Update – Register of Foreign Ownership of Australian Assets

June 2023
Region: Asia Pacific

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) recently announced the introduction of a new Register of Foreign Ownership of Australian Assets (Register). It is expected that the Register will come into effect from 1 July 2023.

The Register is intended to consolidate the existing registers administered by the ATO by providing a streamlined process for foreign investors to manage their Australian investments and support compliance with Australia’s foreign investment framework.

At the same time, the Register imposes a number of new reporting obligations for foreign investors in addition to those that are already required under the Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Act 1975 (Cth) (Act), including the obligation to report interests in mining and agricultural land, as well as small-scale property transactions. These new reporting obligations are not retrospective and will apply only to events occurring on and from the date the Register becomes effective.