In the last two decades migration has seen a dramatic increase leading to a lot of negative press. There are, however, different types of persons that migrate and among them are what are commonly known as high net worth individuals (‘HNWI’s) and although various democratic governments are making promises due to pressure from public opinion to make long term immigration more difficult, this does not usually include HNWI’s who are likely to bring vast amounts of cash and job opportunities with them.
The UK has had more than double the amount of HNWI immigrants than any other country in recent years. During the period from 2000-2014 it is reported that the UK had an inflow of 125,000 HNWI’s with the US coming in second place with only 52,000 and Singapore third with 46,000. Australia, Hong Kong, the UAE, Canada and Turkey were also popular destinations for HNWI’s.
London is by far the most popular destination in the UK for these individuals due to its international nature, comprehensive travel network and lack of restrictions on buying property. The UK offers several programs to attract such individuals from being actively involved in businesses in the UK to investments to people who offer exceptional promise in their career path. In 2010 when the UK introduced its cap on non-European migration HNWI were exempted from this. At this time announcements were also made with regards to residency vastly reducing the time HNWI’s would need to stay in the UK in order to secure residency and citizenship, these announcements brought the UK into line with countries like Australia and Canada who have been attracting wealthy migrants for a number of years.