Top Investment Migration Program Options for HNWIs Seeking Health Security

Published on 23rd March 2021

In response to the unprecedented global demand among affluent investors for residence- and citizenship-by-investment programs as a means of overcoming the limitations and risks of being restricted to a single jurisdiction in the wake of Covid-19, Deep Knowledge Analytics and Henley & Partners have partnered to produce the Investment Migration Programs Health Risk Assessment ¾ a unique digital publication featuring systematic analysis, interactive tools, and exclusive insights into how efficiently the countries that offer these programs have performed during the global pandemic and the likelihood of them being oases for longevity in future.

This collaborative effort between Deep Knowledge Analytics, a subsidiary of Deep Knowledge Group that produces advanced analytics to deliver insightful market intelligence and pragmatic forecasting, and Henley & Partners, the global leader in residence and citizenship planning, draws on three sets of data: Deep Knowledge Analytics’ Covid-19 Regional Safety Assessment and Henley & Partners’ Global Residence Program Index (GRPI) and Global Citizenship Program Index (GCPI), which are published in Investment Migration Programs 2021.

Investment Migration countries – Tomorrow’s health havens

Considering over 4,000 data points and 140 different parameters, the Investment Migration Programs Health Risk Assessment analyzes and ranks the economic, social, and health stability achieved by 31 countries that host residence- and/or citizenship-by-investment programs as well as the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats or risks that they face in the battle against the global health and economic crisis triggered by Covid-19.

Dr. Juerg Steffen, CEO of Henley & Partners, says the report is an invaluable resource for those considering investment migration as a means of creating optimal value and mitigating risk in terms of where they and their families can live, work, study, and invest. “Understandably, the chaos and disruption that has been experienced worldwide over the past year has seen access to health security become a chief concern, and our high-net-worth clientele is no exception in this regard.”

Dmitry Kaminskiy, Co-founder and Managing Partner of Deep Knowledge Group, agrees and points out that as the ‘health as the new wealth’ paradigm gains prominence among the global investment community, along with the notion that health, rather than wealth, is the most valuable asset class, we will see the ascendance of regions that promote both individual and institutional migration and relocation on the basis of prioritizing well-being, rather than capital. “Within the next decade, we will witness the tax and wealth preservation havens of today transform into the longevity and HealthTech havens of tomorrow, with citizens, investors, and companies alike choosing to relocate to longevity-progressive regions.”

Canada, New Zealand, Australia – “Islands of immunity”

The results reveal Canada to be the top performing investment migration country in terms of health management and risk readiness, with New Zealand in 2nd position, and Australia narrowly behind in 3rd place. Four European countries are in the top 10, with Switzerland in 4th place, Austria in 5th place, Italy in 9th place, and the UK occupying the 10th spot.

There are also some interesting surprises in the upper echelons, with the UAE in 6th place, just behind Austria, and ahead of Singapore, which is in 7th place and Hong Kong, which is in 8th position. Turkey and Ireland are hot on the heels of the UK in joint-11th position. Despite being the world’s most powerful country and one that spends the highest percentage of its GDP on healthcare, the US is ranked just 16th out of the 31 investment migration countries.

More countries to ramp up health security to attract investors

Dr. Parag Khanna, Founder and Managing Partner of FutureMap, says many countries can learn from the Covid experience and improve their health security while also undertaking other reforms to attract the next wave of investor migrants. “The investment migration program options in the future may well grow rather than recede. Many countries have cleverly amended their visa policies on the fly during the pandemic, allowing tourists to become classified as nomads, nomads to convert into entrepreneurs, and entrepreneurs into residents.”

Kevin Bürchler, Head of Key Accounts at the Swiss Insurance Partners Medical Family Office, says it is evident that you can no longer rely on access to only one healthcare system ¾ no matter how well developed it might be. “Securing residence through investment migration programs in countries that rank highly when it comes to their government’s risk management and healthcare readiness is certainly a viable mechanism to improve your access to quality healthcare and therefore enhance your possible longevity.”

