Investing in Madeira

Investing in Madeira

with Portuguese citizenship

Simply a wonderful place to live

Tranquility | Security | Prosperity

Madeira – Portugal’s endearing little cousin

What a difference a few decades make. Track back to 1974. Portugal - an impoverished dictatorship, grimly hanging on to the ramshackle remnants of an African Empire – a country struggling to get by under the burden of a decaying dictatorship.

Fast forward 40+ years, and you find one of Europe’s most attractive and desirable destinations – in which to work, live, visit, or retire.

And there’s nowhere more attractive and more desirable that Portugal’s endearing little cousin, just 1,000 kms from its coastline - Madeira.

Madeira attracts people from across the world, lured by the idyllic climate, those beautiful coast lines, that warm, friendly welcome from its people and its high, yet surprisingly low-cost, standard of living. There are also outstanding tax benefits for Madeira and The Azores.

Is it any surprise that this jewel on Europe’s western edge is the first choice for many in the EU who seek a second citizenship?

Portuguese citizenship – what’s the appeal?

So many are drawn to this great country as a destination for a second citizenship. It’s easy to see why. As other parts of the world increasingly show signs of fracture and disorder (Ukraine, Hong Kong, Brexit and the United States), Portugal and Madeira grow even more attractive as havens of tranquillity, security and prosperity.

For its part, Madeira is doing all it can to attract investment by offering the following attractive benefits -

  • Dual/multiple citizenships allowed
  • Citizenship of the European Union
  • Low language requirements for naturalisation
  • Only 5 years to gain Portuguese citizenship
  • Outstanding tax benefits for Madeira and The Azores. 10-year preferential tax treatment for those eligible.
  • Flexible immigration pathways - via the D7 visa. Ideal for those with passive income from overseas, including from salaried remote work (not always available for comparable passive income residency programs in other countries).
  • Access to the Non-Habitual Residency (NHR) tax program - preferential tax treatment for a 10-year period for eligible new residents
  • Access to Golden Visa Residency scheme   - granting foreign investors immediate five-year temporary residency, with no need to live in Portugal.

Find out more about your Portugal visa options

Portugal at a glance

  • Timeline to citizenship: 5 years
  • Dual citizenship allowed? Yes
  • Language level for citizenship: A2
  • Member of Schengen zone? Yes
  • Population: 10,166,176 (2021)
  • Capital: Lisbon
  • GDP/capita (PPP): 33,400 USD (2021)
  • Government: Unitary semi-presidential representative democratic republic
  • Ruling party: Socialist Party (PS), center-left
  • Head of state: Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa
  • Official language: Portuguese
  • Currency: Euro
  • Time zone: Western European Time / Greenwich Mean Time (UTC/GMT)

Moving to Madeira, Portugal – pathways to consider

  1. Moving to Madeira as an EU citizen 
    If you’re a citizen of the EU/EEA, you can move freely to Madeira anytime and immediately get your five-year temporary Portugal residency card.

    If you’re an EU citizen with non-EU family members, they can move to Madeira by using the EU family reunification pathway.

  2. Moving to Portugal as a non-EU citizen
    Are you a non-EU citizen? Then moving to Madeira is slightly more complex - but still easier than many other countries in Europe.

i. There are two main options -

You’re planning to live in Madeira, making it your main base? Then one option is to apply for D7 residency - especially if you have income from remote work, as well as pensions, investments, dividends, or rental income. What matters is that your income should originate from outside Portugal.

ii. If you don’t want to live in Madeira full-time, you could consider the option of a Golden Visa. This requires a significant upfront investment, typically €500,000. Madeira offers several different routes to a Golden Visa beyond just real estate. These include investing in

  • venture capital funds
  • domestic property in Madeira or The Azores

or depositing 1 million euros into a Portuguese bank account.

After making your investment, you can apply for a five-year temporary residency permit, which leads directly to citizenship without needing to renew your residency along the way.

With the Golden Visa, you don’t have to live in Portugal, but you’ll need to spend at least two weeks every year in-country to maintain your residency status.

Healthcare in Portugal

Portugal has a publicly financed national health service (SNS), which offers coverage through its health centres across the country.

Coverage includes all care, apart from dentistry, and is available to all residents of Portugal. You’ll need to get a número de utente (health number) from your local health center.

Healthcare in Portugal is free for under 18s and over 65s. Otherwise, it’s available at a lower rate. If you’re hospitalised, medication administered during a procedure is free of charge.

Medical care in Portugal has improved greatly in recent years. It’s now ranked amongst the finest in Europe – above the likes of Spain, Italy, Ireland and the UK.

If you need medical attention in Portugal, you’ll first visit your local health centre (centro de saúde). In an emergency, you can go to the nearest hospital. The SNS also has a free 24/7 hotline available in English. Call 808 242 424.

For those preferring private health care, there are a variety of affordable options and plenty of private doctors.

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