EB-5 Visa Changes: What Could it Mean for Foreign Investors?

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Two Foreign InvestorsThe EB-5 visa was a popular option for affluent Chinese families who wished to move to the U.S. in the last few years. The program allows entrepreneurs, their spouses, and qualified children to apply for a green card if they invest in a commercial enterprise in the U.S. that will create at least 10 permanent jobs.

The overall popularity of the EB-5 visa is not only due to migration purposes, however. It also provides an opportunity to invest money in a secure place. Oppenhuizen Law Firm, PLC, a law firm that specializes in EB-5 visa applications, considers both of these angles when assisting its clients.

Popularity Among Chinese Investors

The EB-5 visa is generally for foreign investors, but it is most popular among Chinese entrepreneurs, who make up around 85 percent of the overall participants for the visa type. In 2015 alone, they invested approximately $3.5- 4 billion in EB-5 programs.

Some of the successful EB-5 projects by Chinese investors are the Century Plaza in Los Angeles, Resorts World in Las Vegas, and New York’s Hudson Yards.

A Looming Change for the EB-5 Visa

The current EB-5 program is set to expire in April 2017, and Congress is debating whether or not to increase the minimum investment from $500,000 to $1.35 million in order to extend the program for six more months. As a reaction to the possible change, potential Chinese investors are clamoring to file their applications before the EB-5 program expires.

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EB-5 Visa to Remain Popular, According to Experts

Investorist founder and marketing expert Jon Ellis believes that even if the minimum investment more than doubles, the EB-5 visa will remain popular among Chinese investors. He pointed out that in Australia, the minimum investment requirement is around $5 million, after all.

Despite the changing policies, experts’ outlook remains strong, and they encourage Chinese investors to have a positive outlook at the investment opportunities in the U.S.