Since 1 January 2021, all foreign persons who are given a No Objection Notification or Exemption Certificate have been required (under sections 98C, 98D or 98E of the Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Act 1975) to notify Treasury no later than 30 days after taking each specified action. More detailed information regarding the reporting of actions is available.
In 2022, Treasury commenced a series of campaigns to remind foreign persons, who had not yet reported, of their statutory reporting obligations under sections 98C, 98D and 98E. Treasury found that, out of those who responded to the three 2022 statutory reporting reminder campaigns, most had not provided their notification within the required 30 days.
Failure to notify the taking of an action, under s98C, s98D or s98E, in the correct manner within 30 days may also result in a civil penalty of 250 penalty units for each occasion. A penalty unit is a dollar amount used to calculate monetary penalties under Australian legislation. It is set under the Crimes Act 1914. For offences occurring from 1 January 2023, one penalty unit equates to A$275.
Australia welcomes foreign investment, but significant penalties, including Infringement Notices and civil penalties apply for contraventions of the law. As a foreign investor, it is your responsibility to ensure that you understand and comply with your obligations regarding Australia’s foreign investment framework.
While Treasury will continue to work with foreign persons and remind them of their obligations, we take non‑compliance seriously and will be focusing on ensuring that statutory reporting obligations are being met.
Foreign persons may wish to seek independent professional advice to better understand their specific obligations.
If you have any questions, you can email us at FIRBNotifications@treasury.gov.au