Elite banking, citizenship, financial security.

Below we have a short fictitious case study about an investor who is looking for a new banking destination. Specifically, this article highlights how choosing to invest and bank in Switzerland can address multiple needs of an individual looking for a safer and healthier banking destination.

Ahmad Salib is a business owner living in Oman. He has a net worth of roughly 10.5 million dollars, with assets including a home, two offshore properties, and a portfolio filled with stocks.

Case: Offshore investor seeking financial security

Unhappy with the socioeconomic state of the middle east, Ahmad feels that his portfolio has the potential to reach the next level by taking his wealth offshore. He and his wife have two young children and feel they are mobile enough to move, especially before their children begin school. One of his biggest concerns is his current banking situation. He wants a more trustworthy banking system that offers services that will allow him to expand his portfolio. With investments in two offshore properties, he understands the power of an investment in a different country. He wants to choose a jurisdiction with a healthy investment climate so he can get the most out of his wealth.

Further, with political instability nearly everywhere in the world, Ahmad has been thinking about creating a backup plan for him and his family. While he and his wife have discussed their ability to move, their proximity to their family makes them unsure, but Ahmad does not want to be stuck in the Middle East in the event there is any political unrest. For this reason, in addition to economic stability, Ahmad wants to find a region where he can set up a second residency or even dual citizenship, so he is mobile when the time may arise.

Let us take a look at how Ahmad can take advantage of the elite banking system and economy of Switzerland. If you are like Ahmad and want to take your wealth outside the Middle East banking systems, contact Alpen Partners below.

Swiss Banking and Citizenship

First, to meet Ahmad’s needs, we addressed his offshore banking concerns. Switzerland is one of the best places in the world for offshore banking. One of the biggest draws to offshore banking in Switzerland is security. For some, depositing money into a bank in their home country is not safe. Luckily, you can choose a country that has historically had higher regulations, transparent jurisdictions, and an all-around more secure banking system. This is also beneficial for those who have chosen to expatriate. Many expatriate destinations don’t have the safest banks. For those feeling the restriction of the investment opportunities at home, offshore banks offer a wide choice of funds and investments that aren’t available in your home country.

Further, when looking for an offshore bank, one should choose a country with a strong economy. Since we’ve already established that, we can now look into even more reasons why an account in Switzerland is one of the best offshore bank accounts. Banks play an important role in the Swiss economy. Because of this, Swiss banking is also highly regarded around the world. They are well known for sophisticated and discreet banking services. Choosing Switzerland as a banking destination is choosing years and years of financial stability and growth.

Privacy is a leading factor for those looking to bank offshore. With the same expectations as doctor/patient confidentiality, Swiss laws forbid bankers to disclose that someone even holds a bank account or any information about it without the consent of the account holder. If any of the information is divulged, laws require that immediate prosecution begins.

Holding a bank account in Switzerland is ideal for many because their home country is not as economically nor politically stable as the Swiss government. They are worried about the security of their domestically stored funds. Opening a bank account in Switzerland is not hard; it just may take some time. You may also be asked to have a valid passport, various documents about your financial history and income, and documents proving you are who you say you are.

Not only do individuals trust Swiss banks to hold their money, but they also trust them to store their gold and other precious metals. Gold has been a popular way to store wealth for many years, and Swiss banks understand the importance of owning actual gold, rather than paper saying you own gold. Storing your gold in Swiss vaults has been a proven way for those who would like to protect their gold from doing so safely with trusted banks. Switzerland has historically been one of the leading countries in terms of offshore gold storage. The country has one of the world’s largest reserves of gold per capita.

To address Ahmad’s worry about being stuck in his home country, we explained how he could earn a residency in Switzerland. Through these routes, he can move his family to be closer to his wealth and engage directly with his bank to have a hands-on investment approach, or he will have a solid back up plan for the future. There are a handful of routes to gaining residency and citizenship in Switzerland. One way that Ahmad can easily earn residency in Switzerland is through residency by investment.  To qualify, he must prove they have at least USD 1 million at their disposal before applying. The investor can gain the residency permit by either creating a Swiss company or paying a lump sum taxation (LST) fee that is roughly USD 170,000 or CHF 150,000.

If and when he is ready to change his citizenship completely, or even earn second citizenship, Ahmad has the option to do so in Switzerland. After holding residency, he and his family could go through the naturalization process. Here is a brief outline of this process:

  • Holding permanent residency (such as through investment)
  • Have lived in Switzerland for at least ten years
  • Must speak in German (Swiss German preferred), French, Italian or Romansch
  • Can demonstrate they have fully integrated into the Swiss way of life, familiarity with Swiss habits, customs and traditions, understanding and obeying Swiss laws, etc.

Taking Your Life Offshore with Alpen Partners

At Alpen Partners, we only entrust your money in the hands of the most prestigious and trustworthy banks. When you choose us to guide you through the tricky world of investment, financial planning, and asset managing, know that you are also choosing the world’s best banks, both private and public. With several private banks, we also have relationships with the two biggest public banks in the country, UBS, and Credit Suisse. These banks together hold almost $1.85 billion in assets. For more information about our partnerships with Swiss banks, visit this page.

Our experts are also equipped to assist with any and all expatriation needs. From choosing where you want to relocate to getting a second passport, we can help you every step of the way.

Alpen Partners Opinion

Switzerland has the most highly regarded banking system in the world. By utilizing the many investment vehicles available in Switzerland, we add deeper levels of diversification. There is no doubt that the majority of portfolios can, and should be, taking advantage of what Switzerland has to offer.