Updated: Sep 22, 2021
According to the newest edition of the Citizenship by Investment (CBI) Index, the Federation of St Kitts and Nevis holds the highest score in due diligence.
The report is conducted by an independent researcher and published by the Professional Wealth Management magazine, published under the Financial Times. It notes that the dual-island nation has held the top position in performing background checks on applicants since the report's inception.
"A multi-layered due diligence system is an essential element of any successful CBI programme, as it combines internal government checks with research by specialist third-party due diligence firms, and assessments by regional and international bodies," reads the report. For St Kitts and Nevis, "since the CBI Index's introduction in 2017, this has been a consistent outcome."
The country also holds the Platinum Standard in the investment immigration industry for its CBI Programme. Les Khan, the CEO of St Kitts and Nevis' CBI Unit, said that the Programme had been acknowledged as one of the best in the world based on several factors, but the most important is applicant due diligence.
Khan also defined four layers of due diligence checks performed on individuals applying for second citizenship in St Kitts and Nevis. The first is done by authorised agents worldwide who do anti-money laundering and anti-terrorism financing checks before accepting a candidate.
The second level is performed by service providers, local licensed lawyers and accountants registered with and overseen by St Kitts and Nevis' CBI Unit. These experts confirm the applicant's profiles submitted to the Unit.
During the third stage, the Unit sends the documents to an international due diligence provider that does open-source media searches and sends the information to agents on the ground where the applicant is located.
Fourthly, these providers validate birth, marriage, education certificates, and employment information. This data is then provided back to the Unit and later submitted to international law enforcement that consolidates all the information and search databases for anti-money laundering, fraud, criminal activity, terrorism financing, and terrorism activity.
Several more layers of vetting are also done within the Unit when the files are returned. "The rigour put around due diligence is to ensure that individuals of only the highest integrity are successful," he added.
A prospective applicant can rest assured that their investment in the citizenship programme is safe due to the entire due diligence—those who have been successfully vetted life-long gain citizenship and the right to travel to nearly 160 destinations.
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