In efforts to bring in much-needed cash, the Greek interior ministry has through its ongoing investor visa program thus far issued 1,056 special visas to individuals who have invested more than 250,000 euros in Greece.
The investor visas offer five-year residency rights in return for real estate acquisitions or for strategic investments.
Alternate Interior Minister Ioannis Mouzalas said this week that the government expects the program to attract more interest, but in order for the it to be fully evaluated for its success, there must be a period of further promotion.
The so-called golden visa grants a five-year residence permit renewable for third country nationals who purchase — individually or through a legal entity — property in Greece valued at a minimum of 250,000 euros, or who have taken out a minimum 10-year lease in hotel accommodation or tourism facilities. The residence permit does not foresee a right to employment and citizenship can only be granted after seven years of residency.
Launched in July 2013, the program followed the model implemented in Portugal and Spain, where the required investment has been set at 500,000 euros.