Australia to raise the bar for foreign investors

A senate report into the national interest test used by Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board calls for tougher screening of overseas bids.

Australia to raise the bar for foreign investors
Australia's government signals tighter rules for foreign purchases of farming land

Foreign buyers wanting to purchase an asset in Australia often find themselves entangled in a fickle and opaque approval process, according to the findings of a senate inquiry into the country’s foreign-investment ombudsman.

The arbitrary nature in which the Foreign Investment Review Board Firb assesses applications leads to “significant shortcomings in the transparency of the process and in the scrutiny of the national-interest test”, the inquiry concluded.

In some cases, foreign buyers...

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