Ireland’s Innovation Economy – a world leader in innovation and research

When it comes to immigration, it’s important to consider the future of the country you are moving to and the opportunities it can offer you and your family. In a healthy ecosystem, new immigrants and their offspring can benefit from economic growth and social protection, while the nation can take advantage of the increased output and productivity that immigrants bring, both in the short- and medium-term.

Ireland’s future is bright in many respects, and it offers ample opportunities for immigrants and their children, particularly as it seeks to pivot to an Innovation Economy.

The Innovation Economy is an economic theory that has been gaining traction among business leaders and scholars in recent years and is based on the idea of entrepreneurship and that individuals, institutions and technological change drive economic growth.

Innovation is key to maintaining Ireland’s competitiveness in global markets. The world’s geopolitical, social, environmental, economic and technological challenges, and particularly the decision of the United Kingdom to leave the European Union, have forced Ireland to be more active in promoting its interests and finding new markets and opportunities to deepen and renew relationships and alliances, both in Europe and beyond.

A number of initiatives have been introduced by the Government to encourage Ireland to become an innovative and internationally competitive enterprise base for growing employment, sales and exports.

Global Ireland 2025

▲ Taoiseach launches Global Ireland: Ireland’s Global Footprint to 2025. Image source: merrionstreet.ie

Global Ireland 2025 is the Government’s ambitious strategy for doubling the scope and impact of Ireland’s global footprint. Its aims are manifold, seeking to diversify and grow Ireland’s exports and encourage inward investment and tourism, particularly in response to the challenges posed by the UK’s departure from the EU. There is also a desire to strengthen Ireland’s engagement with its 70 million-strong diaspora, to bring Irish culture to the wider world; and to support Ireland’s foreign policy objectives.

Building strong connectivity with important major cities around the globe is key. The Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport, alongside Tourism Ireland, are working closely with airports and airlines to actively pursue routes of strategic importance. While decisions on direct flights are largely driven by commercial considerations, Ireland is seeking to encourage direct links with a number of regions, thereby maximising the potential for increased tourism and trade from those locations. The first-ever direct commercial flights between the Asia-Pacific region and Ireland are now in operation, with scheduled flights from Dublin to Beijing and Hong Kong.

ireland airline

Under the Global Ireland 2025 Initiative, Ireland’s target is for 15% of its student population to be international students. Expanding the Government of Ireland Scholarship scheme; increasing in-country promotion of Ireland in new and emerging markets (such as Vietnam, Thailand, South Korea, Africa and South America); expanding the Academic Mobility Fund; and achieving greater impact in terms of international research collaborations and partnerships are some of the ways in which it hopes to achieve this goal.

One of the Global Ireland 2025 strategies worth highlighting is The Creative Ireland Programme, which was established in 2017. It aims to deliver a compelling proposition for Ireland, based on its culture and creativity, to enhance its international reputation and increase its influence in the world. The programme is built around key themes: Creative Youth, Creative Communities, Creative Places and Creative Nation.

Ireland’s Industry 4.0 Strategy

▲ Image credit Codico Coding and Marketing Solutions

Through the Industry 4.0 Strategy, the Government is responding to the transformation resulting from the advance of digital technology with a plan to help ensure that by 2025 Ireland will be at the forefront of the fourth industrial revolution and Industry 4.0 adoption.

The term ‘Industry 4.0’ refers to the convergence of information communication technologies (ICT), which include cloud computing, Internet of Things (IoT), high-performing computing, machine learning, big data and analytics, robotics and digital fabrication, to enable the ubiquitous digital connection of machines, workpieces and IT systems.

From a macroeconomic perspective, Industry 4.0 offers the potential for significant economic growth, with estimates that digitalisation of manufacturing could add €110 billion per year to Europe’s industry base. For Ireland, it is estimated that there will be positive workforce growth in the manufacturing sector through the adoption of digital technologies between 2019 and 2023.

