Ireland became the first EU country to abolish its Golden Visa system. It happened exactly on Valentine's Day, February 14, 2023. Portugal followed suit, refusing to issue them just a day later.
The same week in Spain, political party leader Mas Pais introduced a bill to Congress to end Spain's Golden Visa program. So Spain may soon become the third country to stop issuing residence permits to foreigners in exchange for buying a house or other real estate.
Announcing the abolition of the “Golden Visas” in Ireland, Minister of Justice Simon Harris said the program was originally created to encourage investment at a time when the country was going through economic difficulties.
He did not give specific reasons, mentioning only a number of reports and conclusions of the EU Commission, the Council of Europe and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development on similar investment programs in other countries.
But in Portugal, the decision to terminate the Golden Visa program was adopted as part of a package to tackle the country's housing crisis and fight real estate speculation.
According to Spain, the leader of the left-wing political party, Más País, has introduced a bill in Congress with which he wants to repeal the possibility of obtaining a golden visa when buying a house or other types of real estate in Spain.
In Spain, Iñigo Errejon's bill has not yet been discussed in Congress, but if it is approved, the relevant articles of the law will be changed, which will automatically exclude the purchase real estate as a way to obtain a residence permit.