Beijing a buyer in Shell gas facilities

Original article by Perry Williams
The Australian – Page: 2 : 24-Dec-20

The deal for Global Infrastructure Partners to buy a stake in the Queensland Curtis LNG project’s infrastructure could potentially be vetoed on national interest grounds. It has been revealed that China Investment Corporation is a minority investor in the GIP fund that struck the $US2.5bn ($3.3bn) deal to buy part of Shell’s stake in the LNG infrastructure. The deal must be cleared by the Foreign Investment Review Board, although Treasurer Josh Frydenberg can override the FIRB under changes to foreign investment rules that were made earlier in 2020.

CORPORATES
GLOBAL INFRASTRUCTURE PARTNERS,QUEENSLAND CURTIS LNG PTY LTD,CHINA INVESTMENT CORPORATION,ROYAL DUTCH SHELL PLC,AUSTRALIA. FOREIGN INVESTMENT REVIEW BOARD,AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY

FIRB investment fees set to jump on property and business

Original article by Matthew Cranston
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 12 : 18-Sep-20

The federal government has previously reduced to zero the ‘dollar value threshhold’ for foreign bids to be assessed by the Foreign Investment Review Board. It has now adjusted the fees that are applied to foreign investment applications, so as to reflect the costs of reviewing them under the new threshold process. The change will see some fees increased and some reduced; in the case of residential property, all fees will rise, except for properties valued at $38 million or more.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FOREIGN INVESTMENT REVIEW BOARD

Tighter test for foreign investors

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 6 : 5-Jun-20

The federal government will announce a revamp of Australia’s foreign investment regime on 5 June; the government wants to close what it contends are ‘national security’ gaps in the current rules. One of the changes will see the Foreign Investment Review Board apply a National Security Test to assets defined as a ‘sensitive national security business’; such assets include water, telecommunications and energy. The government intends to legislate the changes in July, with the intention of having them come into effect in January.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FOREIGN INVESTMENT REVIEW BOARD

Farmer revolt over China Mengniu’s Lion Dairy bid

Original article by Sue Mitchell, John Kehoe
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 16 : 26-Nov-19

Some federal politicians have expressed concern about China Mengniu Dairy Company’s proposed acquisition of milk processor Lion Dairy & Drinks. Labor senator Kim Carr says the $600m deal should be subject to a number of conditions to ensure that jobs and processing facilities in regional areas are protected. Nationals MP Barnaby Joyce is concerned about China’s "creeping acquisition" of dairy-related assets in Australia, while independent MP Andrew Wilkie says ownership of Australia’s leading brands is becoming increasingly concentrated. Farmers say the deal should be conditional on a floor price for the farm gate price of milk.

CORPORATES
LION-DAIRY AND DRINKS PTY LTD, CHINA MENGNIU DAIRY COMPANY LIMITED, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, NATIONAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIA. FOREIGN INVESTMENT REVIEW BOARD, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION, BELLAMY’S AUSTRALIA LIMITED – ASX BAL, KIRIN HOLDINGS COMPANY LIMITED, DAIRY CONNECT LIMITED, MURRAY GOULBURN CO-OPERATIVE COMPANY LIMITED, SAPUTO INCORPORATED

Your data at risk in takeovers

Original article by Glenda Korporaal
The Australian – Page: 1 & 2 : 21-Aug-19

Foreign Investment Review Board chairman David Irvine has stressed the need to closely scrutinise foreign bids for companies that own data centres or hold Australians’ personal data. Irvine has used an Australia China Business Council speech to argue that data must be afforded the same level of protection as critical infrastructure such as ports, water supply and the power sector. He added that the FIRB’s tougher stance on the issue of data security has not attracted much concern among foreign investors.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FOREIGN INVESTMENT REVIEW BOARD, AUSTRALIA CHINA BUSINESS COUNCIL, AUSTRALIAN SECURITY INTELLIGENCE ORGANISATION, AUSTRALIAN SECRET INTELLIGENCE SERVICE, AUSTRALIA. CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE SECTOR, SIRTEX MEDICAL LIMITED, NATURE’S CARE, LIFE-SPACE GROUP, HEALIUS LIMITED – ASX HLS, JANGHO GROUP, AUSTRALIAN DEFENCE FORCE, KPMG AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, UNIVERSITY OF SYDNEY, AUSTRALIAN STRATEGIC POLICY INSTITUTE LIMITED

Asians still biggest investors: Knight Frank

Original article by Lisa Allen
The Australian – Page: 25 : 9-May-19

The federal government’s restrictions on foreign investment in residential property have not been a deterrent for Asian buyers. Liam Bailey of Knight Frank says people from China and Southeast Asia are still the biggest investors in the local residential market. The global head of research notes that a number of other countries have imposed similar restrictions on foreign investors. Bailey forecasts growth in demand for geographically diverse property investments as global wealth increases.

