What are the prospects for those wishing to invest in the Cook Islands, be it from buying a business , to those who are eligible to purchase a home or vacant land. Land tenure in the Cook Islands can be considered unique and is based on leasehold rather than freehold. This, in most cases, allows for a smaller initial investment into property and/or businesses if compared to similar in a freehold sense.
Maximum period of leases are 60 years, although most are open to renewal by negotiation, at any time, with the landowners.
Foreign investors will find that domestic homes and vacant sections of land are not available as their initial way of entry to these islands, and that the purchase of an existing business (that is for sale) is the most straight forward way of entry. Once you have been approved to purchase a business, and after operating that business for several years, then residential property can then be explored with approval from the B.T.I.B ( i.e. the Business Trade Investment Board , which is the government body that approves all foreign investors) There is always a good choice of long term rental properties in the meantime.
So, good local knowledge from your Real Estate agent is important as exceptions to the general rule are sometimes possible.
Here in the Cook Islands, tourism pretty well supports the entire economy, with other income generating industries then supporting this core sector. Business and private infrastructure is well established and efficient, but a major overhaul of water quality and distribution, waste disposal, transport and roads are currently underway, paid for with large, soft loans from overseas.
Our affiliate site – Cook Islands Real Estate.com has more information on this and the application process.