The Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Legislation Amendment
Bill 2015 and its associated legislation (Bills)
introduced into Parliament today are substantially similar to the
drafts released earlier this year. The legislation is intended to
begin on 1 December 2015.
The important changes that you should be aware of are:
the types of actions a foreign person will need to notify to
the Treasurer before taking that type of action;
acquisitions of interests in Australian Land will need to be
notified to the Treasurer unless an exemption applies;
the Treasurer will be able to make a range of orders if the
actions of a foreign person are contrary to the national
the monetary thresholds which will apply to actions before they
are caught by the legislation;
the legislation will apply to foreign government
fees will be introduced for applications for approvals;
an extensive penalty regime will be implemented;
some purchasers of land will be required to pay 10% of the
purchase price (as a withholding tax) direct to the ATO (if they
know the vendor is a foreign person); and
civil and criminal offences will apply for a wide range of
circumstances including extending to third parties like company
officers, lawyers, accountants and real estate agents;
foreign persons who hold agricultural land as at 1 July 2015
will need to register those interests by 31 December 2015 with the
For more detailed information on this package of legislation see
We will be holding Briefing Sessions on Australia's Foreign
Investment Reforms in most of our offices. Your invitation to our
Briefing Session will follow shortly.
Clayton Utz communications are intended to provide
commentary and general information. They should not be relied upon
as legal advice. Formal legal advice should be sought in particular
transactions or on matters of interest arising from this bulletin.
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This decision has implications for Government authorities and corporations, and for private sector project proponents.
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