Citizenship by Investment

Citizenship by Investment  

Introduction: Bulgaria joins Schengen

Bulgarian law provides a fast-track route to citizenship by investment.

This is an accessible, transparent and respectable gateway into the European society, way of life and economy.

On 31st March 2024, Bulgaria will join the Schengen Area, making it possible for a holder of Bulgarian residence to travel visa-free to the remaining Schengen States. This enables you to avoid the inconvenience of visa applications, border checks and enables Bulgarian citizens to feel maximum equality with the citizens of the remaining 28 Member States.

The requirement is to invest, rather than donate to a government fund. Investors may expect to get back the principal invested and earn a return.

Multiple types of investment are eligible. Investors are not limited to investing in real estate. Investors are also not required to create a minimum number of jobs.

Investment Classes

An investor may invest in, e.g:

  • shares of mutual funds, including ETFs
  • an AIF (alternative investment fund) such as a VC fund or private equity fund with a Bulgarian-focused strategy
  • an interest in a Certified Priority Investment Project (CPIP)
  • direct investment in corporate bonds of or shares/stocks of a company listed in Bulgaria
  • direct investment in the capital of a private Bulgarian corporation
  • and others.

Investment Amount

Baseline case:

  • Investment: BGN 1,000,000 (€512,000)
  • Holding period:  ~ 6 years

Family Members

  • Your husband/wife can apply for citizenship, too
  • Your children qualify without further investment
  • Any child of your children also qualifies without any further investment

You do not need to:

  • Live in Bulgaria (but you could)
  • Live in Europe (but you could)
  • Open a bank account in Bulgaria. You can use your existing banking relationship abroad
  • Donate (you need to donate €650,000 in Malta)
  • Have your identity as a new citizen disclosed to the public (this happens in Malta and has happened in Cyprus through leaks)


  1. Obtain pre-approval by the Bulgarian Investment Agency
  2. Make the investment
  3. Apply for long-term visa D
  4. Apply for Permanent Residence Status and Permanent Residence ID card
  5. Apply for citizenship after holding the PR permit for 5 years


  • NBLO can advise if your investment is eligible, help with documentation, liaise with government bodies, and assist at each step.
  • We are a law firm with a wealth of experience in nationality law and private clients generally. We deal with applications for citizenship based on investment.
  • We have a 12-year track record dealing with such applications.
  • We have participated in government relations initiatives in this field since 2020 and have advised on implementing regulations.
  • To date, we have a 100% success rate in our citizenship by investment work.

Next steps

Please call us on +359 2 950 6239 or +44 20 7183 0262 for more information or contact us via our Contact Form, to request advice or to apply. 

We are available Monday to Friday between 08:00 and 16:00 UTC/GMT and by e-mail [email protected] within 24 hours at all times.

© New Balkans Law Office 2024

The Bulgarian and dual-qualified lawyers of New Balkans Law Office are regulated by the respective Bar of their registration. New Balkans Law Office is a brand name of Legal Services EOOD, a company registered under Bulgarian law. Reg’d No. 202331677. Further details are available here.

© New Balkans Law Office 2024