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Property giant Pam Golding and EB-5 investment visa specialists American Dream have combined forces to provide EB-5 investment visa expertise to SA investors looking to participate in the EB-5 Investment Programme, to gain permanent residency, and in due course, US citizenship.

Both organisations, being experts in their respective fields, will do their part to provide essential guidance and a complete service to applicants to enable them to invest in suitable commercial property ventures in the US. 

What is EB-5?

EB-5 is a popular method to emigrate to the US. It allows foreign nationals, their spouses and unmarried children under the age of 21 the ability to get an American visa based on a minimum investment in a for-profit, at-risk enterprise with the objective to create or retain a specified number of jobs.

EB-5 was created by the US Congress in 1990 to drive the creation of jobs in the US, through capital investment by foreign investors. There are various types of visas to gain entry to the US but EB-5 is currently the fastest way to obtain an American Green Card.

The Green Card is valid for 10 years and if the investment is made in a designated targeted employment area (TEA), applicants need only invest $500,000 (about R7.1m) in an eligible business, that will see the creation of 10 jobs.

Benefits of EB-5

Successful applicants have the right to live, work, study or start a business anywhere in the US, with access to American educational institutions, medical facilities and social programmes at the same cost a US citizen would pay. It also gives applicants and their families the opportunity to gain full US citizenship after only five years of permanent residency.

Also, upon successful completion of the EB-5 project invested in, the applicant will see the full return of the $500,000 invested.

The need for haste

There has been a phenomenal response and a surge in interest in EB-5 with an estimated 600% increase in EB-5 petition filings from South Africans in 2019, compared to three years ago. This translates into six to seven enquiries per day by people who qualify and who are ready to take the step to ensure a secure future for their families.  

Over the past 15 years, American Dream has assisted more than 300 SA families gain lawful permanent residence in the US via the EB-5 programme. Long-awaited changes to the EB-5 residency visa are now imminent though, so South Africans planning to enter the US through an EB-5 investment should lodge their applications as soon as possible.

Among the expected changes are an increase in the minimum investment from $500,000 to $1.35m (R19.1m) for ventures located within TEAs. Many other changes to the rules that define TEAs are also expected.

Selecting the right partner

American Dream is aligned to EB-5 regional centres and has led the way in introducing the EB-5 programme in SA. It is SA-based, with offices in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban, and offers support to clients with a full team of legal and financial experts, assisting investors through every aspect of their emigration journey.

Stuart Ferguson, CEO of American Dream says, “The EB-5 Investment Programme offers investors a fast and simple way to make a smart investment, while at the same time acquiring a non-restrictive Green Card and future US citizenship for themselves and their immediate family.

“Holders of the EB-5 visa can live anywhere in the US and enjoy the benefits of a stable and strong economy, full employment, a very good standard of living, exceptional medical care, high-quality tertiary education facilities, and friendly people.” 

Investment in a commercial property venture is an approved strategy for EB-5 visa applicants, Chris Immelman, head of Pam Golding International says: “The partnership between Pam Golding and American Dream provides investors with a turnkey service that provides applicants with a sense of comfort and trust, while removing all the stress related with the process.”

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For further information visit pamgolding.co.za/usa or email international@pamgolding.co.za

This article was paid for by Pam Golding International.

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