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Exclusively For NazranRoth

By Jonathan Cardona, CEO Malta Individual Investor Programme  Agency (MIIPA)

Professionals within the citizenship  by investment industry know  too well that they carry a lot of  responsibility on their shoulders.  Agents have to make sure that they  do their own due diligence on the  applicants to guarantee that they  only put forward reputable individuals,  whilst countries have to put  monetary interests aside and seek  the best interests of their own jurisdiction  and partner countries.  A stringent due diligence framework  is essential to impede security  risks. Citizenship by Investment  Units need to have all the safeguards  in place in order to detect  any possible abuse of investment  migration programmes for money  laundering or criminal activity. The  application processing time and  documentation required for each  application are usually very good  indicators of the rigorousness of the  due diligence process for a particular  investment migration programme.  Malta conducts what has been  termed as the ‘gold-standard’ of due  diligence processes in the industry;  a multi-tiered evidence-based risk  matrix that goes into a serious level  of detail. The current iteration of  the Individual Investor Programme  (IIP) risk matrix consists of multiple  levels of risk, across seven categories.  Through this risk matrix, the  IIP has been able to undertake a  more structured risk assessment,  which facilitates a more  objective and systematic  review of applications.  This ultimately resulted  in case officers being  able to conduct a more  thorough risk assessment  that facilitates new  levels of standardisation,  transparency and integrity,  which will ultimately  result in increased levels  of trust in the industry.  This level of in-depth  analysis is only possible  because Malta has access  to the required resources  and support to  be able to conduct such  stringent due diligence,  including, the required  monetary budget, the  human resource, the  network of service providers, the  techniques and the insight gained  through four years of intense scrutiny  from a number of bodies, including  international media. Like all  other operators, the Malta Individual  Investor Programme Agency (MIIPA)  needs to make sure that only reputable  individuals are granted citizenship  rights to Malta and the EU for  the sake of the other citizens. Malta  is not  after big  numbers,  but after  quality  applicants.  In fact  approximately  22% of the  applications  are  rejected,  showing  that it  takes due  diligence  very seriously.  It  will continue  to lead  and be a  proponent  of best practice and governance in  the field.  Malta’s aim has always been to  carefully select, through the right  checks and balances and a rigorous  due diligence process, the right  global citizens that will see Malta  as their natural home and the place  from where they choose to shape  the world of tomorrow.

Jonathan Cardona is the  Chief Executive Officer of the  Malta Individual Investor Programme  Agency (MIIPA). The  Individual Investor Programme  is designed to attract global  high net worth individuals to  obtain Maltese Citizenship and  who can share their talent, expertise  and business connections.  The IIP is highly regarded  and considered to have the  best due diligence procedures  and in turn has become the  most exclusive and sought-after  programme in the world.  Jonathan is also an advisor on  EU Affairs to the Prime Minister  of Malta 

ultimately result in increased

levels of trust in the industry

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