The EB-5 program is now sold out for the first time in its 24-year history, but new slots will open on October 1.
Locally, Jeff Berkowitz is hoping to use the program as a funding source for SkyRise Miami.
The program allows foreigners to obtain the right to live in the U.S. by investing at least $1M (or $500,000 in depressed areas). It is limited to 10,000 applicants per fiscal year.
By law, no country is permitted to fill more than 7 percent of slots, however the feds have allowed Chinese immigrants to take over unused slots from other countries. About 85% of the visas are now going to wealthy Chinese.
There is currently a backlog of over 10,000 applications, and it could take over 2 years for the government to process them. The feds are supposed to be screening for dirty money, but the denial rate is low for the program.