New exemptions for OIO consents of sensitive land

New exemptions for OIO consents of sensitive land

The new Overseas Investment Amendment Regulations (No. 2) 2016 came into force on 1 February 2017. These regulations brought in additional exemptions to those previously available for the requirement to obtain OIO consent for sensitive land.

From a property perspective, the new exemptions most likely to be helpful are:

  • The “re-grant” of an existing interest – which will cover certain leases;
  • Transactions between overseas persons in respect of previously consented land; and
  • Public Works Act acquisitions.

In addition, a new exemption for certain bodies corporate who are overseas persons only because overseas custodians hold custodial securities in that body corporate, will be particularly helpful for listed companies.

The exemptions can only be applied for in respect of transactions occurring after 1 February 2017. Although the exemptions appear quite wide, each exemption is subject to various conditions – so whether or not a transaction falls within an exemption will need to be considered on a case by case basis.

To discuss any of the new exemptions, or if you would like us to do a transaction-specific assessment for you, please contact a member of our team.