Changes to the Friendly Nations Visa in Panama

Panama is making changes to the popular Friendly Nations visa. One big change is rather than $5000 USD in a Panamanian bank, you will now need to invest 200K, or prove an employment relationship.

It is important to note that if you have already submitted an application for residency under the Friendly Nations program, or do so before the 5th of August 2021, you will enter under the previous Friendly Nations law requirements.

However, all applications after the 5th of August 2021 will be required to comply with the new requirements.


Changes to the Panama Friendly Nations Visa 

- Panama’s Friendly Nations residency program will grant a 2-year temporary residency permit, and then the applicant may apply for permanent residency.

The new visa comes with an economic activity requirement. This means: 

1) Be employed in Panama by a legal Panama Corporation with a formal labor contract, and a work permit.

2) Purchase a real estate property with a minimum value of US$200,000 (bank financing is permitted).


OLD Rules (to apply for the Friendly Nations Visa *Before August 5th 2021) 

- Passport and second ID 

- Police records with apostille 

- Business intent - incorporating a company 

- private bank account with $5000.00 USD 

The current regulations state the applicate receives immediate permanent residency upon approval. 

NEW Rules (applying for Friendly Nations after August 5th 2021) 

- Passport only 

- no bank account needed

- Police records with apostille 

- proof you are obtaining residency for work reasons or investment reasons 

WORK REASON 
1) work letter (salary, position, repatriation expenses commitment). 

2) certificate of good standing. 

3) operation license. 

4) approval conditioned to a work permit. 

INVESTMENT REASON 
1) Investment of 200K or more in real estate 

2) Title under applicants name 

3) Bank financing allowed 

- two-year permit, permanent may be requested after, but you will need to apply again and prove that you are in Panama for work reasons or investment reasons. 


Thinking of moving to Panama? 

If you are thinking about moving to Panama, or of having Panama as a permanent residency/ tax residency... NOW is the time. 

Apply for the Friendly Nations Visa before the 5th of August 2021 to fall within the old rules and obtain your permanent residency quickly.

Learn more about the Friendly Nations Visa program and the new regulations that will soon come into effect by speaking with an immigration lawyer in Panama today. Write Playa@playacommunity.com for a list of connections that can help you in your Panama relocation journey.