Montenegro is located in the south-eastern part of Europe on the Balkan Peninsula. Access to the Adriatic Sea, comfortable climate and beautiful nature ensure the influx of many tourists to the country. According to local authorities, the number of foreigners visiting Montenegrin resorts annually exceeds several times the entire population of the state, which is about 626.3 thousand people.

Citizenship of Montenegro

The tourism sector is the main source of filling the budget and generator of jobs, including for migrant workers. A lot of applicants from different countries come to work in Montenegro. Many foreigners do business in this country, buy real estate and seek to stay here to live forever. On how to obtain citizenship of Montenegro in 2024 we will talk further.

Registration of citizenship of Montenegro

Montenegro is a fairly young European state, which declared independence only in 2006. A little less than half of the local residents are ethnic Montenegrins, about a third are Serbs, followed by Bosnians, Albanians, Croats and some other nationalities.

Montenegro is not currently a member of the European Union, but is an official candidate for membership. Nevertheless, the official currency in the country is the euro. Montenegro has a Mediterranean climate with dry, hot summers and relatively cold winters with heavy snowfall and rain.

Note. The average life expectancy in Montenegro is 76.1 years (women – 78.1; men – 74.1).

The procedure and methods of obtaining a Montenegrin passport are regulated by the local Law on Citizenship from 2008. According to this document, there are five legal ways to obtain Montenegrin citizenship.

Based on international treaties and agreements

By descent

Children automatically obtain Montenegrin citizenship regardless of place of birth, if at least one of the parents is Montenegrin.

By birth on the territory of Montenegro

Any child born or found on the territory of Montenegro is granted citizenship if nothing is known about the parents or they are stateless.

By granting (naturalization)

The naturalization procedure in Montenegro is quite complicated and requires meeting a number of conditions:

  • Age of at least 18 years.

  • Legal residence on Montenegrin territory for at least 10 years. At first, the foreigner must obtain a residence permit, for example, related to employment or business. After 5 years, it is possible to obtain permanent residency status for the same 5 years. Only after that an application for a Montenegrin passport is submitted.

  • Availability of living space (ownership/rent) and legal source of income for living in Montenegro.

  • Possession of Montenegrin language at a conversational level.

  • No unexpunged criminal record both in Montenegro and in any other state for a crime involving imprisonment for more than one year.

  • The person is not involved in disorderly conduct and does not threaten the national security of Montenegro.

  • The candidate has no tax debts and fulfills other legal obligations.

  • Absence or automatic revocation of a passport of another state after Montenegrin citizenship.

By law, applications for Montenegrin citizenship are considered no more than 6 months. In case of a negative decision, the person receives a written (reasoned) refusal.

In some cases, the Ministry of Interior and the State Administration of Montenegro may grant a foreigner citizenship even if any of the above points are not complied with, if it is in the interests of the state. First of all, we are talking about scientific, cultural, economic and sports achievements of the candidate.

Important. More quickly obtain citizenship of Montenegro allows the presence of marital relations with the holder of Montenegrin passport for at least 3 years and continuous (legal) residence on the territory of the country for more than 5 years.

Citizenship of Montenegro through investment

Montenegrin authorities for quite a long time considered the issue of granting foreigners citizenship of Montenegro for investments, that is, through investment in local businesses, purchase of real estate or contributions to State Funds. Finally, on November 22, 2018, the government adopted the relevant Decree and the program began to operate on January 1, 2019. In total, up to 2,000 applications will be accepted.

To obtain Montenegrin citizenship, the amount of investment must be between 100 and 450 thousand euros, depending on the district:

  • 450 thousand euros – capital Podgorica and coastal areas.

  • 250 thousand euros – northern and central districts.

  • 100 thousand euros – less developed areas.

In addition, at the time of application, the candidate for Montenegrin citizenship must contribute 15,000 euros for himself, as well as 10,000 euros for four family members and 50,000 euros for each additional family member.

Dual citizenship in Montenegro

Unlike most developed European countries, it is forbidden to have dual citizenship in Montenegro. Exceptions are provided only in two cases:

  1. Persons who had dual citizenship before the declaration of Montenegro's independence (June 3, 2006) may retain the passport of another state.

  2. It is allowed to hold a second passport of those states with which Montenegro has signed bilateral agreements. Currently, this is only Macedonia.

In conclusion, we note that in 2024 the Montenegrin passport gives the right to visa-free visits to more than 100 countries, including the European Union, Switzerland and Singapore.

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