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El Salvador Offers '5000 Free Passports' to Attract Global Talent

El Salvador Offers '5000 Free Passports' to Attract Global Talent

Apr 8, 2024

El Salvador Offers '5000 Free Passports' to Attract Global Talent

In a recent announcement, President Nayib Bukele of El Salvador has unveiled a plan to issue 5,000 free passports to accomplished professionals from around the globe, a move expected to significantly impact the nation's future.

Through a post on social media on Saturday, President Bukele revealed that the country will be granting citizenship to highly skilled individuals, including scientists, engineers, doctors, artists, and philosophers. The selected professionals will become part of less than 0.1% of the country's population, a number Bukele notes is negligible enough that "granting them full citizen status, including voting rights, poses no issue."

According to Bukele, the passports, which are part of El Salvador's passport program valued at $5 billion, are a strategic effort to bolster the country's talent pool. The president highlighted the incentives for the new citizens: "0% taxes and tariffs on moving families and assets, including commercial value items like equipment, software, and intellectual property."

El Salvador's passport, ranking 38th on the Henley Passport Index, allows visa-free access to 136 destinations, including many Western European and South American countries. The initiative to distribute free passports aims to attract foreign investment and expertise, dovetailing with El Salvador's recent legislative changes that expedite citizenship for foreigners who donate Bitcoin to the nation's social and economic projects.

The country's pioneering step of adopting Bitcoin as legal tender, a world first, is another example of its push to become a hub for innovation and talent.

As the world takes note of El Salvador's creative approach to enriching its workforce with global expertise, the long-term effects of such a program remain to be seen. The government's commitment to providing a tax and tariff-free environment for the transfer of assets is likely to be a key factor in the program's success.

While the impact of this influx of skilled professionals on El Salvador's society and economy is anticipated to be significant, the program is still in its infancy. The world will be watching as El Salvador tests this novel method of invigorating its workforce and driving economic development.

President Bukele's strategy underscores his government's dedication to embracing Bitcoin and innovative immigration policies to foster growth. Whether other nations will follow suit in adopting similar programs to attract global talent is yet to be determined, but El Salvador has certainly positioned itself at the forefront of this emerging trend.

Benzinga Article

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