Russia Simplifies 2023 Residence Permit Applications For Foreign Investors

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Foreign investors in Russia now have access to a simplified procedure for obtaining a residence permit in Russia starting from January 11, with the relevant government decree now in force.

Russia’s Economic Development Ministry has stated “On January 11, a resolution came into force to approve the criteria that must be met by a foreign citizen who has made investments in Russia to issue a residence permit in Russia without obtaining a temporary residence permit”.

According to the government decree, foreigners can obtain such preferences by investing at least Rubles 15 million (US$220,000) in socially critical regional projects or investing Rubles 30 million (US$440,000) in a Russian company within three years before applying for a residence permit. It is envisaged that the company should operate for at least three years and have paid taxes and fees of Rubles 6 million (US$87,000) in the year preceding application for a residence permit.

“Another option is registration and subsequent possession of a legal entity, which has been operating in Russia for two years and annually pays from Rubles 4 million (US$59,000) in taxes” according to Deputy Economic Development Minister Dmitry Volvach.

“Foreign investors can also acquire Russian real estate of any purpose at the stage of construction or within two years after its commissioning, and also apply for a residence permit. Amounts vary depending upon the region;  from Rubles 50 million (US$750,000) in Moscow, from Rubles 20 million (US$300,000) in the Russian Far East. Real estate in this case should be free from encumbrances and must be owned without interruption for a year before an application is filed” Volvach also said.

The deputy minister also noted that grounds for refusal of a residence permit may not only be a failure to meet the approved criteria, but also general rules laid down in the law on the legal status of foreign nationals in Russia.

Interest in the simplified procedure for obtaining a residence permit in Russia is expected primarily from citizens of the EAEU, CIS countries, the Middle East and Asia. At the moment, simplified issue of residence permits is available, for example, for IT-specialists, as well as for citizens of Kazakhstan and Moldova.

The Ministry of Economic Development is estimating that investments into Russia under the simplified residence permit system in 2023 will total Rubles 12 billion (US$1.8 billion) and up to Rubles 40 billion each year thereafter.

The requirements for foreign investors seeking residence permits in Russia were approved as part of the implementation of the federal law adopted on July 14, 2022, which allows free entry into Russia and doing business in any region without obtaining a temporary residence permit.

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