Dual (or Multiple) Citizenship

Dual citizenship is the result of the interaction of the laws of two countries. People can become dual citizens automatically (normally by birth or marriage), or after successfully applying for the citizenship of another country.

When it comes to multiple citizenship – often also referred to as dual citizenship – the world is divided: there are countries whose citizenship laws allow their own citizens to acquire another citizenship without losing their present citizenship. In contrast, other countries do not allow the acquisition or holding of another citizenship, i.e. the acquisition of another citizenship may lead to the loss of the present citizenship.

Accordingly, the acquisition of an alternative, second citizenship is only legally possible for citizens of those countries which allow dual citizenship.

The following is an overview of citizenship laws in selected countries with regard to dual citizenship. The information is based on Henley & Partners’ interpretation of citizenship legislation in the relevant countries.

Countries which Allow Dual Citizenship

The following countries allow the acquisition of another citizenship:

Austria1 Denmark Grenada Latvia Philippines Switzerland
Australia Dominica Hungary Lebanon Poland Syria
Bangladesh Ecuador Iceland Lithuania3 Portugal Thailand
Belgium Egypt1 Iran Macedonia Romania Turkey
Belize El Salvador Iraq Malta Russia United Kingdom
Brazil Fiji Ireland Mexico Serbia United States of America
Canada Finland Israel Montenegro Spain (only in certain cases) Vietnam
Chile France Italy New Zealand Sri Lanka Western Samoa
Colombia Germany1 Jordan Pakistan2 St. Kitts & Nevis
Cyprus Greece Kenya Peru Sweden

1Generally not allowed; Persons retain their former citizenship only if they apply for permission so prior to taking out another citizenship. Otherwise citizenship is generally lost ex lege; in Austria: additionally Austria allows dual citizenship if Austrian citizenship is acquired under § 10 (6) of the Austrian Citizenship Act

2According to Chapter 14, Annex J-Article 6* of 1951 Pakistani Nationality Law and the amendments 1952, 1972, 1973 and 2000, holding dual citizenship was not permitted. But now the government of Pakistan recognizes and allows its citizens to also hold citizenships of 16 countries, including Australia, Belgium, Canada, France, Iceland, New Zealand, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, the United States, and others.

Countries which Do Not Allow Dual Citizenship

The following countries do not allow the acquisition of another citizenship:

Brunei Kazakhstan Mauritius Norway Solomon Islands
China Kiribati Myanmar Papua New Guinea Venezuela
Indonesia Kuwait Nepal Saudi Arabia
Japan Malaysia Netherlands Singapore
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