As process innovation built on digital technologies can lead to more efficient and flexible production processes with increased resource efficiency, Industry 4.0 adoption should also contribute to the climate action agenda set out in Ireland’s Climate Action Plan 2019, while also benefiting industries such as Pharmaceuticals and Chemicals, Food and Drinks, Computer and Electronics and Engineering.

Development Within Ireland

Steps are also being taken for internal improvement in Ireland, from the government to education sectors, with a number of initiatives to support social and economic growth:

Government

▲ Image credit Eolas Magazine

Project Ireland 2040 Project

This is the Government’s initiative to make Ireland a better country for all of its people. It is expected that by 2040, there will be an additional one million people living in Ireland (currently it has a population of around 5 million), which will put pressure on infrastructure and services: more people will be travelling to work, school and universities, more buildings will be required to accommodate them, clean water will be needed for homes, farms and industry, and more and better care facilities will be necessary for the elderly. Project Ireland 2040 therefore consists of a National Planning Framework, which sets out a spatial strategy to accommodate these demographic changes.

The initiative seeks to achieve ten strategic outcomes, one of which is to have a strong economy, supported by Enterprise, Innovation and Skills.

Ireland has been very successful in attracting major foreign investment, and generating high quality, large-scale employment. While aiming to retain its competitiveness in mobile international investment, it will now also give equal priority to its local enterprise economy. The focus will be on boosting regional growth potential, increasing research, development and innovation, and investing in higher education and further education and training. A new €500m Disruptive Technologies Innovation Fund will drive collaboration between the research, education and enterprise sectors.

Future Jobs Ireland

Future Jobs Ireland seeks to put the country’s economy in a better place to withstand shocks, as and when they appear. It involves a deliberate policy shift to increase quality jobs that allow for better living standards, but also sustainable jobs, which will be less vulnerable. The strategy will focus on five pillars: embracing innovation and technological change; improving SME productivity; enhancing skills and developing and attracting talent; increasing participation in the labour force; and transitioning to a low carbon economy.

Education and Universities

Education, government initiatives and economic development are all closely linked. The Irish Government sees education as strategically interlinked with national planning and has successfully developed programmes with schools and universities at all levels to establish Ireland as an international base for technology, science and financial services.

Trinity College Dublin – Trinity encourages an entrepreneurial spirit, providing incubation programmes for student-led companies, and has been named Europe’s leading university two years in a row for producing venture-backed entrepreneurs. Its programmes support early-stage start-ups and entrepreneurs by offering them the opportunity to participate in its accelerator programmes and providing funding, co-working space on campus, access to expert mentors, and a structured programme of workshops and fireside chats.

Dublin has an extraordinary cluster of technology and life science companies. Image credit Trinity College Dublin

Technological University Dublin and CeADAR – There is a major collaborative project across Europe to design a new Master’s programme in Artificial Intelligence that addresses human and ethical issues around the topic. The total cost is expected to be €3million and the project is to be delivered at universities in Ireland, The Netherlands, Italy and Hungary. Ireland is front and centre of the initiative thanks to Technological University Dublin and CeADAR, Ireland’s national centre for Applied Data Analytics & AI based at University College Dublin.

Company Movement

Ireland is becoming an international tech and innovation hub – Dublin ranks the third best European ‘tech city of the future’ – with companies from the US, UK and China, among many others, moving to Europe’s ‘Silicon Valley’, which serves as a gateway to the European market. MedTech, FinTech and DataTech are booming, which provides strong economic growth and increases Ireland’s appeal.

Following the use of Ireland as a data centre and operations hub by major technology companies including Amazon, Facebook and Alphabet Inc, TikTok, which is owned by China’s ByteDance, plans to open its first European data centre in Ireland with an investment of about €420 million euros. It will also open a new cybersecurity centre there as part of its efforts to “stay ahead of next-generation security threats”.

