As with the Golden Visa, the HQA Visa can lead to either permanent residency or citizenship in Portugal after 5 years. The HQA Visa, however, offers the ability for applicants to create real world ties in Portugal during the 3-year incubation period, which can greatly improve their chances of meeting the Portuguese authorities’ “real world ties” requirement.

Moreover, the endorsement obtained from the Portuguese university conducting the project research serves as a powerful vote of confidence in this regard. HQA applicants wishing to apply for permanent residency or citizenship will nonetheless be able to either pass a basic Portuguese language exam, or provide proof that they completed a basic Portuguese language course with a recognised learning institution

The level of Portuguese proficiency required to apply for citizenship is A2 Level (Basic Proficiency), and is also referred to as CIPLE level Portuguese.