No Namibian citizenship for Walvis Bay investors

Steve Nashama

The Ministry of Home Affairs, Immigration, Safety and Security yesterday denied that it has introduced a policy that grants Namibian citizenship and permits to foreign nationals who purchase residential property in the “Presidents Links Estate” in Walvis Bay.

The total investment value of the golf estate is set to be more than N$4 billion in which the project is expected to create over 2,500 temporary jobs and 1,300 permanent jobs. It will build over 700 low cost houses for Namibians, in addition to the homes constructed on the estate.

In a statement, the Ministry’s Executive Director Etienne Maritz said that the Ministry does not favour any company, nor does it endorse particular projects. He says however, the Ministry welcomes investment into Namibia and will issue qualifying foreign investors with relevant permits in line with the country’s national laws and procedures set out in the relevant regulations.

The Ministry’s Spokesperson, Margaret Kalo, said foreign nationals wishing to obtain citizenship or residence status in Namibia are advised to do so in terms of the Namibian Citizenship Act of 1990 and the Immigration Control Act of 1993, respectively.

She further indicated that Namibian citizenship and permits are acquired in accordance with the eligibility criteria set out in the Namibian Constitution and relevant legislation.

Namibia Investment Promotion Board (NIPDB), yesterday however said that for Namibia, the potential of using similar programmes to drive economic growth is considered in the Harambee Prosperity Plan) II.

“Some of the activities under the Economic Competitiveness pillar is to design and offer competitive investment incentives to facilitate local and foreign direct investment attraction and retention,” NIPDB Spokesperson Catherine Shipushu said.

Kalo emphasized that the Ministry, together with the NIPDB is in the process of finalizing a Golden Visa program in accordance with the activity stipulated in the Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP) II.

Shipushu stressed that the Harambee Prosperity Plan II commands that the NIPDB in conjunction with the Ministry of Home Affairs formulates a targeted Golden VISA programme looking to incentivize and attract investors with skills, discretionary capital and ambitions to set up businesses and residency in Namibia.

Kalo added that once the final version of the program has been submitted to the Ministry, it will be reviewed for compliance with laws, regulations, Namibian citizenship and processes before submission to Cabinet for approval. “The Ministry, therefore, advises foreign investors intending to invest in Namibia to obtain relevant information before getting involved in misleading information,” she said.

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