Actor who quit France for Russia after a tax row with authorities says his native country is simply 'not interesting anymore'.
While the European Union is placing increased resources into blocking clandestine immigration to the continent, its member states, notably those of the south, worst-hit by the financial crisis, are mounting schemes to sell residency rights and even citizenship to wealthy non-EU foreigners in an attempt to attract millions of euros into state coffers. To qualify for most of the schemes it suffices to buy into luxury property, a deal which is notably attracting Russian, Chinese and Middle East investors. The European Commission, meanwhile, says it has no say in the cynical and apparently legal business of selling European citizenship. Ludovic Lamant reports.
Government to ease language skills requirements and streamline paperwork for granting citizenship to reverse fall in number of naturalisations.
The actor, who recently announced he was moving to Belgium to flee French taxes, is offered Russian citizenship in a decree by President Putin.