity for an investor to move their business to the land of the free.

Secondly, the EB-5 visa is a key immigration program for granting a Green Card to both the investor and their immediate family. The family unit can consist of the applicant, their spouse and any unmarried children under the age of 21. The EB-5 is often referred to as a fast track to the much longed-for permanent resident status, but this isn’t always the case. However, it’s easy to understand why the Green Card is so enticing. There are numerous benefits for those who hold it. For example, children who receive a Green Card when they enter the US with their parents can apply to American universities on equal footing as American citizens. It is reported they will find it easier to gain employment after graduation, plus they will enjoy lower tuition fees and not have to go through the process of applying for a student visa.

The Lifestyle Similarities

One of the reasons why the EB-5 visa is so attractive to South Africans is the lifestyle America promises to provide. It’s the “land of the free and the home of the brave”; the education, healthcare, career, and quality of life options are hard to beat. However, South African investors can be mistaken in believing the area they choose to live in will be somewhat similar to what they currently enjoy in their home country. It’s often not the case. American lifestyles can vary significantly, from both South African expectations and from state to state. For South Africans investors, it’s highly crucial to research each element of their move to the USA, and of the EB-5 visa, to ensure they are not misled into a false sense of security. There are several regions in South Africa where investors believe they will enjoy the same lifestyle as they do now and they can with adequate preparation and due diligence.

Pretoria:

Based in the Gauteng Province, Pretoria enjoys an abundance of farming communities. Often, these farmers see comparisons between the rural lifestyle they enjoy in this region with that of Midwest America. It’s an incredibly attractive option to operate a farming enterprise in this area of the US. Therefore, Pretoria-based investors who believe a new life in the US is the solution should do their due diligence to understand the economic climate and predictions.

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Bloemfontein:

Much like Pretoria, the investors in Bloemfontein are primarily interested in establishing farming enterprises in the US. In contrast to their northern counterparts, however, Bloemfontein investors often have a more conservative outlook. While they do want to leave South Africa for a new life across the ocean, they are naturally more concerned about what it would entail. It’s a wise outlook to have. Only by taking the time to understand what the implications of the EB-5 visa are, and what it would mean for their business, their family and quality of life, can they make the right decision for their personal situation.

The EB-5 visa is an extremely attractive option for investors across the globe, but South Africa, in particular, is seeing an immense interest in the EB-5 program.

Port Elizabeth:

Located in the Eastern Bay Province, Port Elizabeth is a hotspot for retirees, with a strong demand for exclusive retirement villages being a driver for the economy. The retirement lifestyle in this city is one which sees retirees enjoying an array of outstanding restaurants, bars, shopping experiences and a high quality of life. It’s this enjoyable lifestyle which entices Port Elizabeth investors to apply for the EB-5 visa to move to the US. There are currently a vast range of retirement village lifestyles in states such as Florida.

Durban:

The great city of Durban is a hotspot for the “future of business.” It’s an area which is predominantly populated by younger entrepreneurs; those who have seen their finances rise through new industries, including technology. With the US having the home of many technological advances in Silicon Valley, amongst other areas, it’s no wonder why many young Durban investors believe they will find further success and fortune overseas. Investors can certainly hope to be successful here with a strong business plan and the right investment to get their enterprises off the ground.

Conclusion

The EB-5 visa is an extremely attractive option for investors across the globe, but South Africa, in particular, is seeing an immense interest in the EB-5 program. There are several reasons, as outlined above, but it’s crucial for investors to remember to undertake their own research and due diligence before applying for this visa. It’s easy to be misled over myths of how living in the US will be.

Download Your EB-5 Visa Step-by-Step Guide

This 10-step guide will take you through each step on your path to permanent residence using the EB-5 Visa Program - It's Free
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