Italy’s strategic position in the heart of the Mediterranean Sea, coupled with its rich artistic and architectural heritage, makes it an optimal place to reside. As a founding member of the European Union and the third-largest economy in the eurozone, Italy offers its residents elevated standards of living, education, healthcare, and a distinct quality of life.
The Italy Residence by Investment Program, commonly referred to as the Italy Golden Visa, is tailored for foreign investors willing to make a substantial economic investment in the nation. In return, participants receive Italian residence and the privilege of visa-free entry to the Schengen Area within Europe.
- Freedom to travel visa-free throughout the Schengen Area in Europe.
- Residency in a nation characterized by its rich culture, thriving industries, and major global cities.
- Absence of a compulsory permanent stay requirement in Italy.
- Availability of top-notch medical care and educational institutions.
- Possibility of obtaining citizenship after 10 years of residence, subject to specific conditions.
Non-EU citizens can qualify for an Italian Investor Visa by making a singular investment in one of the following options:
- Investing in a Government Bond issued by the Italian Republic.
- Investing in a company that is incorporated and actively operating within Italy.
- Investing in an innovative startup.
- Making a philanthropic donation that supports public interests in areas such as culture, education, immigration management, scientific research, and the preservation of cultural and natural heritage.
Types of Investments and Fees
Investor Visa Program
To qualify, meet one of these three criteria:
Invest a minimum of EUR 2 million in Italian government bonds.
Invest a minimum of EUR 500,000 in Italian shares (reduced to EUR 250,000 when investing in innovative start-ups).
Contribute a minimum of EUR 1 million to projects of public interest in Italy, covering areas like culture, education, ecology, immigration management, research and development, arts, and heritage (this is a non-refundable donation).
The investment must be maintained throughout the visa’s validity. Spouses, children, and dependent parents of the primary applicant may also apply for a visa without the need for additional investment.
Elective Residence Program
An additional qualifying choice, the Elective Residence Program is suited for individuals who can demonstrate a stable annual income from abroad that meets specific criteria.
|Visa Type||Fees||Other Fees|
|Investor Visa Program||€250,000||€116 + €50-100 + €35 + translation and notarization fees|
|Elective Residence Program||€500,000||€116 + €50-100 + €35 + translation and notarization fees|
The other fees may vary depending on the individual applicant’s circumstances. It is always best to check with the Italian embassy or consulate in your country of residence for the most up-to-date information on visa fees and requirements.
What is the duration of the Italian investor visa’s validity?
The Italian investor visa is valid for two years, enabling legal entry into Italy and obtaining a temporary residence permit during this period.
How can I renew my Italian residence permit?
After entering Italy using the investor visa, your initial Italian residence permit, initially valid for two years, can be effortlessly renewed for an additional three years upon expiry. After five years of residence, you can choose to apply for permanent residence or opt for another three-year renewal.
Is Italian citizenship attainable for investors?
To become an Italian citizen, you must reside in Italy for a minimum of ten years. Citizenship can be obtained through naturalization, as Italy does not offer a direct citizenship-by-investment program. Italian citizenship grants various privileges, including the ability to travel, reside, and work freely within the EU, voting rights, and the potential to pass European citizenship to your children.
Can legal entities apply for the Italian investor visa?
No, the Italian investor visa is exclusively available to private individuals. Business entities are ineligible to apply.
Are there nationality restrictions for the Italian investor visa?
No, individuals of all nationalities, regardless of their home country, can apply for and potentially receive the Italian investor visa.
What types of companies qualify for investment through the shares option?
To qualify, the company must be a limited company incorporated and operating in Italy. It does not need to be publicly listed but can be if desired. The company must have been in operation for at least one year and be presently active. One viable option is establishing a staffing company to employ your team, though this may involve considerations related to employee visas and transfer pricing. Importantly, your entire company does not need to relocate to Italy to use this option.
What investment options are available to secure the Italian investor visa?
Eligible investment choices include government bonds, company stocks, making a donation, or investing in a startup. The investment type must be specified at the time of visa application and cannot be changed afterward.
Can my family join me in Italy if I hold an investor visa?
Yes, spouses and dependent children can legally accompany you and reside in Italy for the duration of your valid residence permit. In special cases, dependent children over 18 (e.g., those with disabilities) and parents over 65 who are financially reliant on the primary applicant can also join.
Am I permitted to work in Italy while residing there under an investor visa?
Absolutely, you have the freedom to engage in any employment status in Italy during your time as an investor, whether as an employee or self-employed.
Make Italy your second home
58,870,762 (2023 est.)
GDP (per capita):
US$37,773 (nominal, 2023 est.)
GDP (purchasing power parity):
US$48,338 (2023 est.)
Capital city: Rome
Time zone: Central European Time (UTC+1)
Total area: 301,340 km2
Languages: Italian (official), German (official in South Tyrol), French (official in Aosta Valley), Slovenian (official in Friuli-Venezia Giulia), Sardinian (official in Sardinia)
Currency: Euro (EUR)
Main industry: Tourism, manufacturing, agriculture, fashion, design
Schengen/EU: Italy is a member of the Schengen Area and the European Union.
- Cultural Riches: Italy boasts a wealth of historical, artistic, and architectural treasures, with iconic landmarks and museums at your doorstep.
- Scenic Diversity: Italy offers a range of landscapes, from beautiful coastlines to lakes and rolling vineyards, providing opportunities for outdoor activities.
- Culinary Excellence: Italy is famous for its cuisine, offering a wide array of delicious dishes and renowned wines, allowing residents to savor authentic Italian food and a thriving culinary scene
The materials contained in this page are provided for general information purposes only and are not intended to provide legal or other professional advice. Processing times and costs will vary depending on a number of factors. CitizenMatch is not responsible for any changes to the time and cost estimates; we can provide specific information on an individual basis. All rights reserved.