Australian Significant Investor Visa Under Review

By Editorial 17 April, 2014

The Australian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (AVCAL) has encouraged the Department of Immigration to expand the range of assets in which offshore investors can invest to secure residence through the Significant Investment Visa (SIV) program.

Under the program, offshore investors can secure permanent residency within four years providing they spend at least 160 days in Australia during this period and maintain an investment of at least AUD5m (USD4.68m) during that period. Since its introduction in late 2012, the SIV program has resulted in extra investment worth AUD720m for Australia. However, private equity and venture capital are not included in the list of "complying investments."

In a submission to the Department as part of a review of the program, the AVCAL describes this as a "shortcoming" of the program. The industry body points out that other developed economies, such as the United States, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and Singapore, are using equivalent programs to channel offshore investment into industry sectors that need capital to achieve economic growth targets.

AVCAL CEO Yasser El-Ansary observed: "There is an intense global race for capital from investors who are looking for markets that offer sustainable growth potential into the future, and that's where Australia has an opportunity to seek out new investment into venture capital and private equity, which will be critical to Australia's future economic prosperity."

Currently, migrant investors are required to invest AUD5m into complying investments for a minimum of four years before being eligible to apply for a permanent visa. Complying investments include: Commonwealth, state or territorial government bonds; Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC)-regulated managed funds with a mandate for investing in Australia; and direct investment into Australian proprietary companies.

Tags: Individuals | Investment | Private Equity | Australia | Offshore | Venture Capital | Expats | Immigration | Investment | Visas And Passports | Invest | Immigration | Investment |


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