Attractive safe harbor options in most regions

North America saw contrasting results between frontrunner, Canada, and its larger neighbor, the US, which disappointed to say the least. Greg Lindsey, Director of Applied Research at NewCities says, “It’s no coincidence the first nation to pre-emptively close its border with the US a year ago tops this assessment. True to form, Canada’s quiet competency, deference to authority, and historical “garrison mentality” — as seen in five provinces walling themselves off from the rest of the country to great success — culminated in the best overall score.”

In the Caribbean, St. Lucia, Dominica, and St. Kitts and Nevis outshone their small-island neighbors, and according to Lindsey, “While the Caribbean nations on this list trail far behind the healthcare capabilities of much larger competitors, they hold their own from a governance standpoint. From a purely residence- and citizenship-by-investment perspective, St. Kitts and Nevis and St. Lucia offer the most post-pandemic value, both having leveraged their island status to mount effective quarantine measures while offering some of the world’s most affordable CBI programs.”

Asia Pacific offers some of the healthiest choices

Asia Pacific is a region rich in options for HNW investors pursuing more secure alternative locations, with New Zealand, Australia, and Singapore top in the region and among the best of all 31 destinations.

Former US Ambassador to the Asian Development Bank and managing director of advisory firm RiverPeak Group, LLC., Curtis S. Chin says, “It is little wonder that entrepreneurs and investors looking to diversify their domiciles have also looked to this most dynamic region of the world. In the short term, borders are largely likely to remain closed, and governments are moving forward with vaccination programs at a slow pace. But the long-term economic opportunity and quality of life of numerous Asia Pacific nations remain key draws.”

Europe retains its strength when it comes to health security

Europe continues to be one of the most sought-after regions when it comes to residence- and citizenship-by-investment programs, and Switzerland and Austria have emerged as the top two investment migration countries in Europe, in 3rd and 4th position overall, respectively. Also in the top 10 are Italy in 9th position, and the UK in 10th place.

Former Global Head of Partnerships for Estonia’s e-Residency program, Varun Sharma, who runs a consultancy advising next-gen technology companies, says, “As an investor, HNW or otherwise, diversification of risk and maximization of returns are key, and the onset of the pandemic has indeed highlighted a new dimension determining investor interests: health and wellness. Most European nations boast a strong universal healthcare system and a general inclination towards conserving nature, reducing emissions, eating well, and exercising to maintain wellness. Complemented by the fact that the world’s rich are both getting younger and living longer, this resonates with their focus on balanced living, health, spirituality, and mindfulness.”

More attractive Middle East options now available

The range of investment migration options in the Middle East is growing steadily. In 6th place overall, the UAE performed extremely well due having the highest emergency preparedness score of all 31 countries. Turkey is in 11th place and was bolstered by its impressive government efficiency score ¾ the second highest of all the citizenship-by-investment countries.

Regional tensions have been easing in the first few months of 2021, with governments moving towards cautious cooperation. Dr. Robert Mogielnicki, a Resident Scholar at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington, says, “Rather than engaging in direct and costly disputes, governments with available resources are jockeying for regional influence in the Covid era. In the UAE, governments at the federal and emirate levels have rolled out several long-term visa schemes and a legal pathway to citizenship in an effort to retain and attract the talented expatriates needed for robust economic growth.” 

Pathways to greater health security and longevity

Looking to the future, Kaminsky says, “We can expect to see a ‘new normal’ of small, technocratic nations that selectively promote both personal and institutional citizenship to individuals, companies, and investors committed to advancing longevity-related technologies in exchange for access to some of the world’s most sophisticated and progressive healthcare, life insurance, MedTech, HealthTech, Longevity FinTech, AgeTech, and WealthTech ecosystems.”

Dr. Steffen concludes, “Participating in a residence- and citizenship-by-investment programs can be seen as an investment in physical and financial longevity — one that can provide a safe passage to health security in an alternative location should the need arise. By investing in a suite of programs, investors and their families are also automatically endowed with an extended range of options for themselves and their families, including healthcare.”

By Henley & Partners (global leader in residence and citizenship planning) and Deep Knowledge Analytics (a DeepTech focused agency producing advanced analytics on DeepTech and frontier-technology industries)

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