What is the easiest country to get citizenship in the world? The ultimate guide

What is the easiest country to get citizenship in the world? The ultimate guide

Are you interested in moving to another country permanently? Maybe you are looking for greener pastures, or the country you reside in is hostile. Whatever the reason, finding a suitable country to relocate to is not a walk in the park. So, which is the easiest country to get citizenship in the world?

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easiest country to get citizenship
Passport on the desk. Photo: boonchai wedmakawand
Source: Getty Images

What is citizenship? It is a relationship between an individual and a territory in which the person owes loyalty to that nation. Furthermore, the individual is entitled to the nation's protection. However, the nation dictates when and how it chooses to recognise persons as citizens and when to remove it.

Types of citizenship

What is the easiest country to immigrate to? There are various countries where you can get citizenship effortlessly. However, it is essential to learn the various types of citizenship before proceeding.

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  • Citizenship via naturalisation: Refers to seeking citizenship voluntarily after completing specific legal requirements.
  • Citizenship by birth: You are a citizen if born in a nation different from your parent's.
  • Citizenship by descent: You can obtain such if at least one of your parents is a national of your target nation or if you are born abroad to a national of that nation.
  • Citizenship by investment: Some countries offer citizenship in exchange for financial input or investment. However, the type of investment involved varies according to the nation involved.

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What is the easiest country to get citizenship in the world?

Here are some of the easiest countries to move to, based on different types of citizenship.

1. Malta

easiest country to get citizenship
The Maltese passport is a passport that is issued to citizens of the Republic of Malta. Every Maltese citizen is also a citizen of the European Union and a Commonwealth citizen. Photo: hamzeh shatnawi
Source: Getty Images

Malta is among the most accessible places to get citizenship through investment. According to get golden visa, you can obtain Maltese citizenship through donations and investments made through Malta's Individual Investor Program (MIIP). However, applicants must meet a few requirements before receiving citizenship. They are as follows:

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  • If you have lived in the country for 36 months, you must contribute €600,000.
  • If you have only lived in the country for a year, you must contribute €750,000.
  • It is necessary to make a €700,000 real estate investment or lease a property for at least €16,000 per year.

Other general requirements are:

  • You meet the minimum stay requirement
  • You're over the age of 18
  • You have a clean criminal record
  • You have an international health insurance policy
  • You can provide biometric data

2. Antigua and Barbuda

Did you know that Antigua and Barbuda are among the easiest countries to get citizenship by investment? According to Astons, you can obtain citizenship by making a one-time donation of at least $100,000 to the country's national development fund. Another option is to invest $400,000 in a government-approved real estate project over five years. In addition to the financial requirements, there are also general requirements.

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3. St. Kitts and Nevis

According to Henley and Partners, the citizenship by investment program in St. Kitts and Nevis requires applicants to make a significant economic contribution to the country. This programme requires a minimum investment of $200,000 or $400,000 in a government-approved real estate project.

Another option is to make a non-refundable donation of at least $150,000 to St. Kitts and Nevis Sustainable Growth Fund.

4. Turkey

easiest country to get citizenship
Turkish passport on Turkish money, lira currency. Photo: themotioncloud
Source: Getty Images

Investors can access the European and Asian markets through the Turkey citizenship by investment program. According to Henley and Partners, real estate acquisition is a popular option in the country. In addition, the minimum is $400,000, granting you citizenship in less than six months.

5. Argentina

Anyone born on Argentine territory automatically gains Argentine citizenship. However, children of persons in the service of a foreign government, such as foreign diplomats, are a significant exception to this rule.

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6. Barbados

British nationals (citizens of the United Kingdom and Colonies) who were naturalised or registered in Barbados upon independence are eligible for birthright nationality.

7. Fiji

Every child born in Fiji on or after the commencement date acquires citizenship on their birthdate.

8. Jamaica

easiest country to get citizenship
A man with shoes and a backpack is standing on the asphalt next to the flag of Jamaica and the border. Photo: mirsad sarajlic
Source: Getty Images

Does Jamaica have birthright citizenship? Yes. According to the Jamaica Information Service, chapter 2 of the Jamaican constitution allows anyone born in Jamaica or outside of Jamaica to Jamaican parents is automatically entitled to citizenship.

According to Jamaicacgmiami, any person who was a citizen of the United Kingdom and its colonies on August 6, 1962, born in Jamaica is considered to have acquired Jamaican nationality by birth.

Also, birthright nationality applies to persons born within the territory, except if the parent has diplomatic immunity or is a national of a country at war with Jamaica.

Persons born upon aircraft or ships registered in Jamaica or unregistered aircraft or ships belonging to the government are also considered citizens.

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9. Italy

To become a citizen, you must have an ancestor who was an Italian citizen on March 17, 1861, or has been born in Italy after that date. The requirement is that the lineage is preserved. In addition, it indicates that no ancestor lost their nationality or obtainedit in another country before the birth of their next ancestor.

