by Lee Li, IIUSA Policy Analyst
IIUSA believes in the power of data analytics to inform and enhance the EB-5 marketplace. As such, we consistently seek a variety of EB-5 statistics via the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) in order to produce the latest EB-5 industry intelligence for our key constituencies. In particular, we are committed to empowering the EB-5 community with timely, quantitative insights on the latest EB-5 investor market trends with the goal of supporting our members to strategically develop and expand their EB-5 businesses on a global scale that would eventually stimulate economic development in their local communities.
Recently, our “FOIA machine” paid its dividends and delivered a comprehensive dataset of Form I-526 (Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur) receipt statistics by petitioners’ country of birth (COB) from fiscal year (FY) 1991 to FY2015.
Compared to our first EB-5 Investor Markets Report which analyzed EB-5 investor origin based on the approval data of Form I-526 by petitioners’ COB. The data recently received via FOIA that consists of the filing statistics of I-526 petitions could serve as a more accurate indicator of the latest demand trends of EB-5 visas.
Here are seven (7) of the most significant EB-5 investor markets trends, as illustrated by the latest filing statistics of I-526 petitions.
1. Asia continues to dominate EB-5 investor markets
As illustrated by Figure 1, Asia accounts for seven (out of 16) of the biggest EB-5 investor markets in FY2015. These Asian countries/territories contributed approximately 14,500 EB-5 investors in FY2015, which is equivalent to approximately $7.3 billion in EB-5 capital investments. In particular, five of the top six EB-5 investor markets from FY2015 and FY2014 are located in Southeast Asia. These top markets (China, Vietnam, India, Taiwan, and South Korea) account for 90% of all EB-5 investors who filed their I-526 petitions in FY2015.