Here’s how to get Panama residency and second passport if you are a citizen of India. If you currently hold a passport from India, or any other country that doesn’t have a treaty with Panama, this post is for you. If are from India and want to get residency and citizenship in Panama, here’s how to do it.
The bottom line is, if you want to get a second passport or residency in Panama, and you hold a passport from India, you will need to work harder and invest more than someone from a “friendly” nation such as the United States. Whenever you want to upgrade your passport, the barriers will be higher.
If you have a passport from the US, UK, Canada, or any of the other 47 nations with residency agreements with Panama, you can get in for cheap. Most US citizens either buy residency for $8,750 or invest $20,000 in teak and get Panama residency for free.
If you are not on this list, then you need to invest more in teak or prove your net worth by making a large deposit into a bank in Panama. Also, the legal and other costs to get Panama residency and a second passport for an Indian citizen are higher than for an American. For a list of friendly nations, see Best Panama Residency by Investment Program.
A second passport from Panama is a very valuable upgrade for someone who holds a passport from India. Panama gets you visa free travel to 127 countries compared to 52 countries from India. Also, it’s easy to get a visa in to the United States with a second passport from Panama. I have many friends from Panama who spend 6 to 8 months a year in the US.
The most popular option with persons from India is the Panama Teak Reforestation Visa. Buy $80,000 worth of teak, receive title to at least 5 hectares of land, and get residency in Panama. This allows you to live, work, bank, and operate a business from Panama.
Then, after 5 years, you can apply for citizenship and a second passport. There is no requirement to spend time in Panama. You can live in Panama if you like, or you can just wait out the 5 years and then apply for citizenship. That is to say, unlike many residency programs, you don’t need to spend a minimum amount of time in Panama to keep your visa.
Once you have your citizenship, you can sell your teak parcel. In most cases, you’ll get your capital back and make a nice profit. I’ve never seen anyone lose money on an investment in teak in Panama.
The other option for Panama residency from India is the Person of Means Visa. In this case, you deposit at least $300,000 in a local bank (in a 2 year certificate of deposit). Your visa is issued for two years with the option of renewing your Panama residency and your certificate of deposit.
Like the investment in teak, you can apply for citizenship in Panama after 5 years. At that time, you will get your second passport and upgrade from your Indian passport.
I should note that this article is current through June 2016. There are many articles on the internet – including some from the Panama consulate – with out of date information. For example, the person of means deposit requirement was $200,000 and the teak reforestation visa $40,000 a few years back. They are now $300,000 and $80,000 respectively.
If you would like to apply for Panama residency from India, the most important part of the application is a clean police report and no criminal history.
You will need a clean report from your home country (India) and any country you have lived in or had residency in. Anyone 16 years of age and older must provide a police report.
The list below outlines the police certificates required based on where you live and have lived in the past..
- IF the you have been living in India (your country of nationality) at your current residence for more than 6 months AND are 16 years old or older
- THEN you need a police certificate from the police authorities of that city.
- IF you have been living in a different part of India (you country of nationality) for more than 6 months AND were 16 years or older at that time
- THEN the you need a police certificate from the police authorities of that locality.
- IF you have lived in a different country for more than 12 months AND were 16 years or older at that time
- THEN you need a police certificate from the police authorities of that country and India (your home country).
- IF you were arrested for any reason, regardless of how long you lived or were visiting the place the arrest occurred
- THEN the you need a police certificate from the authorities of that city or province.
Here is where to get your police clearance report from India for Panama residency:
If you reside in India and your Indian passport was issued within past six months, you can get your police clearance report from the passport office that issued your passport.
If you reside in India and your Indian passport was issued more than six months prior to visa application, you can get your police clearance report from the office that issued your passport or from your district police office.
To apply for a police clearance report from India for Panama residency, you will need to bring the following documents with you to the passport office or the district police office:
- A valid original passport;
- Proof of residence; and
- If you have not lived at your current address for the last one year, a set of 3 completed Personal Particulars Form.
I hope you have found this article on how to apply for Panama residency and a second passport from India to be helpful. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (619) 550-2743 for more information.