Today is a big day for the Greek Golden Visa. Following an amendment of the Golden Visa Law, enacted on the 23/12/2020, for the first time an investor can apply for a Golden Visa completely remotely, without having to visit Greece. At the same time, it is possible to receive by courier services the "blue certificate", which is equal to a temporary residence permit.
This application can be submitted by a local law firm, after the investor signs a Power of Attorney (PoA) at a local Greek Consulate. The same Power of Attorney can, of course, be used for the fully remote conclusion of the investment itself, namely the purchase of real estate with a minimum value of 250,000 EUR or the realization of an alternative investment option, such as a term deposit bank account with a minimum value of 400,000 EUR.
That is not new; what is new is the ability to use this Power of Attorney for the Golden Visa Application itself, without a prior entry into Greece.
Under the previous regime, it was still possible to apply by proxy, however, at least one prior entry to Greece was required for all applicants. Namely, not only did the investor have to visit Greece at least once, but so did all their family members, including minors. Without a previous trip, it was not possible to apply for a Golden Visa remotely, so applications were delayed until such a trip could be arranged, despite the fact the investment was already concluded.
The Greek Government heeded these concerns and took action to fix the problem. Under the new provisions, it is finally possible to remotely conclude each and every step required for the issuance of a Golden Visa, up to and including the collection of the permit itself, with the sole exception of the biometrics. This means that an investor and all their family members will only ever need to travel to Greece once, just to submit their biometrics in person.
This is a major step forward, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic which has made international travel much more difficult.
This new option offers the opportunity of a Golden Visa in Greece to a much wider circle of investors around the world; investors who have never visited Greece before, but who appreciate the potential of this program and wish to invest in the country.