Additionally, 12 players in the Irish insurance sector joined forces to promote the country as an EU hub for the growing InsurTech industry, including AA Ireland, AXA, ALD Re, Allianz, Greenlight Re, Insurance Ireland, Irish Life, Laya Healthcare, New Ireland Assurance, Unum, SCOR and William Fry.

Other tech applications include Google and Dublin City Council’s “Air View Dublin” innovative partnership. This will see Google’s Street View car take to the streets of Dublin to measure air quality across the city.

Fun facts

  • Ireland ranks number one worldwide for immunology
  • Ireland ranks number one worldwide for animal and dairy science
  • Ireland ranks number two worldwide for nanotechnology and agricultural science
  • Ireland ranks number two worldwide for molecular biology and genetics

Summary

The future is bright for Ireland. A global tech hub in its own right, it continues to attract global talent, companies, entrepreneurs and investors, thereby providing employment and sustainable growth in the Irish economy.

Immigrating to Ireland is an optimal option for the next generation as a place for young talent to flourish. Contact us now to obtain Irish residency for you and your family.

Bartra Wealth Advisors opens new office in Shanghai

Bartra Wealth Advisors celebrated the grand opening of a new office in Shanghai on 27 August with a well-attended ribbon-cutting ceremony.

The new office, located in Wheelock Square, the newest and tallest building in Puxi, Shanghai, exudes a certain Irish charm in its chic aesthetics, reflecting the enchanting nation at the core of Bartra Wealth Advisors’ business.

At the ceremony, James Hartshorn, CEO and Co-founder of Bartra Wealth Advisors, made a speech expressing his heartfelt gratitude to clients and partners for their ongoing support and reviewing the achievements of Bartra over the last five years.

“Looking back, Bartra has always provided investors with the best projects in the market with minimal risks. We also established a local landing team in Ireland to provide one-stop landing services. Bartra Wealth Advisors will not forget why we started. Going forward, we will continue to provide first-class investment projects and services and work hard to create a better life for our customers.”

In attendance at the event was Ms Wendy Dorman-Smith, Consul General of Ireland in Shanghai (second from right), who cut the ribbon to mark the opening of the new office alongside James Hartshorn, Sales Director Ian Che, and Head of Operations Daniel Hinds.

Richard Barrett, Founder of Bartra Group; Peter Yang, representative of the Department of Education of Ireland; Kathy Zhai, Chief Admissions Officer of Trinity College Dublin; and Robin Xie, founder of Ambright Education Group, among other guests, recorded and sent virtual blessings in celebration of the opening.

Chinese media were also in attendance at the opening ceremony and James Hartshorn was interviewed by Yicai, Phoenix New Media and iQiyi.

In addition, seasoned whiskey sommeliers from Jameson, a renowned spirits brand in Ireland, presented a unique whiskey tasting session in the new space for guests, showcasing the various flavours of whiskey including dried bananas, fresh bananas, figs and sweet osmanthus.

Ireland has always been recognised as a global leader in the education sector, but its buoyant economic growth in the past seven years has also attracted worldwide attention. Ireland was the only EU member state that maintained economic growth amid the global pandemic in 2020. Known as the Silicon Valley of Europe, it is home to the European headquarters of many tech giants including Facebook, Apple and Google. It also serves as a gateway to the European market for Chinese companies such as Huawei and ByteDance (TikTok’s owner), which recently established a presence in Ireland.

As a subsidiary of Ireland’s leading property developer Bartra Group, Bartra Wealth Advisors specialises in offering streamlined, end-to-end Irish investment immigration services. With our extensive experience and expertise in real estate and investment, we provide reliable and safe investment options for HNW families considering immigrating to Ireland.

5-year growth journey

In Ireland, solving the shortage of social housing and nursing homes is the country’s top priority. With an abundance of experience and expertise in real estate and investment, Bartra offers high-quality social housing and nursing home IIP projects for families who want to immigrate to Ireland.

