Obtaining citizenship by investment in the Netherlands is possible for foreign entrepreneurs who are prepared to invest in a Dutch business or in a fund. It can be a suitable option for entrepreneurs who were already in the position to start a business or make a substantial investment and are looking towards the options and advantages offered by the Netherlands, a country that has a favorable location in Europe.
Apart from the specific investment conditions for this type of residency permit, the applicant also needs to meet the general conditions that apply to those who wish to stay in the country for long periods. Our team of immigration lawyers in Netherlands can assist you if you are planning to obtain Dutch residency and then citizenship through an initial investment made in 2023.
Understanding the general and the specific requirements are important as the conditions are differentiated based on the nationality of the applicant. One of the most important issues is that certain foreign nationals will need to apply for a provisional residence permit in Netherlands or the MVV. Our immigration lawyer can help you apply for this permit and can help you obtain Dutch citizenship through investment.
|Nationalities accepted (EU/Non-EU)
Business investment option (YES/NO)
Real estate investment option (YES/NO)
|Other investment options
|Living requirement in the Netherlands (YES/NO)
|Residence or direct citizenship option
Residence. Citizenship is obtained through naturalisation
|Direct immigration with family members (YES/NO)
Yes, under certain conditions
|Family members allowed to join the program
|Family members can join the applicant based on obtaining their own residence permits
|Residence visa/citizenship processing time (approx.)
|90 days for residence, longer for citizenship
|Additional financial requirements for family members (YES/NO)
|Timeframe for obtaining citizenship/residency by investment
|5 years of continuous residence
|Dual citizenship permitted (YES/NO)
|Reasons to choose the Netherlands
| Accessible and connected to the rest of Europe
High English proficiency
High quality of life
|Personal income tax rate
|37.07% for income up to EUR 69,398
49.5% for income exceeding EUR 69,398
|Visa free travel to other countries (approx. number of countries)
|Minimum duration for the naturalisation procedure
|Less than 1 year, in most cases.
Maximum duration for the naturalisation procedure
Minimum investment amount for the residence permit for investors
|What entrepreneurs can invest in
|A Dutch company or a fund that fits into a special scheme, a venture capital company.
|Investment deposit conditions
The deposit is made in a bank account of a Dutch bank or an EU State bank with a branch in the Netherlands.
|Special conditions for the investment
The said investment needs to have added value to the Dutch economy.
|Legitimacy of the capital investment
The amount cannot be acquired illegitimately. The applicant can be asked to provide information on the origin of the funds.
|Personnel criteria related to the investment
It must create at least 10 jobs in 5 years.
|Innovative investment conditions
The investment must have a contribution to innovation, through a patent, investments, in technological and non-tech innovations, or in companies that activate in a top sector.
|Other criteria for the approval of the investment
|Non-financial value is also considered, such as the involvement of the investor or his specific knowledge.
|Other ways to acquire citizenship
At birth, through adoption, or through the acknowledgement of parentage, through the option procedure (subject only to a limited number of applicants).
|Your rights as a Dutch citizen
Enter the country freely, vote, join the armed forces, and obtain a Dutch passport.
|Important information about the residence permit for foreign investors
This option is only valid for foreign investors looking to apply in 2023. This type of permit will no longer be available starting with January 1, 2024.
|Why work with us
Our local team assists foreign investors looking to understand their options for residency in the Netherlands in 2023 or 2024. We will guide you according to the latest changes.
|When to contact us
|As soon as you decide to relocate to the Netherlands for business or investment purposes.
Investing in the Netherlands
Investors who wish to invest and live in the Netherlands need to obtain a proper residency permit. Only after living under this permit for a minimum number of years can they apply for Netherlands citizenship. The conditions for this type of permit differ from those required to obtain an employment residency permit for example and they refer to the applicant’s ability to submit an investment that is both substantial and relevant.
The conditions that apply for obtaining a residence permit by investment and ultimately citizenship by investment in the Netherlands in 2023 are the following:
- minimum investment amount: the investment in a Dutch company or fund needs to be of at least 1,250,000 euros and there is no possibility of investing in real estate for private purposes.
- valuable investment: the business or fund investment needs to be relevant to the Dutch economy; for this purpose, it will be evaluated by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency based on a points system.
- the capital: the invested capital needs to be deposited into a bank account of a Dutch bank or a foreign bank branch located in the Netherlands; moreover, it needs to have been produced via legitimate means.
- applicant’s situation: the applicant needs to comply with the requirements for not having previously been in the country illegally and/or not having offered incorrect information in a previous residence permit application.
If you are interested in obtaining Netherlands citizenship, our team is at your disposal.
The points system on which the Agency bases its evaluation will take into consideration issues like:
- the creation of new jobs, at least 10 jobs in the 5 years following the investment.
- the innovative ideas of the company such as patents or investments in technological and non-technological ideas and innovations.
- the non-financial added value of the company.
As a foreign investor, you will be able to apply for citizenship in Netherlands through naturalization. This is a process that requires the applicant to comply with several key conditions, among which having sufficient Dutch language knowledge. If you are a foreign investor who qualifies for citizenship by naturalization, our team can help you during the application process.
