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Investment project under the EB-5 Immigration Program for Indian Investors

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27th September 2018, Mumbai: New York State Empire Outlet Fund I, LLC, organized by the owners of the Colorado Regional Center (CRC), a US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) approved Regional Center for the EB-5 Program, has recently announced its investment project –The Empire Outlets – New York City’s first and only retail outlet center, inviting aspiring Indian nationals to invest and obtain permanent residency in the US for self and immediate family.

Approved by the USCIS and with Goldman Sachs as a primary investor, the project has I-924 Exemplar Approval and I-526 approvals. Located on the Staten Island, the project developed by the reputed BFC Partners, in association with NYSEOF, CRC and New York State Regional Center (NYSRC), is bearing completion and is set to open for business by fall of 2018.

The EB-5 Immigration Investor Program:

The EB-5 Visa has been in the news recently for its rising popularity as an alternate visa for nationals seeking U.S Citizenship through Investment. While the EB-5 has been praised as well as criticised equally, it is yet to be completely understood by aspiring investors.

Simply put, the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program offers foreign nationals an opportunity to invest in a qualifying project in the US and to relocate with their spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 years. They can enjoy the benefits of permanent residency and can work, attend school, or retire anywhere in the U.S.In turn, the U.S. economy benefits through capital support for important projects while new avenues for high paying American jobs are created.

Typically, interested investors are required to make a minimum investment of USD 500,000 for a project, located in a Targeted Employment Area (TEA) or USD 1,000,000 million for a project not located in a TEA. While the investor has a choice to invest individually or work with a larger pool of investors via the USCIS approved regional centers, they need to fulfill the mandate of creating and preserving 10 direct, permanent full-time jobs for qualified American workers. If they invest through a Regional Center they need to create 10 direct or indirect jobs. If they invest individually they need to create 10 direct jobs.

Highlighting the unique investment advantage in the Empire Outlet project for EB-5 visa aspirants in India, Mr. Deepesh Deshmukh, Project Facilitator for India, said, “The Empire Outlet Project is a first of its kind Outlet Mall in New York and its grand opening ahead of the holiday season this year, is highly anticipated. While this translates as a short investment window for Indian Investors, it also ensures a reduced time frame of processing of permanent residency application. With the recent uncertainty over the investment value slabs being raised from USD 500,000 for TEA and USD 1,000,000 for non-TEA (an EB-5 raise is suggested to go to close to $1M for TEA and $1.8M for non-TEA per draft legislation), the Empire Outlet project offers Indian investors seeking immediate participation, an opportunity to enjoy the current rates, with the assured benefit of accelerated permanent residency.”

Empire Outlet – Project highlights:

Located strategically adjacent to the St. George Ferry Terminal on the Northern Shore of Staten Island, the Empire Outlet Mall is designed to house over 100 designer brands across 340,000 Sq. Ft. Retail area and multiple F&B brands across a 40,000 Sq. Ft Deck, with unique views of Manhattan, making it an upmarket shopping and dining destination of choice for millions of New Yorkers and tourists when it opens for business in the fall of 2018. Some key retail brands already on board with the project include H&M, Banana Republic, Nordstrom Rack, Gap Factory, Brook Brothers and Columbia Sporting Goods.

Speaking about the investment highlights for EB-5 visa applicants, Ms. Jennifer Richmond, VP, Business Development, Colorado Regional Center, highlights“We at NYSEOF and CRC understand the apprehensions and dilemma of Indian investors seeking permanent residency in the US through the EB-5 program. Our proven expertise and meticulous scrutiny of projects address

risk issues and create a path for investors to reap the EB-5 benefits of their investment while making the U.S their new home. The Empire Outlet is one of our most ambitious investment projects, undertaken in association with the EB-5 New York State, and we are excited to bring this to the Indian investors. With solid capital backing from Government and Private Investors, the project is nearing completion and has already generated approximately 3,300 jobs (we just received an updated jobs report!). We have also received our I-924 approval and over 80 I-526 petitions have already been approved. India has been an enthusiastic market for the EB-5 Immigrant investment program over the past few years and we look forward to an equally exciting response to our latest project from India.”

