Reinstated monetary screening thresholds in respect of renewals or material variations of leases for non-sensitive developed commercial land

The Australian Government has made amendments to the Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Regulation 2015 (Cth).

Our update on 2 April 2020 (accessible here) explains that Regulation.

The changes reinstate the normal monetary thresholds in relation to the renewal or material variation of existing non-sensitive leasehold interests in developed commercial land where the same acquirer held a substantially similar interest immediately before 29 March 2020.

The monetary thresholds the table below apply from 4 September 2020:

 For this kind of land

 Threshold - more than:

Leases that is being acquired by a foreign person  who is an agreement country or region investor

 $1,192 million

Land that is being acquired by any foreign person  other than an agreement country or region  investor, or a foreign government investor

 $275 million

Land that is being acquired by a foreign  government investor

 $0


For renewals or material variations of leasehold interests in sensitive developed commercial land, or where there is a change in the lessee, the $0 monetary screening threshold applies.

The $0 monetary screening thresholds continue to apply in respect of other transactions.

The following transitional arrangements apply to applications and notifications that were lodged with FITB before 4 September 2020:

  • Where a foreign person has previously submitted an application that is still being processed and the applicant’s proposed action is no longer a significant and notifiable action, the applicant may withdraw the application and request a fee refund.
  • Where a foreign person has previously submitted an application that is still being processed, and that application includes some proposed actions which are no longer significant and notifiable actions, the applicant should contact their case officer to discuss amendments to the scope of the application.
  • Where a foreign person has previously obtained a no objection notification (with or without conditions) in relation to an action but is yet to take the action and the action is no longer a significant and notifiable action, the no objection notification no longer applies and the applicant may take the action without foreign investment approval.  
  • Where a foreign person has previously obtained a no objection notification that includes conditions, and has already taken the action that is the subject of the no objection notification, but the same action would no longer be a significant and notifiable action, the conditions will continue to apply.
  • Where a foreign person has previously obtained an exemption certificate, and under that exemption certificate has already taken actions that were significant and notifiable actions at the time they were taken, but which would no longer be so, those actions will still contribute to the financial limit of the exemption certificate and any conditions attached to those actions under the exemption certificate will continue to apply. However, such actions taken from 4 September would not contribute to the financial limit and would not be subject to the exemption certificate conditions.