For US investors, a suitable visa is the DAFT visa, awarded under the Dutch American Friendship Treaty, which is a bilateral agreement signed by the two countries. It allows the US holder of the visa to remain in the Netherlands for two years for the purpose of starting a business. You can discuss more about the applicable conditions and the application process with our team.
We invite you to read more on how to obtain Dutch citizenship in the infographic below:
Conditions for residency by investment in the Netherlands
Netherlands citizenship is obtained by naturalization for most of the applicants who have initially entered the country through substantial investment. In order to apply for citizenship after having made an investment, the applicant needs to have lived for a period of at least five uninterrupted years in the country with a valid residence permit in Netherlands.
Apart from the conditions related strictly to the value of the investment, the applicant also needs to comply with a set of general conditions for entering the country. These include:
– having a valid passport;
– signing an antecedents certificate;
– undergoing a tuberculosis test (only for some applicants);
The application for the residency by investment permit will imply a cost of approximately 2,100 euros to which the costs for translating and legalizing the documents will be added (handled by the applicant himself, will include the official foreign document translation into Dutch). The Immigration and Naturalization Department where the application is submitted issues the decision in approximately 90 days. After the application is approved, the applicant can collect the MVV (when applicable) and can then travel to the Netherlands.
The general post-arrival steps will include the registration with the municipality as well as obtaining health insurance (a mandatory procedure that can be accomplished within four months after arriving in the country).
One of our immigration specialists can give you more information about the conditions for acquiring citizenship by investment in the Netherlands. We also invite you to watch the following video:
Foreign startups residence permit
Another route to obtain Netherlands citizenship is through investment for a foreign startup, under which the applicant can also receive a residence permit which, when renewed accordingly, can allow the applicant to apply for citizenship in time.
Different conditions can apply to those entrepreneurs who wish to open a startup in the Netherlands. In this case, after the proposed startup business passes the requirements, the applicant will have a one-year residency permit after which he can renew it with a self-employed residency permit.
Finding a facilitator is a key step for the startup option and this means that the applicant will be asked to choose a facilitator from the list of approved ones. The conditions for such as recognized legal entity are the following:
- must have experience in guiding startups (innovative ones);
- must have financial stability, no negative equity and must under no circumstances be bankrupt;
- he cannot be a family member up to the third degree for the applying individual, even if they have obtained Netherlands citizenship;
- the facilitator cannot have a majority interest in the startup company.
A number of companies are already recognized facilitators and interested entrepreneurs can reach out to our lawyers for a complete list of these businesses. The key role of the facilitator is to provide the startup founder with support according to his specific needs. For example, he can assist with marketing services or operational management just as well as with other types of services. Companies that fulfill this role help startups scale up by pooling needed resources and/or bringing together communities that share complementary goals. They can assist several startups and they support determined entrepreneurs who are willing to bring their innovative business to the Netherlands.
After finding a proper facilitator, the individual who applies for the startup residence permit and who may ultimately be interested in obtaining Netherlands citizenship will need to qualify for the permit according to the level of innovation presented by the proposed startup. Apart from the criteria to work with a facilitator, the others are:
- the proposed service or product is innovative;
- the entrepreneur has a step-by-step plan to develop the business;
- the entrepreneur and his facilitator are registered with the Trade Register;
- the entrepreneur must prove that he has sufficient financial means to reside in the Netherlands for one year (separate from the financial requirements for the startup, the funds provided for this purpose must meet the individual needs for living in the country for one year).
Our team of experts in the Netherlands can give you detailed information on the qualification criteria for startups. The goal of the program that awards residence permits for foreign startups is to provide that startup with the support it needs to develop into a mature company.
Residing in the country after the first year under the startup residence permit scheme is subject to being able to apply for the self-employed scheme. Essentially, this means that the applicant will need to meet the criteria for two different schemes, one year apart. By doing this, he will ensure that he has spent enough time in the country (the required five years) in order to be able to apply for Netherlands citizenship.
The criteria for the self-employed scheme are largely the same as those for the start-up residence permit, in the sense that the most important ones are related to working with a facilitator, having an innovative product, having a step-by-step plan for the business, being registered with the Trade Register and having sufficient means to continue to reside in the Netherlands (for this purpose there is no time limit, the applicant will need to show that he has the means to reside and live in the country as needed). The entrepreneur is not permitted to rely on welfare benefits or other public funds benefits that may apply in the Netherlands. A bank statement may be provided as proof to show that the applicant has sufficient funds.
Further clarifications on the role of the start-up entrepreneur may be useful for those who wish to apply for this type of permit. A condition is for the entrepreneur to play an active role in the company – he cannot simply be an uninvolved shareholder. Moreover, the step-by-step plan that is required both for the start-up residence permit and the self-employed permit for entrepreneurs needs to contain information on the structure of the company, the roles, and tasks of the members, the personnel, and the purpose of the company. Information on the chosen legal form will also be provided.
