Wednesday, 28 August 2013


By Linda Straker

Nationals of some countries will be restricted from applying for citizenship under the Grenada Citizen-ship by Investment Programme, while some who were turned down by other countries will also find themselves automatically getting turned down by Grenada.

A bearer of Grenada’s passport can travel visa free to 133 countries and Parliamentary Secretary for Information in the Office of the Prime Minister, Senator Winston Garraway, explained that among the questions that will be asked of all applicants are the countries where he/she has applied for citizenship and whether or not he/she was rejected.

“Once that person answers yes or we have proof that the applicant was turned down by a country to which we can travel visa free, we will also reject that person,” said Garraway, who explained that like St. Kitts and Nevis recently did, Grenada will also be establishing a list of countries whose nationals will be not able to apply for citizenship under the programme. St. Kitts recently suspended nationals of Afghanistan and Iran from its programme.

Grenada first established an economic citizenship programme in 2001, but rescinded the initiative because of a number of challenges which included abuse by agents and the lack of in-depth due diligence, which resulted in criminals of other countries becoming citizens of the countries allowing them to have a Grenada passport.

However, Garraway said that in-depth due diligence will be concluded on all applicants and as compared to the last programme becoming a citizen will not be an immediate achievement.

“The due diligence that was lacking in the pre-vious programme is no longer an issue. No stone will be left unturned and it will be mandatory for all applicants to reside in the island for at least 14 days after getting their citizenship,” he said.

The Citizenship by Investment Programme is one of the initiatives that the ruling Keith Mitchell Administration believes can bring in millions in revenue to the country. However, a number of organisations and individuals have openly objected to the initiative. Among the persons objecting is Senator Raymond Roberts, who described the legislation to legalising the programme as “prostituting” the island’s passport.

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