Italy has announced the suspension of its "golden visa" program for wealthy individuals from Russia and Belarus, a decision that comes one year later than initially planned.
The golden visa scheme allowed affluent applicants to obtain Italian residency by making substantial investments in the country.
This move aligns with Italy's broader efforts to address security concerns and uphold international standards. The suspension comes after significant criticism of the program's potential exploitation by individuals with dubious backgrounds.
According to a statement from the Italian Ministry of Interior, the golden visa program for Russians and Belarusians has been put on hold due to "geo-political dynamics and the objective difficulty of obtaining relevant information" about applicants from these countries.
The suspension was initially intended to be implemented in 2022, following concerns that the scheme could be exploited by individuals seeking to bypass sanctions or launder money. The delay has prompted calls for a thorough review and reform of the program to ensure its alignment with Italy's security and transparency objectives.
Critics have voiced concerns that the golden visa initiative could potentially grant entry to individuals with questionable intentions or backgrounds. The suspension underscores Italy's commitment to enhancing due diligence and transparency in its residency programs.
While the Italian government has halted the golden visa program for Russians and Belarusians, it is yet to be seen whether this suspension will lead to permanent changes or a comprehensive overhaul of the program to prevent potential misuse and security risks.
Italy's decision to suspend the golden visa scheme for affluent Russians and Belarusians underscores the country's dedication to bolstering security and ensuring that its residency programs maintain the highest standards of integrity and transparency.
By fLEXI tEAM