What’s suddenly luring Brexit-hit Britons? Estonia’s digital citizenship for anyone | ZDNet

Interesting – residence-free business facilitation status:

The concept of Estonian e-residency emerged two years ago as a transnational digital identity, available to anyone in the world interested in administering a location-independent business online.

Applicants for e-residency are fingerprinted and background-checked by the Estonian state. Once approved, the new e-resident is issued an electronic ID card which, in combination with a four-digit pin, can be used for secure digital identification.

E-resident entrepreneurs and freelancers can open and run location-independent businesses online, apply for a bank account and conduct e-banking, get access to international payment service providers, declare taxes, sign all relevant documents and contracts remotely with the same legal status as handwritten ones, and gain easier access to EU markets.

At the same time e-residency does not confer citizenship, tax residency, residence or right of entry to Estonia or to the EU.

In the beginning of August, Estonian e-residency had altogether 12,480 applicants, with 568, or a little less than five percent from the UK.

Korjus believes that the interest will grow in time, especially when the Brexit processes approach their final stages.

 With crowds of new e-citizens and hundreds of new companies, Estonia’s e-residency project has exceeded expectations in its first year.

“It all depends on what specific decisions and agreements are made as to the results of the referendum. Today there are still a lot of loose ends. We believe that e-residency will become the main tool for the British to continue their businesses in the EU. It’s wise for an international company to keep at least one body in the EU, and Estonian e-residency is the cheapest and most convenient way to do it,” he says.

Source: What’s suddenly luring Brexit-hit Britons? Estonia’s digital citizenship for anyone | ZDNet

About Andrew
Andrew blogs and tweets public policy issues, particularly the relationship between the political and bureaucratic levels, citizenship and multiculturalism. His latest book, Policy Arrogance or Innocent Bias, recounts his experience as a senior public servant in this area.

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