The Empire Outlet enjoys strong financial backing by investors like Goldman Sachs – the largest equity investor with 11% equity and from the New York state and the New York City government,who have pledged over USD 90 Million in the project through loans and grants.

NYSEOFAdvantage:

NYSEOF, owned by the principals of CRC, facilitates immigrants wishing to obtain permanent residency in the U.S through the EB-5 Immigration Investors program. As a USCIS approved regional center, CRC identifies and nominates selected projects to investors, assisting aspirants to make qualified investments and submit relevant documents to USCIS, which has translated to the creation of NYSEOF to facilitate the Empire Outlets project. A partnership was created with the EB-5 New York State regional center which ensures benefits to the project. (Actually the lawyers do this, CRC – or any Regional Center – is not involved in the filing of applications. They must have a trusted immigration attorney to help them with this process)

Some of the unique benefits that investors can avail by partnering with the Regional Center include:

– An opportunity to invest in a credible, USCIS approved the project, with well-defined timelines, supported by multiple investors

– Again, while we do support our investors, the processing of the green card is through their chosen immigration attorney Negligible involvement in managing the day to day functioning of the project as the investments are handled by NYSEOF and are often be pooled with multiple investors

– Achieve the requisite criteria of creating 10 full-time American Jobs We don’t have a proprietary methodology, but our economists do use the RIMS II analysis in establishing the job count, which is a rigorous analysis USCIS has already accepted and approved for Empire Outlets

– Pathway to approval for permanent residency with NYSEOF’s documented evidence of ‘indirect’ and ‘direct’ jobs being counted for each participating EB-5 investor

– Freedom of travel anywhere in the US and not be restricted to the area of the invested project

– Access to residency benefits, including educational, healthcare and lifestyle opportunities in the US (including residency benefits for dependent students)

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Vodafone Idea seeks Rs 35 per GB as minimum floor price

According to the source, Vodafone Idea wants minimum price of outgoing calls should be fixed at 6 paise per minute.

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Vodafone, Idea

New Delhi, Feb 27 : Vodafone Idea has sought fixing minimum tariffs for mobile data at Rs 35 per GB, which is about 7 time the current rate, and for calls at 6 paise per minute along with monthly charges from April 1, to help it pay statutory dues.

Struggling to clear adjusted gross revenue dues of Rs 53,000 crore to comply with a Supreme Court order, the loss-making telco has sought 18 years time to clear the dues, including a three-year moratorium on payment of interest and penalty, according to official sources.

In a letter to the Department of Telecommunications, the company said it wants minimum price of data should be fixed at Rs 35 per gigabyte and minimum monthly connection charge at Rs 50 from April 1, 2020. Current mobile internet prices are in the range of Rs 4-5 per GB.

According to the source, Vodafone Idea wants minimum price of outgoing calls should be fixed at 6 paise per minute.

The demand to raise call and internet rates from Vodafone Idea comes within three months of the company raising rates by up to 50 per cent.

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No impact of Delhi violence on investor confidence: Sitharaman

“But that shouldn’t cause worries, because FDI flows were steady and coming in good numbers while the forex is also doing very well,” she said.

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Nirmala Sitharaman

Guwahati, Feb 27: Claiming green shoots were visible in the Indian economy, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday denied any adverse impact on investor sentiments due to the Delhi violence and the ongoing anti-CAA protests in various parts of the country.

“The sentiments of foreign investors have not been dampened,” she told a media meet when asked whether investor confidence has taken a hit due to the agitation against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and the violence in the national capital that has left at least 37 dead and over 200 injured.

Referring to her experiences at the recent Ministerial Conference on International Taxes in Riyadh, she said: “Nowhere was there a concern on something happening in India. On the contrary, there were very prominent investors who said they are now even open to open up a representation office in India, which they don’t have till now.”

The minister said she in fact saw lot of interest on India’s announcement of a national infrastructure pipeline.

“There is interest in India. It continues. And there is more interest in India for investors,” she said.

On whether the Indian companies were apprehensive of a raw material scarcity due to the coronavirus outbreak in China and elsewhere, Sitharaman said she held a meeting with 20-23 industries before leaving for Saudi Arabia, but none of them expressed any anxiety on that count.

“They didn’t express any anxiety about raw material supply, nor did they express any anxiety about exports being disturbed.

“However, of course, some of them felt after two months if the situation did not move, as regards containing the virus, they may start having problems of raw material availability, for which we are trying to see how best we can help them,” Sitharaman said.

To a query on the sluggish economy, the minister said following concrete steps by the government and the Reserve Bank of India, the mood was gradually turning positive.

“There are green shoots visible. Many of them are sustained, even if one or two are weakening. We are very clear that they will also revive,” she said, adding there were monthly ups and owns of some indicators.

“But that shouldn’t cause worries, because FDI flows were steady and coming in good numbers while the forex is also doing very well,” she said.

The minister conceded that there was inflationary pressure when due to climate change issues, prices of crops like onions went up.

“But now, India has lifted ban on exports of onion. That shows there is sufficient quantity of onions in the market, and indicates inflationary pressures are coming down,” said Sitharaman.

“The mood is gradually changing. There is every positive sign,” she said.

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India’s Q3 GDP expected to inch-up above 4.5%

India Ratings and Research gave a forecast of 4.7 per cent for Q3 GDP.

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slowdown in global economic growth

New Delhi, Feb 27 : India’s third quarter 2019-20 GDP growth rate is expected to inch up on the back of rising inflation, along with a modest uptick in the momentum of services and industry.

Several economists polled by IANS said that GDP growth rate is seen in the range of 4.6-4.8 per cent for the third quarter from 4.5 per cent reported for the second quarter of the current fiscal.

Various indicators like air passenger traffic, railways’ freight revenue and commercial vehicles’ sales have shown improvement in Q3FY20 against weak performance in Q2FY20.

The macro-economic data point of the national income and the GDP will be released on Friday.

“We expect the GDP Q3 number to be 4.8 per cent. Since no major improvement was observed among leading indicators, market expectations remain subdued,” said Karan Mehrishi, Lead Economist at Acuite Ratings and Research.

“Generally, Q3 is one of the strongest quarters in a financial year because the inclusion of festive seasons sales and kharif harvest-driven rural consumption, this time, however, nothing noteworthy is foreseen.”

Besides, he pointed out that capacity utilisation levels have also fallen.

“Fresh capex looks unlikely and investments will be moderate driven by the public sector. We are however mindful of the inflation trajectory moving forward,” Mehrishi said.

India Ratings and Research gave a forecast of 4.7 per cent for Q3 GDP.

Edelweiss Securities’ Economist Madhavi Arora said: “We expect a marginal shallow pick up in 3Q, amid still-sluggish corporate earnings and weak industrial sector.”

“While government spending has been a respite for the services sector, its’ contribution to growth will also decline marginally. We expect 3Q GDP to print around 4.6-4.7 per cent.”

Meanwhile, ICRA expects the GDP and the gross value added (GVA) growth at basic prices to rise mildly to 4.7 per cent and 4.5 per cent, respectively, in Q3FY20, from 4.5 per cent and 4.3 per cent, respectively, in Q2FY20.

“Some industrial and service sectors displayed a pickup in YoY volume growth in Q3FY20 relative to the previous quarter, while the output of kharif crops displayed a mixed trend,” its principal economist Aditi Nayar said.

“Lower raw material costs, high growth of the government’s non-interest revenue expenditure and the stable profitability metrics revealed by the earnings of some banks would provide a cushion to the pace of economic growth,” she said.

However, the extent and duration of coronavirus outbreak would test the sustainability of the nascent upturn in growth in the ongoing quarter.

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