Bartra has secured a large number of lots in Dublin in recent years. Three nursing homes have been completed and begun operation, including Loughshinny, Beaumont, Ireland’s largest private nursing home, and Northwood, which is located in the heart of the city, with a standard of care that recognises residents’ needs for privacy, independence and choice dignity.

Bartra Group is committed to making people’s lives better and hopes to improve the lives of local people through such social infrastructure projects. Meanwhile, Bartra also provides investors with opportunities to directly invest in high-quality nursing homes and social housing projects, and to achieve “one person invests, the whole family obtains EU residency”. To date, Bartra has helped more than 350 families immigrate to Ireland and has maintained a 100% approval rate and 100% renewal rate. In the future, we will continue to endeavour to create a better future for our customers.

Immigration to Ireland records a sharp rise – Bartra raised HK$200 million from Immigrant Investor Programme since start of 2021

Hong Kong, 1 September 2021 – Bartra Wealth Advisors, a subsidiary of Ireland’s leading real estate developer Bartra Group and the first Irish developer providing direct Irish immigration investment advisory in Hong Kong, participated in the 2nd International Immigration and Property Expo from 28-29 August 2021. Over 16,000 visitors attended the expo, an increase of approximately 40% compared to the last event in March this year, representing a significant rise in the public’s interest in immigration. A number of talks and briefing sessions were held in the exhibition to introduce the ways and advantages of investment immigration to Ireland to the public. During the expo, Bartra received onsite enquiries from more than 200 clients.

This year, Bartra has processed approximately 20 applications for Ireland’s Immigrant Investor Programme (IIP), amounting to a total investment of about HK$200 million. Among them, 4 applicants originally intended to immigrate to the UK through the BN(O) scheme, but finally decided to apply for Ireland’s IIP instead. Jeffrey Ling, Bartra Wealth Advisors Regional Director, said, “Some clients applied for Ireland’s IIP to obtain a safety net when applying for immigration to the UK through the BN(O) scheme. It was mainly because Ireland is close to the UK (about an hour flight) and it is an English-speaking country. Irish citizens not only can access the UK under the Common Travel Area (CTA) Agreement, they can also access 27 European Union countries as its member state. Moreover, due to the high residing flexibility in Ireland’s IIP scheme, Ireland’s IIP applicants are only required to enter the country once and stay for one day every year to retain their PR status and the right to abode.”

Currently, applicants to the BN(O) scheme are not entitled to Public Funds, they are also not able to fully access the public health and educational systems in the UK. Moreover, a large number of commercial and financial institutions have moved their European headquarters out of the UK after Brexit, including Barclays and HSBC Holdings Plc., increasing uncertainties for the employment prospects for applicants to the UK. Ireland, as a member state of the European Union, appeals to clients who also applied to Ireland’s IIP for protection. In addition, since the HKSAR government has ceased to recognize the BN(O) passport as a valid travel document and identity proof since January 2021, Hong Kong citizens are concerned that they may not be able to apply for the early withdrawal from the Mandatory Provident Fund (MPF) scheme through their BN(O) passports or the related visa applications.

Bartra has noticed that the desire of Hong Kong families to emigrate has increased sharply lately, and today Ireland is becoming one of the most popular destinations for immigration. In the first half of 2021, the monthly average search volume of “IrishImmigration” in Chinese reached approximately 1,000 searches. Furthermore, Bartra’s 20 successful applications to Ireland’s IIP this year, represents a significant increase from the 50 cases in the 17-month period from August 2019 to the end of 2020. Traditionally most Hong Kong emigrants have chosen English-speaking countries in Europe and North America as their destinations, explaining the considerable appeal of immigration to Ireland to Hong Kong people where English is the spoken language of the majority as well as the dominant business language.

