Benefits of the EB-5 Program for Project Developers and Investors

We are going to discuss the many reasons why the EB-5 program is growing in popularity. EB-5 financing is also an increasingly attractive option for project developers.

What is the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program?

The EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program is a United States visa program that allows foreign nationals to obtain permanent residency, also known as a Green Card, by investing in new commercial enterprises in the U.S. The program was created in 1990 to stimulate the U.S. economy through job creation and capital investment by foreign investors.

To qualify for the program, an individual must invest a minimum of $1.05 million in a new commercial enterprise (NCE), or $800,000 in an NCE located in a designated targeted employment area (TEA). The investment must create at least 10 full-time jobs for U.S. workers within two years of the investor’s admission to the U.S. as a conditional permanent resident.

Successful applicants and their qualifying immediate family members are granted conditional permanent residency for a period of two years. After the two-year period, the investor must demonstrate that the required job creation and investment have been met before they are granted permanent residency.

Investor Benefits of the EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act 2022

The EB-5 program is subject to a limited number of visas issued to foreign countries each year, and is administered by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Due to the cap on the number of visas available, and the established popularity of the EB-5 visa program, some high-volume countries can experience long waiting periods, and even years-long backlogs.

In addition, the EB-5 visa process experienced some hesitation following the lapse of the EB-5 Regional Center Program. (This is the most popular investment option for EB-5 visa applicants.) However, the EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act of 2022 (RIA) renewed the program. It has also renewed public interest due to the myriad of new protections and oversight, making the process safer and more efficient for foreign investors.

Set Aside Visa Categories

The new RIA legislation places strong incentives on rural developments by introducing three visa set-aside categories: rural TEA projects, high-unemployment TEA projects, and infrastructure projects.

Investors who invest in any of these categories before the annual set-aside visa supply is exhausted will qualify for a reserved visa, regardless of their country’s EB-5 application backlog, and will not be subject to cutoff dates. Additionally, they will receive priority processing from USCIS.

Foreign investors who qualify in any of these three categories are likely to immigrate to the United States much faster than other EB-5 investment applicants because their visas will be drawn from the reserved pool, rather than from the allocation of their country of origin.

This implies that investing in a rural TEA is the most cost-effective and efficient way to acquire a Green Card through the EB-5 visa program.

Stronger Regulations

As part of its new security measures, the RIA now requires regional centers to provide investors with audited financial statements or reports.

Another crucial requirement is the use of third-party or independent fund administrators, who play a vital role in ensuring transparency by preparing financial documents, monitoring assets, enforcing compliance checks, and acting as a liaison between the fund and investors. This best practice not only provides legal assurances but also helps avoid project delays and streamlines the immigration process for EB-5 investors.

By implementing these measures, the RIA aims to raise the standard of responsibility among regional centers participating in the immigrant investor program. It provides foreign investors with an additional layer of safeguards against innocent mistakes or predatory practices.

Benefits of EB-5 Financing for U.S. Project Developers

The RIA’s multiple benefits have increased interest in the EB-5 program, meaning that more foreign investors are available to developers looking for project funding. Here are some of the benefits to developers considering EB-5 foreign capital investment for their projects.

Access to Low-Cost Capital

One of the main advantages of EB-5 financing is that it provides access to low-cost capital. EB-5 investors are required to invest a minimum of $800,000 in a qualifying rural TEA commercial project. Additionally, the interest rates associated with EB-5 financing are often lower than those associated with traditional financing options, which can result in significant cost savings for developers.

Alternative to Traditional Financing Options

EB-5 financing is also an enticing alternative to traditional financing options for developers. Traditional financing options, such as bank loans, require developers to provide collateral and hold a qualifying credit score. In addition, the approval process for traditional financing options can be lengthy and complex. In contrast, EB-5 financing does not require collateral, and the approval process is relatively straightforward.


Another advantage of EB-5 financing is that it is a flexible financing option that can be tailored to the specific needs of a project. Unlike traditional financing options, which often come with strict requirements and restrictions for its use, EB-5 financing can be structured in a way that meets the unique needs of a project. For example, developers can use EB-5 financing to fund specific aspects of a project, such as land acquisition, construction, or marketing.

Job Creation Requirements

EB-5 financing requires developers to create or preserve at least ten full-time jobs for U.S. workers per EB-5 investor. This requirement can be beneficial for developers, as it ensures that the project is creating local jobs and contributing to the local economy. This built-in requirement can help developers meet local regulatory requirements, which can be a factor in the approval process for the project, and also help further entice local investors to get involved.

Increased Potential for Additional Financing

In some cases, developers may be able to secure additional financing from more traditional sources after they have secured proof of EB-5 financing. This could provide developers with the additional capital they may need to complete their projects.

How to Get Started

Like with any investment, it’s always wise to do some due diligence on your options. It’s highly recommended that you speak with an experienced immigration attorney to further understand the EB-5 visa process, as an investor or developer.

EB5AN is proud to offer low-risk projects as part of our participation in the regional center program. If you’d like to learn more about our available projects, or are interested in taking advantage of our free consultation services, we look forward to hearing from you.