CORPORATES
KNIGHT FRANK, CROWN RESORTS LIMITED – ASX CWN

FIRB gets tougher on China firms

Original article by Angus Grigg
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 2 : 17-Jan-19

The Foreign Investment Review Board is now said to be subjecting most takeover bids by Chinese companies to scrutiny to ensure that they are in the national interest. Regulation of such takeovers was relaxed under the Australia-China free-trade agreement, with deals that are below a certain threshold being exempt from FIRB approval. However, sources have indicated that the policy shift has been prompted by the introduction of China’s National Intelligence Law, which has increased the central government’s influence over private companies.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FOREIGN INVESTMENT REVIEW BOARD, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, UNITED STATES. DEPT OF DEFENSE, HEALIUS LIMITED – ASX HLS, JANGHO GROUP, AUSGRID PTY LTD, STATE GRID CORPORATION OF CHINA, APA GROUP – ASX APA, CHEUNG KONG INFRASTRUCTURE HOLDINGS LIMITED, AUSTRALIAN STRATEGIC POLICY INSTITUTE LIMITED, FEDERATION OF GERMAN INDUSTRIES

Hanson warns against bid for gas pipelines

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 4 : 19-Sep-18

Cheung Kong Infrastructure’s $13 billion takeover of pipeline operator APA Group remains subject to approval by the Foreign Investment Review Board. However, One Nation leader Pauline Hanson opposes the deal, arguing that key infrastructure should remain locally-owned, whether by governments or the private sector. Hanson has vowed to campaign against the deal if it receives government approval, while Liberal senator Jim Molan has also called for the deal to be blocked.

CORPORATES
APA GROUP – ASX APA, CHEUNG KONG INFRASTRUCTURE HOLDINGS LIMITED, AUSTRALIA. FOREIGN INVESTMENT REVIEW BOARD, ONE NATION PARTY, LIBERAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, IFM INVESTORS PTY LTD, HUAWEI TECHNOLOGIES COMPANY LIMITED, CENTRE ALLIANCE

Backlash as foreign buyers flee

Original article by Matthew Cranston, Larry Schlesinger
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 29 : 11-Jan-18

South Australia was the only state that did not record a downturn in sales of residential properties to foreign buyers in the December quarter, according to a new ANZ/Property Council survey. Property developers say factors such as restrictions on access to credit and higher taxes on foreign buyers have contributed to the downturn in demand, and prompted some developers to withdraw from the residential market. Meriton founder Harry Triguboff says his company is having to resell many apartments that had been pre-sold to Chinese buyers.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND BANKING GROUP LIMITED – ASX ANZ, PROPERTY COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA LIMITED, MERITON APARTMENTS PTY LTD, REALESTATE.COM.AU, REA GROUP LIMITED – ASX REA, CROWN GROUP PTY LTD, UBS HOLDINGS PTY LTD, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, LEND LEASE GROUP LIMITED – ASX LLC, AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS

FIRB tick for Ten takeover

Original article by Dana McCauley
The Australian – Page: 19 : 24-Oct-17

CBS Corporation’s acquisition of the Ten Network has cleared a key hurdle, with the Foreign Investment Review Board advising that it will not oppose the deal. The Supreme Court of New South Wales is scheduled to commence a hearing on the deal in late October, and small shareholders David Gubbay and Yunfeng Du are expected to challenge the transfer of Ten’s shares to CBS.

CORPORATES
TEN NETWORK HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX TEN, CBS CORPORATION, SUPREME COURT OF NEW SOUTH WALES, KORDA MENTHA AND COLLEAGUES PTY LTD, KPMG AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, 21ST CENTURY FOX INCORPORATED