Foreign investment is very important to the Australian economy. The Australian Government regulates the investment by foreigners through its foreign investment policy (the Policy).
The government’s approach is to encourage foreign investment consistent with community interest. The Policy provides for government scrutiny of many proposed foreign purchasers of Australian property.
The government has the power to block proposals that are required to be notified and which are determined to be contrary to the National interest.
The Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) is a Federal Government body which examines proposals by foreign people to undertake direct investment in Australia. It also makes recommendations to the government under the Policy. It is unlawful for a foreign person to invest in Australia without first obtaining FIRB approval, unless the purchase is exempt.
The Policy defines who is required to apply for approval. This may include natural persons (individuals) and foreign companies. Different types of investments also require approval whilst some types of investments are exempt.
It is very important to obtain expert legal advice before entering into a transaction to purchase property if you are foreign person or entity. Buying residential or investment property in Australia can be quite complex, as the rules change regularly and it’s important that you discuss all of the available options.
The Foreign Investment Review Board looks after the following categories in real estate property for which you might need their FIRB approval:
- Residential Investment Property;
- Commercial Investment Property;
- Rural and Agricultural land; and
- Hotels, Motels and Hotels.
Our team of property lawyers have over 25 years’ experience in assiting foreign individuals or companies invest in Australia. It’s important to consider all of the legal issues when investing in Australia which is why we recommend discussing your options with our team today.
Contact our team today to discuss your investment legal matters or if you would like to discuss your options with purchasing residential and/or commercial property.