African businesspeople are seeking second citizenship to achieve travel freedom

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THE African business market is thriving and has been for a long time. With more and more African companies diversifying globally, there has been an increase in businessmen and women needing easier access to other countries in order to stay competitive. But what is the restriction? Besides the obvious Covid-19 horrors that have enveloped 2020, the main reason is the limitation of African passports.

While passports for various African countries are considered relatively strong, they do not allow easy or visa-free access to most high-profile countries across the globe. In a fast-paced world where connection is key you need to have accessibility and mobility.

Citizenship by Investment (CBI) Programmes have long assisted businessmen and women in gaining access to countries (and economies) across Europe, the Americas and Asia. Interestingly there has been a recent increase in interest from Africans for the Caribbean islands of Dominica and St Kitts & Nevis – both with well-established and highly rated programmes according to the CBI index, an independent study conducted by the Financial Times.

‘African passports can only get you so far. This compounded with struggling economies across the continent means that Africans need to diversify. You need a Plan B. CBI Programmes allow you to travel more easily, do business more easily and provide additional stability to your family and future generations,’ says Micha Emmett, CEO of CS Global Partners, a London-headquartered legal government advisory and marketing firm.

CBI Programmes offer a more even playing field when it comes to obtaining dual citizenship. No longer do you have to rely on European connections or a unique skill set to get into a country. The Caribbean islands, in particular, have started to attract more Africans with predominantly English-speaking Dominica providing a similar lifestyle and culture to many African countries. This combined with a quick approval time of only 90 days and access to 140 countries for visa-free travel means it is an appealing option.

‘Despite government uncertainty and unstable economies, African businesses are thriving and are competing on a global level. By gaining dual citizenship not only are you creating mobility, in a currently immobile world, but you are also ensuring you stay on the pulse of the global economy keeping African businesses firmly on the map,’ says Emmett.

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