Immigration to Ireland through the IIP is fast tracked and flexible. It takes about 6 months for approval. Applicants are only required to reside one day per year in Ireland to maintain their residency; in other words, they can obtain a foreign residency without relocating and freely decide when to become a tax resident. In addition, Ireland is the only English-speaking country in the European Union, which presents fewer language barriers for Hong Kong emigrants. The accompanying children of IIP applicants to Ireland can also enjoy Ireland’s free education and free choice of schools. The Irish education system is among the top globally, ranking seventh in the world. In addition, Hong Kong families are often pleasantly surprised when they discover Ireland is part of the Common Travel Area (CTA), which allows Irish Citizens to live and work in the United Kingdom’

Bartra commands unrivalled creditability in Irish immigration consultancy services. This year marks the fifth anniversary of Bartra’s establishment in Asia. The offices of Bartra in the Asian region are located in Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Hong Kong and Vietnam – together they have processed more than 350 successful cases. Apart from serving local clients, Bartra also serves clients from Taiwan, India, Singapore, the Philippines, Macau, the United States, the UK, and the United Arab Emirates, proving its wealth of experience.

The Social Housing and Nursing Home projects Bartra offers to IIP clients for obtaining permanent residency in Ireland can be achieved in three or five years (4% flat annual interest rate for the 5-year option), and both guarantee 100% investment capital protection. They each have an approval and renewal rate of 100%. Apart from cash, for asset value proof, IIP applicants can use stocks, funds, cash value of insurance policies, properties, or even parking spaces, valuable paintings or collectables etc. Applicants can also choose to use wealth management services to cash out for their investment into IIP.  Some clients will seek advice from financial services to pledge/refinance their assets to fund investment immigration in the current low-interest environment so as to obtain residency without disposing their existing investments.

bartra team photo

The professional team of Bartra Wealth Advisors provided onsite Irish immigration consulting services at the “2nd International Immigration and Property Expo”.

immi expo talk

Bartra Wealth Advisors recently held small seminars on Irish immigration in the “2nd Hong Kong International Immigration and Property Expo” at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, which was well received by the public.

About Bartra Wealth Advisors

Bartra Wealth Advisors (Bartra) is a subsidiary company of Ireland’s most successful real estate developer Bartra Group, specialising in providing independent Irish immigration investment advisory services. With well-established business, extensive Irish immigration experience, expertise in the investment field, professional landing teams and strong business network support, Bartra Group has successfully carried out a significant number of social housing and nursing home IIP (Immigrant Investor Programme) projects and has helped hundreds of families successfully immigrate to Ireland.

Bartra Wealth Advisors prides itself on delivering streamlined, in-group, end-to-end services. Its unique business model supports clients throughout their investment and immigration journey, from immigration advisory and government backed IIP projects through to exit executions. It maintains a 100% application approval rate and a 100% renewal rate.

Bartra Insight

Practical tips on Irish tax to get your finances in order before moving to Ireland

Compared to many English-speaking countries, Ireland has comparatively favourable tax regimes for immigrants, but the key to tax efficiency is always good planning to ensure your finances are in order before you arrive in the country.

In our previous blog Tax 101 – a simple tax guide for immigrants to Ireland, we went through the major Irish taxes that IIP investors should be aware of. To help you further understand the tax implications that might accompany a move to Ireland, our Marketing Director, Jay Cheung, spoke to Gabriel Ho, Director of People Services at KPMG for the latest episode of Immigration Insights with Bartra Wealth Advisors. Watch the video for insights on tax-related considerations and actions to take before moving to Ireland.

Residence for Tax Purposes

“As a starting point, consider the amount of time you anticipate spending in Ireland and plan your finances before moving to Ireland. This can significantly impact your Ireland tax position and tax liabilities,” says Gabriel.

The tax liability of an individual in Ireland is determined by whether they are resident in the country and whether they are domiciled in Ireland. According to the Revenue Commissioners, the Irish Tax and Customs agency, your tax residence status depends on the number of days you are present in Ireland during a tax year (the period from 1 January to 31 December). You are resident in Ireland for tax purposes if you are in Ireland for a total of:

  • 183 days or more in a tax year, or
  • 280 days or more in Ireland over two consecutive tax years, with a minimum of 30 days in each year

Tax residence is taken into account for several taxes including income tax, inheritance tax and capital gains tax (CGT). It is worth noting that you will become ordinarily resident if you have been resident in Ireland for 3 consecutive tax years. An individual who is ordinarily resident in Ireland is liable to Irish taxes regardless of the number of days spent in Ireland, until being non-resident for another 3 consecutive tax years.

