Countries offering free citizenship on special merit or achievements

Certificate of British Citizenship

There are several countries in the world having special provisions in citizenship laws granting citizenship based on public interest such as achievements in the field of science, sports, technology, research, energy and art/culture. The paperwork and bureaucratic procedure is quite difficult and may take many months as the decisions are made by minister.

Citizenship in Europe

Austria

Austria

(11(4)) Person has been resident in Austria for 6 years and acquisition of citizenship is in the interest of the country in the field of science,commerce,, the arts or sport. Austria(10(6))Person has past or future achievements that are in the special interest of Austria (constitutional provision). No residence or secure income requirement and no renunciation of previous citizenship.

Belgium

Belgium

(19) – Person legally resides in Belgium and has demonstrated exceptional achievements (scientific, sports,culture) that are in the special interest of the country.

Bulgaria

flagbg

(16)Person has special achievements in the social and economic sphere, in science, technology, culture or sports.

Croatia

Croatia flag

(12.1) Person is someone whose acquisition of citizenship wouldbe in the special interest of Croatia.

Cyprus

Cyprus flag

(CYP 111, Schedule 3 Article 2(f))- Person has performed special services to Cyprus for reasons of public interest.

Czech Republic

Czech Republic

(16) Person whose naturalization is of benefit to the Czech Republic in the fields of science, education, culture, sports, or if it serves to implement the international commitments of the Czech Republic, humanitarian purposes, or another state interest.

Estonia

Estonia

(10) Person has special merits in the area of science,culture, sports or in other areas (maximum of 10 persons per year).

France

France flag

(21-19(6), 21-18(2), 21-21) Person is someone with exceptional services for France or a case of special public interest, has rendered or could render importance services for France because of her/his Investment

Germany

Germany flag

(8) Person has been resident in Germany for 3 years and his or her acquisition of citizenship is in the special interest of the country, e.g. in the field of science, research, trade and industry, arts, culture, media, sports or public service.

Greece

Greece flag

(13,5(3)) Person has provided extraordinary services to Greece or his/her naturalisation would serve the country’s extraordinary interests.

Hungary

Hungary flag

(4(7) Person serves an important interest of Hungary.

Ireland

Ireland

(12) Person has done signal honor or rendered distinguished service to Ireland, or is the child or grandchild of such a person. Honorary citizenship bestowed on a foreigner is full legal citizenship including the right to reside and vote.

Italy

Italy flag

(9 (2)) Person has rendered distinguished services to Italy or the acquisition of citizenship would serve outstanding public interests.

Latvia

Latvia

(13) Person has rendered special meritorious service for the benefit of Latvia.

Lithuania

Lithuania

(20) Person makes a substantial contribution to strengthening Lithuanian statehood, to increasing the country’s might and to promoting its authority in the international community.

Luxembourg

Luxembourg

(8) Person has rendered exceptional services to Luxembourg.

Malta

Malta flag

(10(9)) Person has rendered exceptional services to Malta or to humanity.

Netherlands

Netherlands

(10) Person is a special case

Portugal

Portugal flag

(6(6)) Person has rendered or is called to render relevant services to Portugal or to the Portuguese community.

Qatar

Qatar

Provisions of Articles 2 and 18 of this Law, by an Emiri decision Qatari nationality may be granted to those who have rendered great service to the country, or who have particular skills the country need, or students who excel by showing promising scientific ability. Based on the requirements of the public interest, Qatari nationality may be granted in such cases to the persons concerned, who may also retain their original nationality

Slovakia

Slovakia

(7) Person is someone of special benefit to Slovakia in the area of economics, science, technology, culture, sport or society, or the person’s acquisition is otherwise in the interest of the country.

Slovenia

Slovenia

(13) Person is an adult whose acquisition of citizenship is beneficial for the country due to scientific, economic,cultural, national or other similar reasons.

New Zealand

New Zealand

under a provision of a 1977 law,  grants citizenship under “exceptional circumstances and public interest” for persons who don’t live or plan to live in the country.

The citizenship laws in these countries DO NOT contain provisions on naturalisation on grounds of special achievements.

  • Denmark,
  • Finland,
  • Poland,
  • Spain,
  • Sweden
  • United Kingdom

Honorary Citizenship

US citizenship and passport

Honorary citizenship is a status bestowed by a country on a foreign individual whom it considers to be especially admirable or otherwise worthy of the distinction. It is extremely rare to get one in countries such as US or Canada.

United States

United States

By act of United States Congress and presidential assent, honorary United States citizenship has been awarded to only eight individuals.

Canada

Canada

Honorary Canadian citizenship requires the unanimous approval of Parliament.

 

References: http://cadmus.eui.eu/bitstream/handle/1814/34484/RSCAS_2015_08.pdf?sequence=1

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Balakrishnan Prabhu

Mr. Balakrishnan Prabhu is the founder of Corpocrat magazine. He is also the founder of Best Citizenships (BC), assisting wealthy individuals with with global citizenship and residency programs in Europe. His other interests are Linux, Machine learning, Wordpress, etc. You can contact him here