Maltese Citizenship & the Malta
Individual Investor Programme (IIP)

Legal, Tax, Advisory, Corporate

Until recently, under Maltese law, there were three ways through which Maltese citizenship can be acquired, namely:

  • By birth: people born in or outside Malta need to satisfy certain criteria for them to be eligible for Maltese citizenship, depending mainly on their date of birth;
  • By registration: spouses of a Maltese citizen after five years of marriage, widow/widower of a Maltese citizen, children born abroad to Maltese mothers prior to 01/08/1989 and persons who are of second and subsequent generations born abroad of Maltese descent (two ancestors born in Malta) are all eligible for Maltese citizenship; and
  • By naturalization: citizenship by naturalization is normally considered favourably if one is a former Maltese citizen; one is born abroad to Maltese parents who are returned migrants; one is born in Malta, holds a foreign citizenship and at least one parent is a Maltese citizen; one is born to parents who were non- Maltese but one of whom or both subsequently acquired Maltese citizenship, and if one is born abroad and is of Maltese descent. Foreigners married to a Maltese citizen can apply for citizenship after 5 years of marriage. Foreigners with no marriage ties to a Maltese citizen, but who have obtained residency, can apply for citizenship as well; however such applications will only be considered after 15 or 20 years on a case by case basis.

In addition to this, in 2013 the fourth option was introduced through the issuance by the Government of Malta, thereby establishing a programme to be known as the 'Individual Investor Programme of the Republic of Malta'. This scheme grants Maltese citizenship to foreign individuals and their families, who contribute to the economic development of Malta.

In order to qualify under this Programme, Applicants shall be persons who are at least 18 years of age and must make the following contributions and investments:

Malta Individual Investor Programme Contribution to the National Economic and Social Development Fund
Principal Applicant: €650,000
If applicable, add Spouse: + €25,000
If applicable, add for each Dependant aged under 18: + €25,000
If applicable, add for each Dependants aged over 18: + €50,000
Malta Individual Investor Programme Residential Immovable Property
Purchasing Immovable Property > €350,000
Leasing Immovable Property > €16,000
Such property cannot be let or sublet and must be retained by the applicant for a period of at least 5 years.
Malta Individual Investor Programme Investments
Stocks, bonds or debentures €150,000

Applicants are to commit themselves to provide proof of residence in Malta, and to provide proof of title to residential property in Malta in accordance with the IIP regulations.

The number of successful applicants (excluding dependants) shall not exceed 1,800 throughout the duration of the Programme.

Applications for the Individual Investor Programme must be submitted to the Maltese Authorities accompanied by the following documents:

  1. A certificate from a reputable health system that the main applicant and his dependants are not suffering from any contagious disease and that they are in good health;
  2. Police conduct certificates (need not be submitted at application stage but can be submitted at a later date, prior to approval of application);
  3. Evidence that the main applicant and his dependants are fit and proper persons;
  4. An undertaking to remit the required contribution when called to do so by Identity Malta;
  5. An undertaking to purchase or lease immovable residential property in Malta;
  6. An undertaking to make other investments as required by the regulations;
  7. An affidavit of support for each dependant who is over 18 years old.

EMD is in a position to assist you with the compilation and the submission of your application and liaise with the Government Authorities on your behalf. Where the original documents are in any other language, they are to be accompanied by an authorised true translation - we can assist you with the translation of the documentation.

Within ninety days of the receipt of the application, the Authorities shall verify that the application is formally correct, all relevant information provided and the applicant's background have been verified by one or more independent due diligence agents, and that all relevant fees have been paid.

Within thirty days from the date of completion of this verification, and following any further reviews and checks that the Authorities may deem necessary, the applicant's representative will be informed in writing by the Authorities that the application has been either approved in principle, refused or delayed.

Once an application is approved in principle, the Authorities will issue a Letter of Approval in Principle to the main applicant informing him/her that within four months from the issue of such letter he/she needs to provide evidence that the main applicant and any dependants are covered by a global health insurance policy and that a contract of purchase or lease to either acquire or lease residential immovable property at the values mentioned above has been entered into.

Within five days of the issue of the Letter of Approval in Principle, the main applicant will be instructed to remit the contribution less the non-refundable payment already recieved. Payment is to be received within twenty days of such instruction, after which the Authorities will notify the Minister to issue a certificate of naturalisation, following proof by the main applicant that he has been a resident of Malta for a period of at least twelve months preceding the day of issuing the certificate of naturalisation. This certificate of naturalisation shall only become effective and be made available to the applicant after an oath of allegiance is taken by the applicant. The application process takes between six to twenty four months, provided all the conditions are satisfied. The contribution is not refundable.

Due diligence fees (not refundable)

€7,500 for the main applicant

€5,000 for the spouse

€3,000 for each and every child aged between 13 and 18 years of age

€5,000 for each and every dependant unmarried child between 18 and 26 years of age

€5,000 for each and every dependant parent above 55 years of age

Passport fees (refundable in case passports are not applied for)

€500 per person

Bank charges (not refundable)

€200 per person

A quotation for our professional services tailored according to the client's requirements shall be provided upon request.

For further information kindly contact EMD at or on +356 2203 0000

The above information has been prepared for general guidance on matters of interest only and does not constitute professional advice. You should not act upon the information contained in this brochure without obtaining specific professional advice. No representation or warranty (express or implied) is given as to the accuracy and completeness of the information contained in this brochure, and the firm does not accept any liability and disclaims all responsibility for the consequences of you or anyone else acting, or refraining to act, in reliance on the information contained in this brochure or for any decision based on it.

For further information kindly contact EMD, Vaults 13 - 16, Valletta Waterfront, FRN 1914, Malta
Tel: (+356) 2203 0000 Fax: (+356) 2123 7277 Email:

The above information is intended to be of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any individual or entity. Although we endeavour to provide accurate and timely information, we do not guarantee that such information is accurate as of the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future. EMD Advisory Services Ltd, its officers, staff, associates and related/associated companies/firms shall not be responsible or liable for any action taken on the basis of the above information, or for any errors or omissions contained herein. Professional advice should be sought before any decision based on any matter referred to above is taken.