Research Article


DOI :10.26650/ppil.2023.43.1.1240913   IUP :10.26650/ppil.2023.43.1.1240913    Full Text (PDF)

Some Thoughts on the Principle of Effective Nationality and Citizenship Through Investment Programs

Didem Kayalı

The concept of citizenship refers to the legal bond between a state and individuals who constitute one of the essential elements (i.e., the population) of each state. Thus, each state has exclusive jurisdiction to determine who will be its nationals. On the other hand, this authority is acknowledged to not be unlimited, because states are the primary subjects of international law, and the status of citizenship as given by a state also leads to some important consequences in international law. Therefore, state-made citizenship regulations will be accepted by other states as long as they are consistent with international conventions, customary international law, and the generally recognized principles of law with regard to nationality. Granting citizenship through citizenship-by-investment programs is also under the exclusive The concept of citizenship refers to the legal bond between a state and individuals who constitute one of the essential elements (i.e., the population) of each state. Thus, each state has exclusive jurisdiction to determine who will be its nationals. On the other hand, this authority is acknowledged to not be unlimited, because states are the primary subjects of international law, and the status of citizenship as given by a state also leads to some important consequences in international law. Therefore, state-made citizenship regulations will be accepted by other states as long as they are consistent with international conventions, customary international law, and the generally recognized principles of law with regard to nationality. Granting citizenship through citizenship-by-investment programs is also under the exclusive

DOI :10.26650/ppil.2023.43.1.1240913   IUP :10.26650/ppil.2023.43.1.1240913    Full Text (PDF)

Etkili Vatandaşlık İlkesi ile Yatırım Yoluyla Vatandaşlık Programları Üzerine Bazı Düşünceler

Didem Kayalı

Vatandaşlık kavramı, devletin kurucu unsurlarından olan insan topluluğunu teşkil eden bireylerin devlet ile aralarındaki bağı ifade etmektedir. Bu nedenle her devletin, kimlerin kendi vatandaşı olacağını belirleme yetkisi bulunmaktadır. Ancak bu yetkinin sınırsız olmadığı kabul edilmektedir. Zira devletler, milletlerarası hukukun temel öznesidir ve devletlerin bahşettiği vatandaşlık statüsü milletlerarası hukukta da bazı önemli sonuçlar doğurmaktadır. Dolayısıyla, vatandaşlık konusunda devletlerin yaptıkları düzenlemeler, milletlerarası sözleşmeler, milletlerarası teamül ve vatandaşlıkla ilgili genel hukuk ilkeleri ile uyumlu oldukları ölçüde diğer devletlerce kabul edilecektir. Yatırım yoluyla vatandaşlık programları dâhilinde vatandaşlık verilmesi de devletlerin mahfuz yetkileri kapsamındadır. Peki diğer devletler bu yolla verilen bir vatandaşlığı tanımak zorunda mıdır? Bu konudaki değerlendirme hangi ilkeler esas alınarak yapılmalıdır? Nottebohm kararında vurgulanan etkili vatandaşlık ilkesi bu kapsamda dikkate alınmalı mıdır? Makalede bu sorular cevaplanmaya çalışılmıştır. Bunun için genel devlet teorisi ve milletlerarası hukuk bağlamında vatandaşlık kavramı ile Nottebohm kararının önemli noktaları ele alınmış, yetkili makam kararıyla vatandaşlığın kazanılmasından genel hatlarıyla bahsedilmiş, bu kapsamda istisnai bir yol olan yatırım yoluyla vatandaşlık uygulaması farklı ülke örnekleri çerçevesinde incelenmiştir. Yapılan incelemeler neticesinde, küreselleşmenin de etkisiyle göç hareketlerinin yoğunlaşmasına ve birden çok vatandaşlık durumlarının artmasına rağmen devlet-vatandaş ilişkisinin özünün aynı kaldığı görülmüştür. Dolayısıyla, kişi ile devlet arasında doğumdan sonra oluşan gerçek bir bağa dayanmaksızın sadece belli tutarlar karşılığında verilen vatandaşlığın, genel devlet teorisi çerçevesinde vatandaşlık kavramını tam olarak karşılamadığı ve milletlerarası hukuk bağlamında sorun yaratma potansiyeline sahip olduğu sonucuna varılmıştır.


EXTENDED ABSTRACT


According both to the general theory of state and international law, a state is a community formed by people and exercises permanent power within a specified territory. This definition introduces three essential components of a state: population, territory, and sovereignty. Therefore, the people living within a defined territory are indispensable to forming a state, and the concepts of citizenship and nationality refer to the legal bond between these people and the state to which they belong. Although the size and composition of a population and individual departures from it are irrelevant, the strength of the ties among the people and between the state and people have been acknowledged to be crucial. By acquiring state citizenship, a person undertakes certain responsibilities toward that state and enjoys certain rights that are not granted to non-citizens. Basically, citizens of a state owe allegiance to the state in return for protection.

Each state has exclusive jurisdiction to determine who its nationals will be. On the other hand, this authority has been acknowledged to not be unlimited, as states are the primary subjects of international law and the status of citizenship as given by states also have some important consequences in international law. Therefore, the citizenship regulations a state makes will be accepted by other states as long as they are consistent with international conventions, customary international law, and the principles of law as generally recognized with regard to nationality. Both the Convention on Certain Questions Relating to the Conflict of Nationality Laws (1930) and the European Convention on Nationality (1997) include similar provisions in this regard.

While numerous international conventions exist on nationality law, the rules of customary international law and the principles of law as generally recognized with regard to nationality are not that clear. However, the introduction of investment citizenship programs by which citizenship is granted only in exchange for money with no genuine link between the individual and the state has triggered some discussions regarding the essence of citizenship, the problems that may occur in international law, and thus the limits of the exclusive jurisdiction of states.