If the applicant qualifies for the investor or the startup-residence permit, and after that for the self-employed residence permit, this can be a suitable route to apply for Netherlands citizenship at the end of the minimum period lived in the country.
If you need other services in the Netherlands, such as debt recovery, we can put you in touch with our our experienced debt collection lawyer.
Dual Citizenship in the Netherlands
The dual citizenship in the Netherlands is not permitted and it is good to know that persons who own foreign citizenship and live abroad for more than ten years can lose the Dutch right of abode. The Netherlands does not accept the dual nationality, which is why overseas residents are obliged to give up their original citizenship if they chose to live in the country and to adopt a Dutch nationality. Exceptions are permitted under certain circumstances. Our specialists in immigration in the Netherlands are able to offer you details and important information about dual citizenship and the conditions implied. If you want to immigrate to the Netherlands you can rely on our representatives.
Who is eligible for dual citizenship in the Netherlands?
According to the Dutch immigration rules and regulations, any individual who applies for Dutch citizenship needs to give up the original one. But there are certain cases where the dual citizenship in the Netherlands is permitted and here we mention the most important ones:
• individuals who are married to a citizen in the Netherlands;
• refugees may keep the original citizenship;
• people with financial problems in the home country;
• individuals who might lose inheritance rights.
Citizens who do not enter in the categories mentioned above need to abandon the original citizenship, in order to receive Dutch citizenship. There are individuals who do not want to acquire Netherlands citizenship by giving up the original one. In this case, they will need to apply for permanent residence which grants the indefinite stay in the Netherlands, but with the condition to renew the permit once in five years.
Our immigration lawyer in the Netherlands can help you with the entire procedure related to the citizenship you wish to obtain. Any individual interested in immigration in the Netherlands may solicit help and guidance from our representatives.
The rights that come with the Dutch citizenship
Citizens have the right to vote, to enter the Netherlands without any restrictions, to join the army and to receive the Dutch passport. Besides that, the children will automatically receive the same citizenship, the family being capable to freely travel in the EU (European Union) countries. Individuals with citizenship can receive free medical aid and their children can attend normal schools where education is granted and there are no costs.
The naturalization procedure for obtaining Dutch citizenship
The naturalization procedure is available for all individuals who have been living, working or studying in the Netherlands for a certain period of time, as well as for those entrepreneurs who have been living in the country and managing their Dutch-based company. The following requirements apply for those who want to obtain Dutch citizenship through the naturalization procedure in 2023:
- be aged 18 or over and having lived legally in the Netherlands or one of its constituent countries uninterruptedly for 5 years;
- have a valid permanent residence permit (that will still be valid for the duration of the procedure);
- being able to read, speak and understand Dutch and having passed the Civic Integration Examination;
- no criminal sentences or large fines received in the past four years;
- the desire to renounce the previous nationality;
- attend the citizenship ceremony.
An exception applies if the applicant has married a Dutch citizen and have lived together uninterruptedly for a period of three years. This can also apply if the applicant is unmarried to his/her Dutch partner but have been living together uninterruptedly for the last three years.
The most important documents needed to submit the application for the option procedure include a valid residence permit and ID as well as a birth certificate. An immigration lawyer in the Netherlands can give you more information about the application procedure and the costs needed for the naturalization procedure.
According to Statistics Netherlands, in 2022 the number of immigrants was 401,351. This is larger than the number of persons who immigrated to the country in 2021, an increase of 148,823 individuals. The migration vs. emigration balance remains in favor of migrants, with more people having migrated to the Netherlands than emigrated, overall, in 2022.
According to data, the net migration value (calculated as immigration minus emigration) was 227,882 individuals. International migration continued to surpass natural growth (births minus deaths) in 2022. This is a continuing trend that started in 2014 (a year until the population increased mainly through natural growth).
The Naturalisation Ceremony in the Netherlands
A naturalization ceremony is a festive event held for the people who have obtained citizenship in the Netherlands. It is celebrated every year on December 15th and newcomers receive a special declaration stating that they have become Dutch citizens. Attending the naturalization ceremony in the Netherlands is the final step in acquiring Dutch nationality. Our immigration lawyer in the Netherlands is able to offer you details about the naturalization ceremony.
This festive event is organized by the municipality where you reside and attending the ceremony is compulsory for every individual who wants to become a Dutch citizen. If your child was 16 years or older at the time you submitted the naturalization application, then he/she also has to attend the ceremony. During the naturalization ceremony in the Netherlands you take a declaration of solidarity and accept that the laws of the Dutch Kingdom also apply to you. You cannot obtain Dutch citizenship unless you make the declaration of solidarity. An invitation to the next ceremony will be handed to you if you cannot attend the first one. If you fail to participate at a naturalization ceremony within 1 year following the decision, you have to submit another naturalization application.
Don`t hesitate to contact our experts in immigration in the Netherlands who can tell you how to prepare for the naturalization ceremony in 2023.
Contact our Dutch immigration lawyers for more details on investing in this country, obtaining residence permits, and acquiring Netherlands citizenship by investment or obtaining Dutch citizenship through other ways.