New Zealand Active Investor Plus Visa Program
New Zealand’s new Active Investor Plus Visa was announced in September 2022, replacing its previous investor visas. Designed to attract valuable investors and encourage investment that delivers benefits to the local economy, the Active Investor Plus Visa allows applicants to live, work, and study in the country indefinitely, as long as they have met all the investment and time-in-country requirements.
Requirements of the New Zealand Active Investor Plus Visa Program
To qualify for residence, applicants must fulfill all of the following requirements:
- Invest between NZD 5 million and NZD 15 million over the course of four years
- Be in good health and of good character
- Spend 117 days in New Zealand across the four-year residence period
- Demonstrate English language ability
The following assets may be invested into and will be weighted accordingly to meet the NZD 15 million investment threshold:
- Direct investments into approved businesses. These will be given a 3x weighting
- Investments into approved managed funds (private equity or venture capital funds). These will be given a 2x weighting
- Investment into listed equities and philanthropy. These will be given a 1x weighting (and each of these is capped at 50% of the NZD 15 million investment requirement)
Procedures and time frame of New Zealand residence by investment
Applications must include completed application forms and should be accompanied by the appropriate fees and supporting documents. The processing time is eight to nine months from submission of the application to approval.
Investments can be made across three years (being maintained for a fourth year). After four years of keeping their funds in New Zealand, if they meet the requirements for minimum time spent in the country, investors can apply for permanent residence. After the four-year period and meeting the investment and time-in-country requirements, residents can support their parents’ application under the Parent Retirement category.
If families are included in the resident visa, they are required to go to New Zealand within 12 months of their visa being granted but are not required to remain in New Zealand for any minimum length of time. Family members aged 16 and over are also required to meet English language requirements, or they can choose to pre-purchase ESOL tuition to be undertaken once in New Zealand.
A visa holder may take up residence anywhere in New Zealand and can study at all schools and tertiary education providers in the country as a domestic student. To purchase residential real estate, visa holders must be usually residents of New Zealand. Those who spend only the minimum number of days in the country are likely to be required to obtain approval to purchase. This requirement is removed once they have lived in New Zealand and been physically present in the country for at least 183 days in the preceding 12 months and are a tax resident.
Acquiring citizenship after the New Zealand Active Investor Plus Visa Program
Successful applicants may apply for New Zealand citizenship after five years of residence. The New Zealand passport is among the top 10 in the world on the Henley Passport Index and facilitates access to over 180 destinations worldwide.