Upon examining the scholarly opinions regarding state theory and international law and remembering the reasoning behind the tribunal in the Nottebohm case (ICJ 1, 1955), one could argue that, apart from the obligations arising from international conventions, the main framework that would limit the jurisdiction of a state when granting citizenship is the principle of the prohibition of the abuse of rights. Therefore, determining the cases in which a state would be deemed to be abusively exercising its exclusive jurisdiction is important. According to some scholars, the abuse of rights occurs when a state exercises a right in a way that either hinders the enjoyment by other states of their own rights or, contrary to the purpose of that right, injures another state. On the other hand, some scholars have defined the concept without the requirement of injury and have instead argued the abuse of rights to occur when a right is exercised arbitrarily for an end that differs from that for which the right had been created.

In practice, international courts or arbitral tribunals determine whether an injury of a state has occurred as a result of another state granting citizenship. For example, acquisition of new citizenship may decrease the tax income of the state with which the individual currently holds citizenship. The loss of a state may reach significant amounts, especially when one state’s wealthy citizens systematically begin to acquire citizenship from another state and transfer their assets to that second state. In addition, the injury of a state may also occur when a financial crime is committed in that state by an individual who holds dual nationality. Because each citizen has the right to enter its homeland and the extradition of a citizen is restricted under international law, one can, after committing a financial crime, flee to the country whose nationality was acquired by means of an investment citizenship program.

When adopting the opinion that does not require injury for the abuse of rights to occur, the arbitrary exercise of exclusive jurisdiction may also create problems in international law. In order to be non-arbitrary, an actual connection between the state and an individual has been argued should exist in order to constitute a legal connection. Because the principles of ius sanguinis and ius soli are acknowledged by international law as satisfying connecting factors for the conferment of nationality, actual connection can easily be constituted using these principles. When addressing naturalization marriage, adoption, and residence for a certain time are also considered sufficient actual connections. Therefore, for naturalization, importance is in the existence of an actual connection between the state and an individual that is not constituted by means of birth.

In this context, investment citizenship programs within which citizenship is granted only in exchange for money without a genuine link between the individual and the state could give rise to allegations of abuse of rights. This leads to reconsidering the importance of the principle of effective nationality as applied in the Nottebohm case (ICJ 1, 1955), because granting citizenship in the absence of elements such as residing in the country or knowing its language or culture, things which show an actual connection between a state and an individual, may be evaluated as the abuse of exclusive jurisdiction and result in other states refusing to recognize this type of citizenship. Apart from the potential problems in international law, the legal connection constituted through investment citizenship programs also does not exactly correspond to the concept of nationality under the general theory of state. 


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APA

Kayalı, D. (2023). Some Thoughts on the Principle of Effective Nationality and Citizenship Through Investment Programs. Public and Private International Law Bulletin, 43(1), 105-137. https://doi.org/10.26650/ppil.2023.43.1.1240913


AMA

Kayalı D. Some Thoughts on the Principle of Effective Nationality and Citizenship Through Investment Programs. Public and Private International Law Bulletin. 2023;43(1):105-137. https://doi.org/10.26650/ppil.2023.43.1.1240913


ABNT

Kayalı, D. Some Thoughts on the Principle of Effective Nationality and Citizenship Through Investment Programs. Public and Private International Law Bulletin, [Publisher Location], v. 43, n. 1, p. 105-137, 2023.


Chicago: Author-Date Style

Kayalı, Didem,. 2023. “Some Thoughts on the Principle of Effective Nationality and Citizenship Through Investment Programs.” Public and Private International Law Bulletin 43, no. 1: 105-137. https://doi.org/10.26650/ppil.2023.43.1.1240913


Chicago: Humanities Style

Kayalı, Didem,. Some Thoughts on the Principle of Effective Nationality and Citizenship Through Investment Programs.” Public and Private International Law Bulletin 43, no. 1 (Mar. 2024): 105-137. https://doi.org/10.26650/ppil.2023.43.1.1240913


Harvard: Australian Style

Kayalı, D 2023, 'Some Thoughts on the Principle of Effective Nationality and Citizenship Through Investment Programs', Public and Private International Law Bulletin, vol. 43, no. 1, pp. 105-137, viewed 3 Mar. 2024, https://doi.org/10.26650/ppil.2023.43.1.1240913


Harvard: Author-Date Style

Kayalı, D. (2023) ‘Some Thoughts on the Principle of Effective Nationality and Citizenship Through Investment Programs’, Public and Private International Law Bulletin, 43(1), pp. 105-137. https://doi.org/10.26650/ppil.2023.43.1.1240913 (3 Mar. 2024).


MLA

Kayalı, Didem,. Some Thoughts on the Principle of Effective Nationality and Citizenship Through Investment Programs.” Public and Private International Law Bulletin, vol. 43, no. 1, 2023, pp. 105-137. [Database Container], https://doi.org/10.26650/ppil.2023.43.1.1240913


Vancouver

Kayalı D. Some Thoughts on the Principle of Effective Nationality and Citizenship Through Investment Programs. Public and Private International Law Bulletin [Internet]. 3 Mar. 2024 [cited 3 Mar. 2024];43(1):105-137. Available from: https://doi.org/10.26650/ppil.2023.43.1.1240913 doi: 10.26650/ppil.2023.43.1.1240913


ISNAD

Kayalı, Didem. Some Thoughts on the Principle of Effective Nationality and Citizenship Through Investment Programs”. Public and Private International Law Bulletin 43/1 (Mar. 2024): 105-137. https://doi.org/10.26650/ppil.2023.43.1.1240913



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Submitted23.01.2023
Accepted12.02.2023
Published Online27.03.2023

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