Larry Page, the billionaire co-founder of tech titan Google, was granted residency in New Zealand earlier this year.
The New Zealand government confirmed the decision to CNBC, and Page is reported to have spent time in New Zealand earlier this year with his unwell child.
Page is understood to have gained the “Investor Plus” residency visa, which requires applicants to have NZ$10 million ($7 million) to invest in New Zealand over a three-year period.
It is reported that Page, 48, had applied for New Zealand residence visa in November 2020, but the application was unable to be processed because he was offshore at the time.
But matters changed on 12 January when Page he landed in Auckland on 12 January, one day after the Page family had filed an urgent application for their son to be evacuated from Fiji due to a medical emergency.
“Once Mr. Page entered New Zealand, his application was able to be processed and it was approved on 4 February 2021,” Immigration New Zealand told CNBC in a statement.
New Zealand health minister Andrew Little told Parliament last week the nation gets roughly 100 medevac requests a year.
“I’m advised all of the normal steps occurred in this case,” he said in response to a question about how Page had managed to enter New Zealand when the borders were shut to non-residents during the Coronavirus pandemic.
Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, New Zealand has kept its infection rates low by refusing entry to overseas travelers.
“Immigration New Zealand can confirm Larry Page met relevant requirements to be approved entry to New Zealand,” a spokesperson told CNBC.
New Zealand does play host to a couple of other well know tech figures.
For example, Peter Thiel, who co-founded PayPal, was granted Kiwi citizenship in 2017 even though he’d only spent 12 days in New Zealand.
And lets not forget German-Finnish Internet entrepreneur Kim Dotcom, who resides in the beautiful town of Queenstown on the South Island.
Kim Dotcom is the charismatic co-founder of the file-sharing website Megaupload, and the Supreme Court in New Zealand on November last year ruled he can be returned to the US to face copyright charges, after a long-running legal battle.
He is currently appealing that ruling.
New Zealand is located in an isolated part of the world, and is considered to be a safe haven in case of a societal collapse, as it is relatively self-dependent in terms of food and energy.
Billionaires have been reported to be buying land for bunkers in New Zealand in preparation for an apocalypse.
Last week, a study from the Global Sustainability Institute, at Anglia Ruskin University, found that New Zealand, Iceland, the UK, Tasmania and Ireland were the places best suited to survive a global collapse of society.
New Zealand was found to have the greatest potential to survive relatively unscathed due to its geothermal and hydroelectric energy, abundant agricultural land and low human population density (it only has a population of 5 million).
It also boasts a temperate climate (although it gets more rain than the UK) and a stable political system.
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