So you want to move to one of the Eastern Caribbean islands and start a new life? There are many decisions and even more options involved in such a move, and one of them can be economic citizenship.
Why economic citizenship? Economic citizenship programmes in the region allow foreign nationals a fast track to full citizenship of a participating country, through a government sponsored programme. For both personal and professional reasons, this can be a perfect solution for a number of reasons. If you have made a commitment to a lifestyle change, economically, physically and emotionally you want to move forward and finalise that commitment as soon as possible, which can include becoming a citizen.
Of course, its not going to be a cheap option, but a great alternative to waiting the normal five or seven years for full citizenship with passport and voting rights. Although it can take up to 30 years in the worst case countries, and even then, there are no guarantees of success. So you must do your research carefully and find out which countries are most welcoming to new citizens.
There are few Caribbean countries with an active disincentive policy towards new citizenry, but the BVI is currently creating just that, so unless you were particularly determined to live and work in the BVI, you will find it an uphill struggle to start your new life there. For example, a new policy document states that businesses may not employ foreign workers for longer than 4.5 years, after which the worker must leave.
Most Eastern Caribbean countries do not have an economic citizenship programme, although many are amenable to an approach from a private individual with a very deep pocket.
It has to be a win/win situation, for the country and for the aspiring citizen. It has to be well thought out by each country to maximize the benefits, and those countries that have not set up the correct framework for the process have found themselves bogged down with their own bureaucracy and frustrated potential citizens. Small countries especially have to protect themselves with a legal framework that doesn't bend under political or commercial pressures. Countries with tiny gross national incomes of, for example, less than 200 million US dollars are small cheese for a private wealthy investor and could be bought out a number of times over! Nevertheless the benefits can be considerable and include, capital investment, generating a new wealth class, and giving room to motivated citizens who are likely to start businesses, add to the education and even the gene pool, and generally stimulating the economy.