The Nationals Deputy Senate Leader Fiona Nash is encouraging all residents of regional Australia to have their say on foreign investment policy, particularly as it relates to agricultural land and agribusiness.
“The Coalition has just released a discussion paper on the subject and I want to get as much feedback as possible from the Nationals’ heartland which is regional Australia,” Senator Nash said.
“Labor has its head in the sand, saying there is no issue, while others just want to let the market rip, but the people I talk to in regional Australia are deeply concerned.”
The Policy Discussion Paper invites comment on the following proposals:
- Developing a national register of foreign ownership of property;
- Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) consideration of any proposed foreign acquisition of agricultural land valued at $15 million or more;
- FIRB consideration of any proposed foreign acquisition of an agribusiness of $53 million or more;
- FIRB consideration of Australia’s food security when assessing foreign purchases of land and agribusinesses; and
- Expanding the FIRB to include at least one agriculture or agribusiness stakeholder.
Senator Nash said it was vital to get the balance right.
“We need to ensure that proper processes are in place to scrutinise proposals for foreign ownership of agricultural land. Our future food security is a priority, and we are well aware other nations are seeking greater control of Australian agricultural assets for their own domestic food security purposes,” Senator Nash said.
Senator Nash said people interested in participating in the debate could email their ideas to her at email@example.com or write to her at 79 Main Street, Young NSW 2594.
Media contact: Murray Lees 0417 406 338
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