English translation of the Bulgarian Citizenship Act and the Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria Act

Original Bulgarian text

  1. Bulgarian Citizenship Act
  2. Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria Act

Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria Act

Section 25. (1) Permanent residence may be acquired by foreigners:

  1. who have made an investment in or increased their investment by acquiring:

A) shares or bonds of Bulgarian companies, traded on a regulated market or a multilateral trading facility in the Republic of Bulgaria where such have a market value of not less than BGN 2,000,000;

B) concession agreement rights with a contract value of not less than BGN 1,000,000;

C) units or shares with a value of not less than BGN 1,000,000 in collective investment schemes originating in the Republic of Bulgaria, operating in accordance with the Collective Investment Schemes and Other Collective Investment Undertakings Organisation Act , and provided that:

     a. the net asset value of each collective investment scheme is not less than BGN 5,000,000;

     b. the collective investment scheme has been licensed or authorised by the Financial Supervision Commission;

     c. The scheme’s investment strategy is focused mainly on investments in shares and / or bonds under “a” above;

D) units or shares with a value of not less than BGN 1,000,000 invested in alternative investment funds established in the Republic of Bulgaria, managed by persons who manage alternative investment funds, originating in the Republic of Bulgaria, operating in accordance with the Collective Investment Schemes and Other Collective Investment Undertakings Organisation Act, and provided that:

    a. the assets of each fund are of a value of not less than BGN 3,000,000;

    b. the alternative investment funds and the persons managing the alternative investment funds are licensed or registered by the Financial Supervision Commission;

    c. their investment strategy is focused mainly on investments in Bulgarian assets and they invest only in shares, stocks and bonds of Bulgarian companies, including joint stock companies with a special investment purpose;

  1. who have invested in Bulgaria by paying in the capital of a Bulgarian company an amount of not less than BGN 2,000,000 for a priority investment project implemented by the company, certified under the Investment Promotion Act, where such project is certified by Ministry of Economy;
  2. who have invested in the capital of a Bulgarian company whose shares are not traded on a regulated market an amount not less than BGN 6,000,000;

  1. who are engaged in the business of  and are certified pursuant to the Investment Promotion Act, certified by the Ministry of Economy in accordance with section 25C;

  1. who have invested in Bulgaria by paying into the capital of a Bulgarian commercial company not less than BGN 500,000, whereas the foreign national is a partner or shareholder with registered shares holding not less than 50 per cent. of the capital of the company and where as a result of the investment new tangible and intangible fixed assets worth at least BGN 500,000 have been acquired and at least 10 jobs have been created for Bulgarian nationals, which are maintained for the period of residence, to be certified by the Ministry of Economy. The Ministry of Economy certifies the investment on the basis of an application supported by evidence by the Bulgarian company for the need for the foreign national to reside for the duration of the implementation and maintenance of the investment.

Bulgarian Citizenship Act

[SECTION 12 REFERS TO THE GENERAL POSITION AS TO NORMAL NATURALISATION]

Section 12. (1) A person who is not a Bulgarian citizen may acquire Bulgarian citizenship if by the date of filing the application for naturalisation he or she:

  1. has become of age (is over 18 years old);
  2. no less than 5 years prior has been granted a permanent residence permit in the Republic of Bulgaria;
  3. has not been convicted of a premeditated crime of a general nature by a Bulgarian court and no criminal prosecution has been instituted for such a crime against him or her, unless he or she is rehabilitated;
  4. has an income or occupation which enables him or her to support him- or herself in the Republic of Bulgaria
 
[SECTION 12A REFERS TO THE STANDARD TRACK OPTION FOR THE MAIN APPLICANT AND FAMILY MEMBERS OR THE FAST TRACK OPTION FOR THE SPOUSE OF A FAST TRACK APPLICANT]

Section 12A. (1) A person who has obtained Bulgarian permanent residence in accordance with section 25(1) subsections 6, 7 or 8 of the Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria Act or as a family member of such a person; or in accordance with section 25(1) subsection 13  read in conjunction with section 25C(2) subsections 2 and 3 of the Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria Act; or in accordance with section 25(1) subsection 16 of the Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria Act can acquire Bulgarian citizenship if they meet the requirements of section 12(1) subsections 1, 2, 3 and 4 of the Bulgarian Citizenship Act.

(2) A person who is not a Bulgarian citizen, is a spouse of a person who has been granted a permanent residence permit in the Republic of Bulgaria on the grounds of section 25(1), subsections 6, 7, 13 or 16 of the Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria Act, and who, not less than three years prior the date of the application for naturalisation has been granted permanent residence in the Republic of Bulgaria, may acquire Bulgarian citizenship if he or she meets the requirements of section 12(1), subsections 1, 3 and 4 and where his or her spouse has acquired Bulgarian citizenship by naturalisation under section 14A(1) of this Act.

[SECTION 14 REFERS TO THE FAST TRACK OPTION FOR THE MAIN APPLICANT]

Section 14A. (1) A person who is not a Bulgarian citizen but meets the requirements of section 12(1),  subsections 1 and 3 may acquire Bulgarian Citizenship by naturalisation if:

  1. not less than one year ago has received a permanent residence permit in the Republic of Bulgaria on the grounds of section 25 (1), subsections 6 or 7 of the Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria Act and:

     a) has doubled their investment under the same conditions of law, OR

     b) has invested in Bulgaria by paying in the capital of a Bulgarian company an additional amount of not less than BGN 1,000,000 for a priority investment project implemented by the company, where such project has been certified under the Investment Promotion Act;

2. not less than one year ago has been granted permanent residence in the Republic of Bulgaria on the grounds of section 25(1), subsections 13 in conjunction with section 25C(2), subsections 1 of the Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria Act, during which period the investments made and put into operation are maintained above the minimum threshold for the issuance of a class A investment certificate under the Investment Promotion Act, certified by the Ministry of Economy;

3. not less than one year ago has been granted a permanent residence in the Republic of Bulgaria on the grounds of section 25(1), subsection 16 of the Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria Act, has increased the investment under the same conditions of the law to at least BGN 1,000,000 and as a result of the investments, at least 20 new jobs have been created for Bulgarian citizens.

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