New investments of the direct kind in the EB-5 program (always a minor part of that operation) dropped from 37 in April to 23 in May, according to recently released visa statistics from the State Department.
On the other hand — and this does not reflect new investments as the 23 do — the department has started to clear up a long backlog of EB-5 regional center visa petitions, presumably related to the re-authorization of that program by Congress earlier in the spring. Many EB-5 regional center visas were put on hold until the congressional action.
Both the direct and the regional center sub-programs allow aliens (without other qualifications) to buy a family-sized set of green cards if they put a stipulated amount of money in a DHS-approved investment. The smaller part of the program, dealing with direct investments, has a permanent legislative authorization; the larger part, dealing with investments pooled by regional centers, has always had a temporary authorization; that ran out on June 30, 2021, and was not revived until about nine months later. For decades the required minimum investment was $500,000; Congress raised that to $800,000 earlier this year.
The new direct investment visas went to India (15), China (5), and Iran (3).
The regional center visas totaled 387 for the month; the leading nations were China (211), Taiwan (which is counted separately, 50), and India and Vietnam (33 each). The rest of the world accounted for 60 visas.