RESIDENT VISAS

MACRO BUSINESS INVESTOR VISA

Overview:

  • This visa is designed for foreigners who invest directly in a Panamanian company, that is constituted with a minimum share capital of One Hundred Sixty Thousand Dollars US$160,000.
  • The investment must increase in Two Thousand Dollars (US$2,000.00) for each additional dependent.
  • According to the Immigration Department of Panama, there is no minimum age required to qualify.
  • The foreigner must be the shareholder and Director / Officer of the company, which in addition, must have an initial list of Five (5) Panamanian workers, working fulltime and earning a wage not inferior than the minimum established by Law for each region of the country, specifying the position or activity that each one performs.
  • The company must register its employees in the Social Security System, thus complying with the legal obligations in respect to the social issues. It is important that the foreign investor considers that at the time of requesting the visa extension, after exceeding the provisional permission that is issued with Immigrant's Visa, he/she will have to prove that it has fulfilled the commitment to contract Panamanian personnel and to be up-to-date in the payment of the obligations towards the Social Security System.

Procedures for Applying:

  1. This visa must be requested to immigration through a lawyer, so obtaining a reliable Panamanian lawyer is the first step.
  2. Establish a Panamanian Corporation with a minimum capital of US$160,000.00.
  3. Set up a Corporate Bank Account for this Corporation.
  4. Invest US$ US$160,000.00 by depositing this money into the corporate bank account or purchasing under the name of the corporation assets that represent the previous amount in total.
  5. Establish a Commercial License or Registry for the company.
  6. Hire Five (5) full time Panamanian employees and proceed to have their wages registered in the Social Security (Seguro Social).
  7. A short visit to Panama is required for your Passport Registration at the Immigration Office. You will also sign the Special Power of Attorney at your law firm to handle your immigration paperwork and to start the processing of the Macro Business Investor Visa.
  8. Your law firm submits your application for a two (2) year Temporary Immigrant Visa, under the Macro Business Investor Visa. You are issued a Temporary Immigrant Card, which is valid for Three (3) months. Those Three (3) months are used by the Immigration Department to process the 1 year Temporary Immigrant Visa. After Three (3) months, you will be issued a new Temporary Immigrant Card that is valid for two (2) years.
  9. One month before your two (2) year Temporary Immigrant Visa expires, your law firm will submit a new application for your Permanent Residency Visa. You are issued a Temporary Immigrant Card, which is valid for Three (3) months (those 3 months are used by the Immigration Department to process the one (1) year Temporary Immigrant Visa. After Three (3) months, you will be issued Permanent Residency Card.
  10. After five (5) years of having Permanent Residency status, you may apply for Panamanian Citizenship, and a Panamanian Passport. This is called becoming "Naturalized", and requires that you accept the laws of the Republic of Panama under oath. Panamanian passports are renewable every five (5) years.
  11. Note: The Panamanian government requires you to be in Panama at least once every two (2) years to maintain the Panamanian Immigrant Visa.

Required Documents:

Please note that all Canadian documents intended for use in Panama, must first be taken to a Canadian notary, then to Foreign Affairs Canada for authentication, and finally, to the Panamanian Consulate nearest you. Here in Canada we have offices in Ottawa, Montreal, Toronto, and shortly will be opening one in Vancouver.

  1. Signed special power of attorney by the applicant.
  2. Visa application form filled out and signed by the applicant.
  3. Signed Letter of Responsibility for dependents (if applicable)
  4. Photocopy of the entire valid passport of the applicant, including all the pages in the passport.
  5. Original Police record of the applicant, from the place of residence (and spouse and dependents over 18 years of age - if applicable). The document has to be presented to the immigration authorities, along with the application, within the six months of its expedition.
  6. Proof of Dependency in the following manner:
    1. For Spouse: Original Marriage Certificate
    2. For Children and Parents: Birth Certificate
  7. Six (6) passport sized photographs of the applicant (and dependents - if applicable).
  8. Certificate of Good Health, issued by a licensed Panamanian hospital or clinic, signed by a registered, licensed physician, indicating that the applicant (and dependents - if applicable) has no contagious diseases and is in good mental and physical condition.
  9. Certificate of Juridical Person issued by the Public Registry, that confirms the following:
    • The corporate name of the company
    • The directors and dignitaries of the company
    • The name of the legal or empowered representative (if it has one)
    • The issued capital stock of the company (that must be a minimum of US$160,000)
    • The type of shares and the distribution of the capital stock
    • The petitioner must be the director and dignitary of the company.
  10. Certification of the Secretary or Treasurer of the company, where it states the title of the shares issued in favor of the foreign applicant and that the shares are properly released and paid (the shares must be of a minimum value of US$ US$160,000.) The certification must be signed before a Public Notary and shouldn't be subscribed by the interested party.
  11. Certification of the corporation's Certified Public Accountant (CPA), stating the titles of the shares credited to the foreigner petitioner and indicating that those shares are properly released and paid (the shares must be of a minimum value of US$ US$160,000)
  12. Declaration rendered by the petitioner before a Public Notary, in which the amount of the invested capital is indicated, as well as the amount of the owned shares and that they are released and paid (The minimum value must be US$160,000. The detailed commercial activities performed by the company must also be mentioned)
  13. Authenticated Copy by the Caja del Seguro Social (Social Security) of the company's payroll, which specifies a minimum of Five (5) Panamanian employees, earning salaries no lower than the minimum wage established by law according to the region and position. (It must correspond to a payment made during the last months prior to the presentation of the application)
  14. Social Security's good standing in behalf of the company and with minimum of Five (5) months validity.
  15. Proof of investment that can be demonstrated by presenting at least three (3) of the following documents:
    1. Real State Buy/Sell Agreement of the place where the company operates or is located.
    2. Photocopy of bank's deposit slip authenticated by the bank, showing the invested amount on behalf of the company, or document issued by a bank certifying that the amount invested by the foreign petitioner comes from abroad.
    3. Commercial invoices of the expenses incurred by the investor in favor of the company, along with a detailed inventory certified by a C.P.A; Customs forms that show he paid taxes for imported assets in the name of the company or the investor. Any other document that can prove the capital invested on the company.
  16. Proof of location and existence of the company (supply a minimum of three (3) proofs:
    1. Rental agreement of the commercial location, where the office of the business operates, dully registered before the Ministry of Housing (in the case it is not an owned place).
    2. Electric Energy Service Agreement
    3. Phone Service Agreement
    4. Water supply agreement
    5. Security services agreement
    6. Garbage services agreement
    7. ITBM tax payment (added value tax) to the Ministry of Economic and Finances
    8. Internet services agreement.
  17. Copy of the Commercial License or industrial license of the business, (It must be type "A" that covers the wholesales commercial activities or industrial license)
  18. Photocopy of the Shares certificates.

Benefits of the Macro Business Investors Visa:

  • This visa allows you to become a Panamanian Citizen after being a permanent resident for 5 years.
  • As a Panamanian Citizen you will be able to vote, work, and obtain a Panamanian Passport.
  • If you decide to set your business in Panama Pacifico, a newly designed business park, you will benefit from all the tax, labor and legal benefits, of Law 41, in addition to the convenience of an onsite government office to fast-track the process of establishing a business in the area.
  • For additional information on starting your business in Panama Pacifico, visit:
  • www.panamapacifico.com
    www.aaeepp.gob.pa
    or contact:
    011 507 316-0003
    011 507 316-1663
    promotion@aaeepp.gop.pa

IMPORTANT LINKS: