Central African Republic Court Rules New $60,000 Crypto-Investment Citizenship Program Unconstitutional

According to Reuters, the Constitutional Court of the Central African Republic (CAR) said on Monday that buying citizenship, e-residency and land using its government-backed Sango digital currency is unconstitutional because a nationality has no market value. Earlier in July, CAR unveiled its Sango crypto hub to attract global crypto talent and enthusiasts, drive Bitcoin (BTC) adoption, and implement new crypto regulatory frameworks. The Sango blockchain is built on top of the Bitcoin blockchain, similar to a layer 2 solution.

Part of the program includes a citizenship-by-investment program, where foreign nationals can effectively purchase CAR citizenship for $60,000 in crypto, with an equivalent amount of Sango tokens held as collateral and returned after five years. Similarly, e-Residence can be purchased for $6,000 with Sango tokens locked for three years. It is also possible to buy a 250 square meter piece of land in CAR for $10,000 with Sango tokens returned a decade later.

CAR says each Sango token will be partially backed by Bitcoin, which it adopted as legal tender in April. Each Sango token can be purchased for $0.10 during the early stages of its initial coin offering, with an entry price target of $0.45 in the final round. The total supply of the token is 210 million. So far, less than 20 million Sango tokens have been claimed, and authorities have extended the first round of sales for around five weeks.

Affluent investors typically enroll in investment-based second citizenship programs for business activities, tax mitigation, and ease of travel. The Central African Republic’s gross domestic product has steadily declined since peaking in the mid-1960s. Its current passport allows visa-free travel to 17 countries.