Foreign investment has historically been an important source of support for the Australian dairy sector. The dairy industry is strongly supportive of all
investment, foreign and domestic, that helps the industry grow and prosper provided it adheres to the same regulations.
On 1 March 2015, the Federal Government announced a reduction to the screening threshold for agricultural land from AU$252 million to AU$15 million. The
new threshold will include the cumulative value of agricultural land owned by the investor and the purposed purchase. An AU$55 million threshold for
investments in agribusiness will be introduced 1 December 2015.
A step towards a register of foreign owned farmland is also underway, with the Australian Tax Office (ATO) collecting information on all foreign purchases,
regardless of size from 1 July 2015. The ATO will also be auditing existing ownership of agricultural land by foreign investors to gain further insights
into the investment landscape.
ADF President, Noel Campbell said the register would help increase transparency and give industry a better idea of what foreign investment really looks
like in the dairy sector.
“The register is sound policy and will hopefully provide credible land ownership data to give us a comprehensive landscape of investment in agriculture
across Australia,” Mr Campbell said.
ADF supports the government’s recent initiatives to improve the robustness of the investment landscape in Australia which recognise the important role
of our global partners in helping the dairy industry to grow and strengthen.