Malta Citizenship Concessionaire

January 05 16:43 2018 by The Editor Print This Article

What is a Malta Citizenship Concessionaire?

In 2013, further to various representations by a leading Maltese law firm proposing the introduction of a citizenship by investment programme in Malta, the Government launched a competitive tender for consultancy in the design of a program for the issue of Maltese citizenship to individuals making significant contributions to the Maltese economy.  

The appointed concessionaire was charged with proposing a model for a Maltese citizenship program.

The word concession is misleading as, in fact, the Maltese Government granted no concession, no exclusivity and no special rights to the chosen concessionaire in respect of applications for citizenship under the Malta Individual Investor Program.  The concession is now focused on the international promotion of the program.  Contrary to common misunderstanding, the concessionaire is not involved in the handling, processing or of the conduct of due diligence in respect of any Maltese citizenship applications.  This process is fully conducted by an autonomous governmental agency, Identity Malta, that is vested with the sole authority and function of processing and recommending applications for consideration by the Minister for the grant of citizenship.
In fact, the Malta citizenship concessionaire, as concessionaire, doesn't hold any authorization to handle applications under the pre-established residency programs and has not had to comply with the rules for eligibility for citizenship agents laid down in the laws implementing the Maltese citizenship program.

What's the role of Malta Citizenship Agents?

Applicants cannot apply for Maltese citizenship directly with Identity Malta.  Under the MIIP Regulations, an applicant must be represented by a duly authorised Malta Citizenship Agent.  Issued under Maltese Citizenship Act, the MIIP regulations emphasise the importance of the accreditation of Malta Citizenship Agents to represent applicants under the Malta Citizenship by Investment Programme The MIIP regulations impose a number of qualitative and precautionary measures to ensure appropriate due diligence is performed pre-application by experienced immigration law specialists, and that citizenship application files are prepared within the quality guidelines issued from time to time by Identity Malta.

How are Malta Citizenship Agents accredited?

The first accreditation level granted by Identity Malta to handle applications and represent investors under the Malta Individual Investor Program, is the level of Accredited Person.  Qualified persons are accredited by Identity Malta Agency and need to meet the minimum of at least 3 successful applications per year.  Currently over a 100 consultants are accredited but only a handful are really active and experienced in what is a very specialised and niche sector. 

Successful accredited persons progress to Approved Agent status. Malta Citizenship Agents obtain Approved Agent status in accordance with the Individual Investor Programme of the Republic of Malta Regulations, 2013.