HNIs GOING WEST
20th February, 2023 MISCELLANEOUS
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- According to the Union Ministry of External Affairs, more than 2.25 lakh Indians renounced their citizenship in 2022, the number is the highest since 2011.
- Recently, the Minister of state for external affairs informed the Lok Sabha that more than 16 lakh Indians have renounced their citizenship since 2011.
What does it suggest?
- The data suggest Indians, especially high networth individuals (HNIs), are moving to western countries in search of better opportunities, healthcare, quality of life, and education, among other factors.
High Networth Individuals (HNIs)
- HNIs are those who have wealth of over $1 million or ₹ 8.2 crore.
- According to the Henley Global Citizens Report, there were around 3.47 lakh HNIs in India in December 2021.
- Of these, 1.49 lakh HNIs were found in just 9 cities: Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Pune, Chennai, Gurugram, and Ahmedabad.
- According to the report, India ranked 4th in the world in terms of privately held wealth, after the U.S., China, and Japan.
Possible factors behind the trend
- Indian Industry representatives highlighted that several western countries have initiated “residence through investment” programmes to attract investment in their nation.
- The U.S. EB5 visa, Portugal Golden Visa, Australian Global Talent Independent Visa, Malta Permanent Residency Programme, and Greece Residence by Investment Programme.
- “Residence through investment” scheme benefits individuals and families, providing them with the right to live, work, study, or retire in western countries.
- A few years after the investment, the individual will be eligible for a passport from these countries, making them eligible to visit over 150 countries without a visa.
- The majority of Western Countries ranked high in the Henley Passport Index which ranks the strongest and weakest passports globally.
- Indian passport holders can access just 59 destinations worldwide.
- HNIs invest to give their children a better future in foreign countries.
- HNIs like business owners, entrepreneurs, and professionals such as doctors and engineers are also searching for better business opportunities outside India.
- Wealthy families aspire for better healthcare, open and flexible business environments, and access to better academic and professional opportunities.
- The “residence through investment” programmes in several developed nations provide them with these options.
Must Read: https://www.iasgyan.in/daily-current-affairs/citizenship-15