Significant Investor Visa Explained

The Significant Investor Visa allows a person to reside in Australia, come and go as he or she chooses, and to invest in a country with stable economic growth. Recent changes in the Australian Department of Immigration’s policy in this area will be of interest to potential investors wishing to relocate. In short, to be eligible, a client must invest at least $5 million in ‘complying investments’ for at least 4 years before being eligible for a permanent visa.

There is an option for being nominated by a particular State or Territory (which will expedite the visa application process) and the WA nomination criteria includes:

  • ·You have business and/or personal assets of at least A$5,000,000 which are available for investment in complying investment(s) in Australia immediately prior to visa grant; and
  • ·You have an additional A$50,000 which is available for domestic and/or settlement purposes;
  • Applicants are considered on a case by case basis with the contribution to the Western Australian economy being the prime factor considered for approval of State nomination.

With regards to eligible managed fund investments, the following information is useful:

A new Legislative Instrument IMMI 13/092 [F2013L01571] Migration Regulations 1994 – Specification under regulation 5.19B – Eligible Managed Fund Investments – July 2013 specifies eligible managed fund investments for the Significant Investor Streams of Subclass 188 and 888 visas. This instrument replaces Legislative Instrument IMMI 12/117 from 23 November 2013.

Listed below are the eligible managed funds listed in the new, with notation showing whether it is new or showing how the wording has changed from the previous instrument.

(a) Infrastructure projects in Australia;

(b) Cash held by Australian deposit taking institutions (including negotiable certificates of deposit, bank bills and other cash-like instruments); [Previous instrument: “cash held by Australian deposit taking institutions”]

(c) Bonds issued by the Commonwealth Government or a State or Territory government;

(d) Bonds, equity, hybrids or other corporate debt in companies and trusts listed  or expected to be listed within 12 months on an Australian Stock Exchange; [Previous instrument: “bonds, equity, hybrids or other corporate debt in companies and trusts listed on any Australian Stock Exchange”]

(e) Bonds or term deposits issued by Australian financial institutions;

(f) Real property in Australia; [Previous instrument: “real estate in Australia”]

(g) Australian Agribusiness;

(h) Annuities issued by an Australian registered life company in accordance with section 9 or 12A of the Life Insurance Act 1995; [NEW]

(i) Derivatives used for portfolio management and non-speculative purposes which constitute no more than 20 per cent of the total value of the managed fund; [NEW]

(j) Loans secured by mortgages over the investments listed in subparagraphs 2(a) to 2(h) of this instrument; and [NEW]

(k) Other managed funds that invest in the investments listed in subparagraphs 2(a) to 2(j) of this instrument. [Previous instrument: “other ASIC regulated managed funds that invest in the above list of investments”]

The first significant investor visas have only been recently approved.

For a more detailed analysis, and for trusted, personal advice and support throughout the application process, contact Alisdair Putt at Putt Legal, registered Migration Agents and Immigration Lawyers.


Putt Legal are your specialists in Immigration Law. We can assist you in making your migration to Australia seamless.

The Australian visa process can be complex and confusing; our lawyers work with you to guide you through every step of the way.

We are highly qualified and experienced in immigration law matters and are committed to providing expert advice in every individual case.

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