Significant Investor Visa update

The Government announced the Significant Investor Visa as a new stream within its Business Innovation and Investment Visas (Subclass 188 and 888). The Visa was formed to provide an avenue for migrant investors to come into Australia to invest. The Visa commenced on 24 November 2012.

To be eligible for the Visa, the Visa applicant must meet certain requirements, including making investments of at least AUD $5,000,000.00 into complying investments.

What are “complying investments” for the purposes of the Visa?

There are three categories of complying investments and they include government bonds, direct investments into Australian proprietary companies and ASIC regulated managed funds with a mandate for investing in eligible asset classes in Australia.

Changes to the complying investments

The eligible assets of classes available were seen as being too narrow and as a result of consultation with various stakeholders such as the Financial Services Council, the eligible asset classes were broadened to include other classes, such as bonds or term deposits issued by Australian Financial Institutions, and loans secured by mortgages over the investments that form the other eligible asset classes.

These broader classes were made on 25 July 2013, whereby the Government revised the classes to also include, among other things, real property in Australia through a fund that has a mandate to invest in real property in Australia. IMMI 13/092

When does this change take effect?

The change takes effect from 23 November 2013. Fund managers should ensure that they complete the correct compliance declaration Form 1413 from 23 November 2013.

What does this mean for migrant investors?

Given the recent increase in migrant investors into real property in Australia,  the extension of the eligible asset classes to include real property in Australia, will enable these investors to potentially access the benefits of the Significant Investor Visa. .

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