The Irish Immigrant Investor Programme (IIP) offers extensive flexibility to its investors as the minimum stay is only one day per year. Investors can decide whether to become a tax resident in Ireland depending on their situation.

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Remittance Basis

The remittance basis of tax is advantageous to people coming into Ireland if non-domiciled. If not an Irish national, then any investment income is only taxable if you bring it into Ireland.

The remittance basis is very attractive in bringing people to Ireland, as for most IIP applicants, their income is in overseas investments. There are very few countries that offer this favourable tax treatment.

It is important to understand what constitutes an Irish source of income and what is not an Irish source of income. For instance, investors might bring their income into Ireland before they arrive, so-called ‘clean capital’ that is income earned while not resident in Ireland. This money has generally already been taxed overseas and is not from an Irish source. “In general, if you would like to dispose of assets before you move, we suggest you do so at least one year before becoming tax residents in Ireland. The gain should not be subject to Ireland tax even if you remit the proceeds to Ireland at a later time,” says Gabriel.

For example, if an individual who will move to and become tax resident in Ireland in 2022 disposes assets on or before 31 December 2021, the gain should not be subject to Ireland tax even if they remit the proceeds to their Ireland bank account in 2021 or later. If you earn overseas investment income while resident in Ireland, as long as you do not bring the funds into Ireland then Irish Revenue will not seek to tax it.

There is also the Special Assignee Relief Programme (SARP), which is a tax incentive used to attract talent from outside Ireland to work in Ireland. If a person meets the conditions of SARP they enjoy a preferential tax rate on employment income where the income tax rate that applies is 28%.

Tax family

Planning Ahead

It is crucial to plan early to achieve the best tax benefits. Try to create a clear list of your assets and investment portfolio that you disclose to your financial or tax advisor in order to assess whether it will be considered clean capital and if it is possible to remit it to Ireland without incurring any additional Irish taxes.

It is also important to document the income that is brought into Ireland and have any backup information to hand in the event of any enquiries from Irish Revenue. By not planning correctly regarding the source of the income you bring into Ireland or the timing of when you bring in this income you may become liable to additional taxes or scrutiny from Irish Revenue.

Gabriel says individuals may also consider having separate bank accounts in Ireland. “For example, one account for holding funds remitted to Ireland which should not be subject to tax, and another account for holding funds remitted to Ireland which may be subject to tax. This should help ring-fence income and gains which should not be subject to Ireland tax.”

Summary

Tax implication varies from family to family, and it is affected by a myriad of factors. However, IIP’s flexibility allows plenty of time for investors to properly plan their finances before relocating to Ireland. We hope that investors can mitigate unwanted tax spending after understanding how the Irish tax regime works.

Bartra Wealth Advisors prides itself on delivering streamlined, end-to-end services. Our unique business model supports clients throughout their investment and immigration journey, from immigration advisory and government-backed IIP projects through to exit executions. Contact us if you have any questions regarding Ireland’s tax regime or the IIP.

Disclaimer: Information correct as of 27 August 2021. Bartra Wealth Advisors and its affiliates provide individualised services to immigration. All information provided to investors and clients is with such purpose in mind. Should investors have any enquiries about any specific legal, tax or financial planning matter relating to their personal circumstances, Bartra Wealth Advisors recommends that investors seek independent professional advice. Although every care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information and contents of the materials, which are obtained from sources believed to be reliable, Bartra Wealth Advisors does not represent, warrant or guarantee the accuracy, completeness, timeliness, reliability or suitability of the information or contents for any particular purpose.