Malta’s passports scheme: Henley & Partners full statement

Response from the passport brokerage to the revelations about Malta’s cash-for-passports scheme

“Henley & Partners is proud of the service that it has provided to Malta and its people. We assisted the Maltese government in the creation of a remarkably successful sovereign financing and economic innovation platform, raising hundreds of millions of euros in debt-free capital without which healthcare, social and cultural investments would not have been possible to make to the extent that they have been in recent years.

“The direct injection of debt-free liquidity into a sovereign wealth fund (rather than increasing the debt burden for future generations) has allowed Malta to be more autonomous with its monetary and fiscal policy than would have otherwise been the case. It creates a safety net against the volatility that countries around the world are having to manage, which is particularly damaging to smaller, tourism- and global trade-reliant economies such as Malta.

“We are fully aware of the potential inherent risks in handling client applications for residence and citizenship and have invested significant time and capital in recent years to create a governance structure that is committed to the highest of standards, with due diligence at its heart.

“However, ultimately it is the responsibility of the countries involved to investigate and vet applicants. As a private company, we are neither required by law to do so, nor do we have access to the same level of background information, contacts and resources that government authorities have. Even so, our processes are well documented and are significantly more advanced than those of the majority of other investment migration industry participants, and they do regularly result in the rejection of potential clients – a position on which we pride ourselves.

“It is fundamentally false and potentially defamatory to suggest that there is a systemic problem, or that the programs we are involved in are for nefarious purposes. They are not. In reality, and while we continually strive to do better, proportionately only a very small percentage of applications – significantly less than 1% of all applications over a period of many years – have later been called into question or been found to have been potentially misused, as is evidenced in multiple independent analyses.

“We assist hundreds of clients each year to enhance their mobility, personal security and quality of life, nearly all of whom can be characterized as positive actors who have created businesses, jobs and significant societal value. They do so additionally by also investing in the countries we introduce them to. Henley & Partners makes a positive contribution to the societies and economies of host countries through this very valuable form of immigration, of which more, not less, is required globally.”

Published: 22 April 2021

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