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The idea is to simply build the city brand and character by: encouraging local talents to create innovative products through offering them un-utilized spaces for them to re-design and sell from.

The idea is to simply build the city brand and character by: encouraging local talents to create innovative products through offering them un-utilized spaces for them to re-design and sell from.

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Good idea. A similar but more aggressive approach was implemented by the small island of St Kitts and Nevis whereby investors can get a citizenship, not just a visa, in exchange for their sizable investment on the island. (http://www.stkitts-citizenship.com/?gclid=CLzM5M-V96wCFQMPfAodD3nsRQ) But they focus on commercial investments.

I agree that foreign investment is one way to get the economic cycle of an area moving but there will be a few considerations to be looked at such as how do you ensure that foreign investors are steered towards social enterprises? (maybe through tax breaks and incentive schemes?) and how do you ensure that the foreign ties bring in fruitful opportunties for the development of local products rather than the other way around?

Personally I'm weary of governments' 'rich-man-visa' approach for multiple reasons one of which is that even not-so-rich immigrants bring in a lot to an economy in various sectors and fields, but I understand the political and economic reasoning of this approach. Nonetheless I wish communities and governments would start appreciating the cultural and economic value brought about by diversity. There's a great article in the Economist about the importance of keeping the doors open to immigrants: (http://www.economist.com/node/21538742)