Once the shackles of the former Soviet Union were broken this small Baltic state of 1.3-million emerged as an innovative force in Europe. After joining the EU in 2004, Estonia showed great budgetary discipline in the wake of the financial crisis and its GDP per person has grown by 30-per cent. It has emerged as one of the most digitally advanced countries that it hopes will attract wealthy foreigners here to start on-line businesses.
A non-EU citizen who owns shares in a company or acts as a sole proprietor and who has a continuous income, may apply for residence permit for business in Estonia. The company or the sole proprietor must be registered in the Estonian Commercial Register and the settlement of the alien in Estonia must be important for the business. The company or the sole proprietor is required to have a business plan which states the character and range of the business, financial forecasts for the next two financial years, number of staff, necessary qualifications and know-how of the staff, and one of the following must apply:
Non-EU citizen has invested in Estonia a capital sum of 65 000 EUR under his/her control in the case of a company;
Non-EU citizen has invested in Estonia a capital sum of 16 000 EUR under his/her control in the case of a sole proprietor.
The equity capital of a company, subordinated liability and registered fixed assets value may be considered as investment.
It is necessary to show legal income for the last 6 months that is equal to the eighteen Estonian average wages.