Gold visas: delays at SEF leave investors “stuck” in Portugal

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There are cases of people who have had their document expire two years ago and still don’t know when it will be renewed.

There are hundreds of foreign investors “stuck” in Portugal for not being able to renew the Residence Permit for Investment Activity (ARI), the so-called gold visas. At issue are delays in the Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF).

In practice, according to Público, which reports the news, these investors with expired gold visas are prevented from entering or leaving Portugal, i.e., they cannot transit between airports and, if they manage to do so, they risk being held in other countries.

According to data provided by SEF to the newspaper, on June 28, 1,256 ARI renewal requests and 1,939 family reunion requests were pending. There are also cases of people who have had their documents expire two years ago and still do not know when they will be renewed, according to the reports of several people to the same publication.

SEF says it is “working on solving technical issues related to extending the validity of documents, simplifying the ARI renewal system and other regulatory issues essential to the operation of the platforms,” adding that “a new opening for grants and renewals is being prepared and will be launched later this year.

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