Chinese EB-5 Applicants on the Rise

Chinese EB-5 Applicants on the Rise

May 30, 2012


An increase in Chinese applicants for EB-5 Visas in the United States has been noted by immigration lawyers in both the US and abroad, leading some to suggest political turmoil and economic slowdown in China as a cause. Applicants for the program are more increasingly business people and politicians seeking to protect their wealth and families, according to a recent report by Wall Street Journal. Other trends have been noted, including the upcoming US review of the program, scheduled for September 2012.


As the EB5 visa program is set to undergo review in September, and must be reauthorized to continue, applicants are pushing to submit applications prior to the date to ensure consideration. The last review took place in 2009, whereupon the number of EB-5 Visa applications spiked as well. According to recent reports from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the US Department of State, 75% of investor-immigrant applicants in US fiscal 2011 were from China.


Another possible reason for the rise in Chinese investors applying for EB-5 Visas in the United States may be the recent cap on Canadian investments. The Canadian counterpart required applicants to post an 800,000 Canadian dollar (US $799,500), five-year, interest-free loan for governments in the country’s provinces. Due to a backlog in applications that has resulted in process times of more than three years, the Canadian government is not accepting any more investment cases, at least until July 2012.


As opposed to the Canadian Visa program, the United States requires one of two investments: At least a $1 million investment that leads to 10 full-time jobs within two years, or a $500,000 investment, if the U.S. jobs created are in high-unemployment or rural areas. Since the program’s 1990 inception, the US has seen an increase in applicants year after year. In recent years, the increase in Chinese applicants has been undeniable. During the 2011 fiscal year, which ended in September, the US accepted 2,969 applications, which can include the investor plus several family members, from China. In 2009, only 787 investors were Chinese.


While immigration attorneys speculate the nature of the increase in Chinese investors seeking citizenship outside their native country, explaining that many rarely provide reasons for seeking other citizenships, they explain that they are searching for reliable, quick strategies. Chinese investors seeking foreign citizenship will find Regional Centers within the United States to be valuable sources of information and opportunity. As the country sees a rise in both Chinese and other international applications, the competition for approval will increase as well. It is imperative to obtain the services of a competent and respected Regional Center if you are seeking an EB-5 Visa.


Florida Regional Center was established as an agent of the 1990 Congress-approved EB-5 Regional Center Program. Based in Palm Beach Gardens and representing projects in the greater South Florida area, Florida Regional Center works with foreign investors and their families to obtain EB-5 Visas and permanent residency in exchange for investments in community development and economy boosting campaigns.


For more information on EB-5 Visas and the EB-5 Visa Program, to learn about Florida Regional Center or to speak with a representative from Florida Regional Center, visit