Portugal D2 Entrepreneur Visa Program 2021

Looking to settle in Portugal on the basis of business establishment? Whether you are a self-employed consultant, digital nomad, online entrepreneur, affiliate marketer or technology worker, the Portugal D2 Visa offers a fast, simple path to obtaining Portuguese residency and eventual citizenship for you and your family.

Find out more about the D2 Residency Program below, or contact us now for more information.

The Portugal D2 Entrepreneur Visa Program at a glance

The D2 Visa is arguably one of the most straightforward entrepreneurial residency programs in Europe. Also referred to as the Portugal Residence Permit for Entrepreneurial Immigrants, or Visto D2 in Portuguese, the program is fast becoming popular among non-EEA entrepreneurs seeking to settle in Portugal. It must also be noted that the D2 Residency Program is separate from the Portuguese startup business.

Under the D2 visa, you can therefore set up a more conventional business (e.g. a restaurant or guest house), and you could even set up a Portuguese branch of your existing foreign business. You are, however, allowed to start a technology focused business under the D2 Visa Program.

Applications are done via your local Portuguese consulate.

Under the D2 visa, Portuguese residency permits have historically been issued for an initial period of 1 year, after which the permit becomes renewable every 2 years.

Legal basis: Article 60 (2) of Decree No. 23/2007 of 4 July, regulated by article 31(2) (3) of Regulation Decree No. 84/2007 of 5 November, and Paragraph 2 of article 89 as amended by Law no. 59/2017 of 07/21, and the fourth amendment to the Foreigners Act of 1 August 2017 serves as the legal basis for the D2 Residency and Visa Program.

Benefits of the D2 Visa and Residency Program

  1. NO SIGNIFICANT INVESTMENT: A key benefit of the program is that unlike the Golden Visa, you aren’t required to make a minimum investment of €350,000. It is however advisable to capitalize your new business with a minimum of €5,000 with a view to bolster the credibility and viability of your proposed business plan.

  2. NO LANGUAGE REQUIREMENT: You won’t be required to speak Portuguese in order to apply for the D2 Residency Program, however, you will need to be able to pass a basic Portuguese proficiency test (A2 Level) in order to apply for citizenship. You can also meet this requirement by submitting a language school diploma or certificate proving that you are suitably proficient in the language.

  1. FAST APPLICATION PROCESS: Your D2 Visa and residency application can be completed in as little as 4 to 5 months.

  1. VISA-FREE EU TRAVEL: As a resident of Portugal, you can travel visa-free to 26 other EU countries for work or leisure.

  1. BRING YOUR FAMILY: Subject to being able to prove marital and blood ties and the means to accommodate and support your spouse and dependent children, you can apply to bring your family to Portugal on the basis of family reunification.

Why choose Portugal

  1. HIGH STANDARD OF LIVING: Portugal offers world-class living standards in a highly central location. The country is ranked among the Top 15 safest countries in the world. It is therefore not surprising that the D2 Visa Program is gaining popularity among foreign entrepreneurs seeking safety and stability for their families. In addition, the country boasts spectacular natural scenery and a generally pleasant, sunny climate all year round.

  1. LOW COST OF LIVING: In terms of living costs, Portugal is one of the most affordable countries in Europe (the minimum wage in the country is only €650 per month). 

  1. GATEWAY TO EUROPE: For entrepreneurs seeking to gain frictionless travel and trade access to the 26 other EU markets, Portugal can serve as an excellent strategic business location. And with a domestic market of over 500 million consumers, Portuguese business opportunities abound…

  1. LOW LABOUR COSTS: Portugal boasts a highly educated workforce, with labour costs being substantially lower than in many other EU countries. Especially for tech entrepreneurs and startup founders seeking to scale their EU operations, Portugal could therefore be an excellent location for establishing European headquarters. 

  1. WORLD CLASS BUSINESS INFRASTRUCTURE: Offering world-class internet connectivity, transport and telecommunications infrastructure, Portugal is an ideal location for starting a digital or technology focused business.

  1. THE LAND OF OPPORTUNITY: With its larger cities such as Lisbon and Porto boasting a bourgeoning tech and startup scene, Portugal offers tech entrepreneurs ample scope for networking and productive collaboration. Also being one of the world’s most popular travel destinations, there is also ample scope for doing business in the tourism and hospitality sectors.

  1. ATTRACTIVE TAXATION: Portugal offers a relatively low corporate tax rate (21% on net profit) and simplified tax codes, making it a very attractive place in which to establish and grow a European business. Income derived from property is taxed at only 10%.

 

D2 Visa Application process and timeframes

The application process typically takes 4 to 5 months to complete, with a decision typically received within 60 days of application submission.

STEP 1: Sign a service contract with your preferred Portuguese business immigration firm.

STEP 1: Compilation and development of your business plan

STEP 2: Make an appointment with SEF to get your residency permit.

STEP 3: Apply at consular office in your country of residency.

STEP 4: Gain approval from the Portuguese authorities

STEP 5: Attend your SEF interview in Portugal and obtain your Portuguese residency permit.

Key program requirements

  1. BUSINESS PLAN: In order to apply for the D2 Visa you’ll be required to establish a new entrepreneurial business, based on a viable business plan. Your business plan will be appraised in terms of its financial viability, and on its potential economic, social, technological, cultural and/or scientific relevance.

  2. PORTUGUESE COMPANY FORMATION: Investment operations need to be executed on company incorporated.

  3. NOMINAL BUSINESS CAPITALISATION: In order to maximise your chances of being approved, a minimum business capitalisation of €5,000 is recommended.

  1. COMPREHENSIVE HEALTH INSURANCE: In order to apply for the D2 Program, you will be required to have comprehensive, EU-wide health insurance cover, both for you and for any dependent applicants. Such health insurance policies must typically be pre-paid up front for the full period for which your residency permit is issued for.

  2. PROOF OF ADEQUATE FINANCIAL MEANS: Proof of means of maintenance and subsistence funds (approximately €580 per month, plus half of that per dependent applicant). This needs to be available in Portugal.

  3. D2 RESIDENCY: MINIMUM STAY REQUIREMENTS:

In order to keep your residency permit renewable under the D2 Residency Program, you will be expected to maintain an in-country presence as follows:

    • Year 1: 4 months

    • Years 2, 3, 4 and: 6 months per year.

  1. RENEWAL REQUIREMENTS: You’ll have to be able to prove trade from running your business operation, and will be required to file quarterly VAT and annual tax returns with the Portuguese Chamber of Commerce. In addition, you’ll also be required to contribute €209 per person per month to social security.

 

  1. APPLYING FOR PORTUGUESE CITIZENSHIP: In addition, in order to be eligible to apply for citizenship after 5 years, you’ll also have to be able to pass a basic Portuguese language proficiency test and prove real-world ties with the country. 

Key documents required to apply for the D2 Visa: Checklist

  • Business plan

  • Proof of registered address

  • Valid passport

  • Passport photos

  • Comprehensive health insurance

  • Proof of good standing

  • Clean criminal record