Grenada’s CBI Passport Targets Sophisticated Investors

Jose Latour explains why Grenada’s passport program is built for top-tier, educated international investors looking for multifaceted future options for their families.

“While other passport investment programs rely on volume sales through mass marketing via migration agents, the Grenada CBI Program was designed from the beginning for forward-looking entrepreneurs seeking expert legal advice from top-ranked international law firms”

-José E. Latour, founder of LatourLaw

In the first quarter of 2018, 77 foreigners invested in Grenada’s Citizenship By Investment (CBI) Program, the best one on the market.  But thanks to bad advice from migration agents, 49 of them made a bad financial decision in choosing the FORM of their CBI investment!

Some CBI Passport programs offer EU rights for people who have no intention of living in the European Union.  Other CBI Passport programs offer you the option of joining a diverse community of international criminals, terrorists, and drug dealers…at a discount!  Let’s face it, folks: a Vietnamese investor who sincerely believes that a passport from an unstable, impoverished nation or one from an EU country with massive unemployment and an economy in free-fall will “open the door to a brighter future” isn’t thinking very clearly.  The fact is this: unless a Vietnamese investor has their sights on living in Europe, pretty much ALL CBI programs are an absolute waste of money since they will NEVER create immigration opportunities which don’t already exist for Vietnamese nationals!

Believe me, this is a subject I know VERY well: as a U.S. Vice Consul decades ago, I denied many a visa to holders of third country passports who STILL didn’t qualify for a U.S. visa, no matter how many passports they’d purchased.  And for the past 28 years, as an investment immigration attorney, I’ve read everything there is to read about supposed “Golden Passports”, etc. Each and every one of them was a dead end for my clients’ intended objectives and in 27 years of private law practice I had never counseled a client to secure a third country passport.

And then one day last May, totally out of the blue, came an unexpected recommendation from my long-time Hong Kong sidekick, co-counsel and fellow immigration warrior, Eugene Chow[1].  Over lunch at the Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong came something I thought I’d never hear from the mouth of Mr. Chow:

“José, you HAVE to check out the Grenada CBI program and meet the developer of the Kimpton Kawana Bay!”

I nearly choked on my bread!  In all the years I’ve known him, not ONCE has Eugene ever had anything good to say about any Citizenship by Investment program!

That’s primarily because Eugene’s client base represents the crème de la crème of China and Hong Kong: captains of industry, billionaires, and people way too rich to ever consider for one SECOND the option moving to the U.S. and facing worldwide taxation.  With his sophisticated client base and the incredibly complex tax and estate planning they require before making any move on migration, Eugene’s critical eye has protected many a family from the false promises of charlatan agents targeting high net worth Chinese and Vietnamese families.

I asked him what on EARTH he was talking about and he replied that he had started working with a Grenada developer whom he really liked and had concluded that the Grenada CBI program offered the most options for any family facing a long EB-5 wait.  He said that it was working well for his Chinese clients, that he thought it would work just as well for my Vietnamese clients, and he introduced me to the developer.  A week later I had lunch with the developer in Miami, a week after that I was in Grenada, two months after that Monica and I were in Grenada…and today LatourLaw is Vietnam’s unabashed champion of Grenada CBI and the Kimpton Kawana Bay. 

Like Eugene, I want the best for my clients.  Other programs generate good commissions for the seller but bad results for the investor, and that just doesn’t fly with us.  But Grenada CBI is not the cheapest and it is not for everyone…it is for immigrant investors who do their homework and are serious about crafting the most flexible future options for their family. 

There are two ways to get a Grenada passport:


 ONE- The National Transformation Fund (NTF) is a Government fund responsible for financing projects that will benefit Grenada’s economy and help its diversification. Applicants are required to make a non-refundable donation to the NTF of US$200,000 and 


2-    TWO- Investment in a Grenada government-approved Real Estate Project.  An applicant must purchase real estate for a minimum value of US$350,000. The real estate may not be disposed of for 3 years after the grant of citizenship.

Now, looking at these two options, the immediate reaction is: “Go with the $200,000 NTF option, it’s cheaper.”  Not so fast…it’s not that simple!  Here’s why:

                            I.           You’ll never see a penny of that $200,000 again; on the other hand, in three years you’ll be able to sell your real estate investment and STILL keep the family’s Grenada passports. 

                          II.           Under Grenada’s new law, when it’s time to sell your property in three years, your buyer will ALSO be entitled to the CBI Passport option for THEIR entire family when they purchase your property! 

                        III.           “Nexus” for the E-2 option: under U.S. visa law, writing a $200,000 check and getting a passport doesn’t really establish a clear link between you and Grenada.  But investing in real estate DOES.

Let’s look at the first quarter of Grenada’s 2018 CBI statistics to understand how this reality plays out:

                                  Jan. 2018                                   Feb. 2018                                   March 2018             1st Quarter Total

Applications received
















While a total of 77 foreign investors applied for Grenada’s CBI program, most of them – 49 – opted for the $200,000 so-called “donation” option[2].  To see how this plays out, let’s see how a typical migration agent Grenada CBI investor fairs compared to a LatourLaw CBI Investor:

Migration Agent Grenada CBI Investor                     LatourLaw Grenada CBI Investor

-Invests non-refundable $200,000 donation               -Invests $350,000 in Kawana Bay

-Family passports permanently renewable                   – Family passports permanently renewable

No recovery of any investment                                       -in 3 years, recovers $350,000

No “nexus”, no U.S. E-2 Visa option                                -Can plan E-2 business in U.S. today or                                                                                                                         someday and move family to US

                                                                                                     -Option to later convert E-2 visa to Direct EB-5

                                                                                                       U.S. permanent residency for the family.


So remember this, dear readers: choosing the RIGHT CBI/Passport option is important, but having your family’s future immigration handled by experts in global migration is equally important.


[1] Eugene Chow is my dear friend of many years and one of the world’s most respected immigration attorneys.  Eugene has forgotten more about EB-5 than most U.S. “expert” attorneys will ever know and is perhaps the only person more jaded than me about passport programs.

[2] Note that I am not criticizing the NTF donation option, which does great things for Grenada; I’m just saying that the real estate option makes far more financial sense from an investment point of view.