As part of its Immigration Rebalance Strategy, the New Zealand government has announced today that it will be replacing the Investor Plus and Investor 2 visa categories with a new, Active Investor Plus visa category.
The new category will open to applications on 19 September 2022 while applications under the existing investor categories will not be accepted after 11.59pm 27 July 2022.
While the policy details are yet to be released (expected September 2022), these are some of the key takeaways from the parliamentary announcements.
- Minimum investment sum of NZD$5 million for direct investments (see below) and NZD$15 million for indirect investments. (Compared to NZD$3 million under Investor 2 and NZD$10 million under Investor Plus).
- Flexibility to invest over a 3-year period as opposed to making all qualifying investments upfront and holding as per current settings.
- Investments will be subject to checkpoints during the investment period to ensure all nominated funds and transactions are legitimate. These are expected to be set at 18, 36 and 48 months.
- English language requirement for all applicants of IELTS band level 5. (Compared to IELTS band level 3 for Investor 2 and none for Investor Plus).
- New Zealand Trade and Enterprise tasked with connecting investors with investment opportunities and maintaining a dedicated investment aftercare programme (currently Investors can select their own investments provided they are deemed to be acceptable by Immigration New Zealand under the policy).
- Investors are required to spend at least 117 days in New Zealand over a 4-year investment period (currently 88 days over a three-year period under Investor Plus).
Subject to future policy clarification, the following investments will be acceptable under the category:
- Direct Investment – high growth potential NZ businesses.
- Private Funds – New Zealand domiciled funds which have Government funding including a mechanism for non-Government backed funds to become eligible.
- Philanthropy – includes a registered charity with at least two years of returns and IRD donee status.
- Listed equities – listed on the NZX and NZ domiciled.
The new process will cost NZD$4,750 for the immigration application fee plus NZD$3,150 immigration levy.
It is important to note that investor applications submitted by 27 July 2022 will be processed under the existing policy criteria.
This is a sudden and significant shift in New Zealand’s migrant investor policy intended to encourage active investment in New Zealand companies and attract more engaged and experienced investors in the process. It is also expected that the new settings will assist with New Zealand’s economic recovery.
At TODD & WALKER Law we have an expert immigration team who can assist with the latest Immigration news, information, and application requirement. We will announce more information on the new Active Investor Plus Visa category as it is released over the next few months. For assistance contact our immigration expert Hetish Lochan on [email protected] or +6421 075 8147.