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UAE Extends 10-year Golden Visa System

By GC NewsDesk   Washington: The United Arab Emirates (UAE) authorities on Sunday announced the decision to expand its Golden Visa system that grants 10-year residency for certain categories of professionals, including doctorate degree holders, doctors, computer programmers, and biotechnology engineers.   UAE Vice President and Dubai Emir Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum made this announcement, stating that specialists in the field of artificial intelligence, big data, and epidemiology, as well as best-performing students from certain high schools and universities, will also be eligible for “golden” visas.     As per a report by Sputnik, the UAE government allowed for the...
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Rich Americans Increasingly Are Looking for Second Passports

By Devon Pendleton and Ben Stupples   Eric Schmidt acquired all the typical trappings of a mega-rich U.S. citizen: a superyacht, a Gulfstream jet, a Manhattan penthouse.   One of his newest assets is far less conventional: a second passport.   Alphabet Inc.’s former chief executive officer applied to become a citizen of Cyprus, according to an announcement last month in a Cypriot newspaper that was first reported by the website Recode. Schmidt, 65, joins a growing club of individuals participating in government programs enabling foreigners to acquire passports.   In previous years, U.S. citizens rarely sought to buy so-called golden passports. The...
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'Golden Passports': Malta Takes 67 Days to Respond to EU

By NIKOLAJ NIELSEN   Two dozen letters have been exchanged between the European Commission and Bulgaria, Cyprus, and Malta over their controversial 'Golden Passport' schemes, by which rich foreigners can gain EU citizenship for large sums of money.   The letters - sent over the past 12 months - offer fresh insight into how the European Commission is trying to clamp down on a scheme it says violates EU rules.   It also shows how slow some of the states are to respond to the inquiries - with Malta taking 67 days to respond to the commission's first letter, followed by...
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For Asia’s Super-Rich, Singapore Family Offices Keep the Wealth Churning – but Hong Kong Wants a Piece of the Pie too

By Kok Xinghui   Singapore is popularly known as an Asian financial hub where companies set up regional headquarters and rich individuals park their wealth. In recent years, it has also been attracting another sort of investment through a vehicle that is just gaining popularity in the region: corporate entities called family offices that moneyed families use to structure the way they invest and preserve their riches.   From 2017 to 2019, the number of family offices in Singapore grew by five times as the region got wealthier. Some of these offices were set up by Singaporean families who want to manage their assets better,...
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Cayman’s Offshore Banking Sector Shows First-quarter Growth

By Michael Klein   In the first quarter of 2020, the assets and liabilities of Cayman Islands banks both increased for the first time in years.   The number of resident banks declined to 124 at the end of March, down from 125 at the end of 2019 and 133 at the end of 2018. But banking assets grew from US$662.7 billion to $727.5 billion in the first quarter and corresponding liabilities jumped from $662.2 billion to $723.9 billion, Cayman Islands Monetary Authority statistics show.   Since the financial crisis in 2007, cross-border assets and liabilities reported by banks licensed in...
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China $214 Billion Fund Manager Looks to Boost Overseas Inflows

With assistance by Charlie Zhu, Evelyn Yu, Mengchen Lu, and Dingmin Zhang   One of China’s largest asset managers is targeting to almost double the foreign cash it oversees as the nation’s economic rise and financial opening increase demand.   China Asset Management Co. will seek to grow such assets to at least $10 billion over the next few years, up from about $6 billion, Richard Pan, head of Global Capital Investment at the Beijing-based firm, said in an interview. Its assets under the Qualified Foreign Institutional Investor plan -- a program that allows foreigners to invest in China -- have...
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China Eases Rules, Widens US$222 Billion Inbound Investment Path, Offering the Renminbi as a Safe Haven Against Global Volatility

By Zhang Shidong   China’s yuan-denominated assets will get a fresh catalyst this month from some policy measures to give foreign stock and bond managers' wider access to the capital markets. That also means exposure to the second-best Asian currency in the past 12 months.   The central bank and market regulators have streamlined approval procedures for its inbound investment schemes, known by their QFII and RQFII acronyms, from November 1. They will also let foreign investors access a wider array of assets such as over-the-counter stocks, financial and commodity futures, and hedge funds, among others.   First announced in September, authorities will...
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Hong Kong’s Financing Role Highlighted by Ant IPO

By Fitch Wire   Fitch Ratings-Hong Kong-29 October 2020: Robust capital raising trends in Hong Kong so far this year and the imminent IPO of China’s Ant Group, an affiliate of Alibaba Group (A+/Stable), signal the territory’s continued standing as a major financial center, says Fitch Ratings. Hong Kong’s attractiveness to Chinese firms for raising international capital, as well as its sizeable external and fiscal buffers, will help to mitigate the credit impact of a recent erosion in perceptions of its governance standards and the economic shock from the coronavirus pandemic.   Total fundraising in Hong Kong this year continues...