10. Hungary

According to Hungarian law, you may be eligible if your ancestor was born in Hungary before 1920 or between 1941 and 1945. However, you must be able to communicate in basic Hungarian and show that your lineage is unbroken.

Other countries you can quickly get citizenship by descent include:

  • Germany
  • United Kingdom
  • Spain
  • Romania
  • Lithuania
  • Ireland
  • Latvia
  • Israel
  • Luxembourg
  • Greece
  • Armenia
  • Portugal

Countries easiest to get citizenship by naturalisation

Citizenship procedures differ depending on the country and situation. Some countries may have to wait as little as two years, while others may wait as long as ten years. Many countries have shorter residency requirements for specific categories, such as adopted children, spouses, and refugees.

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  1. Argentina and Peru – Two-year residence requirement
  2. Poland, Paraguay, Israel, Serbia, Honduras, Ecuador and Canada – Three-year residence requirement
  3. Ethiopia, Brazil – Four-year residence requirement
  4. USA, Canada, Russia, Ireland, Chile, Albania, Belgium, Barbados and Australia – Five-year residence requirement
  5. Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Italy, Spain, Switzerland – Ten-year residence requirement
  6. Andorra, Austria, China, Palau, Saudi Arabia, UAE – Fifteen-year residency requirement
  7. Bahrain, Bhutan, Equatorial Guinea, Kuwait, Liechtenstein and Syria – Twenty-year requirement

Which is the easiest country to get dual citizenship?

What is dual citizenship? It is a legal scenario in which a person is treated as a national or citizen of more than one country under the laws of those countries simultaneously. So, which are the easiest countries to get dual citizenship? According to Travel, the nations below offer the easiest alternative to acquiring dual nationality.

  • Grenada
  • Ireland
  • Mexico
  • Canada
  • Malta
  • Peru
  • Singapore
  • Portugal
  • New Zealand
  • Australia

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Which is the easiest country to get permanent residency in Europe?

easiest country to get citizenship
Flag of Europe. Photo: Gil-Design
Source: Getty Images

NYSA Global states these are the easiest nations to get permanent residency in:

  • Portugal
  • Greece
  • Malta
  • Cyprus
  • Latvia
  • Montenegro
  • Spain

Which are the hardest countries to immigrate to?

World Population Review states these are the most complicated countries to immigrate to because of their strict laws and requirements.

Vatican City

There are four stringent requirements to become a citizen of Vatican City. The first three ways are to be a Catholic Cardinal residing in Rome or Vatican City, a Holy See diplomat, or someone whose occupation necessitates staying in Vatican City.

Some church officials and members of the Swiss Guard, which protects Vatican City, fall under the third category of people. Direct application to the church hierarchy is the last remaining route to nationality. Furthermore, a person loses their Vatican City citizenship after they leave the city.

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China

In China, it is pretty challenging to naturalise. However, according to the People's Republic of China's Nationality Law, foreign-born people can acquire Chinese citizenship by naturalisation if they have Chinese-citizen relatives, reside there permanently, or have another "legal cause" to do so.

How to become a Canadian citizen

According to The Government of Canada, you must meet the following requirements to be its citizen. They include:

  1. Be a permanent resident.
  2. Be present in Canada for at least 1095 days (3 years) in the five years immediately before your application.
  3. You must have filed taxes in Canada for at least three years in the five years immediately before your application.
  4. Applicants aged 18-54 must prove they are proficient in one of Canada's two official languages, English or French.
  5. Understanding Canadian culture and history by undertaking a Citizenship test is also a requirement.

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Frequently asked questions

  1. Which golden visa countries are the best? Portugal sits at the top of the list, followed by Spain and Greece.
  2. What countries are easy countries to get citizenship? Many Caribbean nations offer the service easily when you meet the required criteria.
  3. How many citizenships can you have? According to Get Golden Visa, you can have as many as you like but on the condition that the home nation allows dual or multiple nationalities.
  4. Which country gives citizenship fastest? Argentina is the country that offers the fastest citizenship by naturalisation in as short as two years.
  5. What is the cheapest country to get citizenship? Caribbean nations, Antigua and Barbuda, Saint Lucia, Grenada, Dominica, and Saint Kitts offer the cheapest alternative. The minimum investment into the local economy is between $100,000 and $150,000.
  6. What is buying citizenship? They are programs where you can pay a fee or invest in property in exchange for full citizenship and a passport.

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What is the easiest country to get citizenship in the world? There are many countries you can consider based on the above list. However, that doesn't mean getting nationality from other countries is challenging. European countries like Portugal offer some attractive packages, unlike Vatican City, which is considered the most difficult in the world.

Yen.com.gh recently published an interesting article about the world's 25 poorest countries and their GDP per capita. What are the world's poorest countries? They are countries with lower per capita gross domestic income (GDI) and gross domestic product (GDP) than other countries with more affluent populations.

Learn everything there is to know about these countries, including the reasons for their current financial situation.

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