Passport sales, phone sex and extortion: what dwarf countries do for a living

Passport sales, phone sex and extortion: what dwarf countries do for a living

Categories: Economy | World

It is not easy to be a small country in our difficult times. When coconut shavings stocks fall on the international stock market - especially! But some states are not discouraged and invent ways to earn money that even Ostap Bender would envy.

Passport sales, phone sex and extortion: what dwarf countries do for a living

Passport sales, phone sex and extortion: what dwarf countries do for a living

Sale of passports to wealthy people. Saint Kitts and Nevis

This gave new residents of Saint Kitts a number of significant advantages: visa-free entry to 128 countries, including European countries, and extremely favorable tax conditions. In 2013, the country earned $100 million, which was about 13% of GDP.

Soon other small states followed the example of Saint Kitts and Nevis, and currently the turnover in the industry is about $ 2 billion. Antigua and Barbuda joined the program in 2013, and the profit from the sale of passports is the only income of this country.

Of course, many large countries are dissatisfied with such amateur activity. The United States is worried that Iranians can get through Saint Kitts and Nevis (although the leadership of Saint Kitts claims that Iranians cannot participate in the program). In 2011, Malta also wanted to join the passport sale program, but after pressure from the European Union, it had to refuse. Although, if you think about it, even larger countries do not disdain such earnings. So, you can get a residence permit in the United States for 500 thousand dollars of investment.

Passport sales, phone sex and extortion: what dwarf countries do for a living

Selling passports to unsecured people. Comoros

At the same time, a certain Bashar Kivan, a Kuwaiti by origin, but living in the Comoros (a small state in the Indian Ocean with a population of about 800 thousand inhabitants), offered 32 thousand Bedouins to become citizens of this glorious country. Of course, not for free. According to Kivan's plan, the UAE had to pay $ 200 million for this.

At first, this proposal did not cause delight among the indigenous Comorians, but 200 million turned out to be a strong argument for a country where people lived on an average of $ 1.25 a day. Kivan made a fiery speech in which he described how schools and hospitals would appear on the Comoros with the money received from the Emirates, roads would be repaired and there would be a garden city in general.

But, of course, everything turned out not so great: the Comorians believe that Kivan appropriated part of the funds, and the Bedouins, who were promised that Comorian citizenship would allow them to obtain UAE citizenship, also did not wait for what they wanted.

Passport sales, phone sex and extortion: what dwarf countries do for a living

Providing lines for phone sex. Niue

That all changed in the late 1980s when the Niue government struck a deal allowing the country's telephone code to be used around the world. The people of Niue, mostly conservative Christians, were outraged to learn that most of the state lines are used for phone sex. Despite the fact that such a business brought good income, the Prime Minister of Niue canceled the deal in 1997.

Passport sales, phone sex and extortion: what dwarf countries do for a living

Provision of the state telephone code. Tuvalu

Passport sales, phone sex and extortion: what dwarf countries do for a living

Staging music shows. Nauru

But all good things come to an end, including phosphates. And when in the 1990s it became clear that it was necessary to look for other sources of income, the government of Nauru made a number of ill-considered investments, and the most idiotic was the production of a musical show telling about the love between Leonardo da Vinci Vinci and Mona Lisa. The world tour of the show was supposed to bring Nauru a profit, but the show failed at the first show.

Currently, Nauru's main source of income is the granting of citizenship to people who are banned from entering Australia.

Passport sales, phone sex and extortion: what dwarf countries do for a living

Sale of postage stamps. Former British island colonies

Half of the income of the St. Helena Islands is the proceeds from the sale of postage stamps for collectors and coins. Tristan da Cunha is even more interesting: in 1961, its inhabitants were evacuated due to a volcanic eruption, and today 264 people live there permanently. But nevertheless, the revenue from the sale of stamps here is very solid. And this is despite the fact that the first stamp issued here in 1942 was exchanged for potatoes and cigarettes, because there was no money on the island.

Passport sales, phone sex and extortion: what dwarf countries do for a living

Sale of policies. Kingdom of Tonga

On the recommendation of Jesse Bogdanoff, the King of Tonga made a number of investments (including in life insurance policies for Americans with terminal diseases) and lost almost all the money. A crisis broke out in Tonga, the national currency depreciated, the standard of living fell. The State of Tonga sued an unlucky business consultant (his previous work experience consisted mainly in selling miraculous magnets for the back) and won the case. But this did not improve the financial situation.

Passport sales, phone sex and extortion: what dwarf countries do for a living

Extortion. Eritrea

The British government demanded that the Eritrean consulate stop illegal extortion, and the consulate took this step. However, this means that the same money Eritreans should not pay in Great Britain, and at home.

The lion's share of refugee income is spent by the Eritrean Government to support Islamist militants in order to destabilize Ethiopia.

Passport sales, phone sex and extortion: what dwarf countries do for a living

Arms trade. Antigua

A month later, a major clash between the Medellin drug cartel and the police took place in Colombia. As it turned out, the drug cartel was armed with Israeli weapons. The Prime Minister of Antigua, Vere Bird, became the main suspect. His eldest son was engaged in the sale. It was also planned to create a training camp in Antigua for Tamil rebels from Sri Lanka.

Keywords: State | Money | Countries

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