AUSA Migration Views on Significant Investor Visa Program


The Significant Investor Visa (SIV) program has been growing strongly with average monthly applications increasing by 15% in 2014-15.  The Government expects 800 applications in 2014-15.  Since it began in November 2012, there have been:

  • 2,075 Expressions of Interest received
  • 1,791 invitations to apply issued
  • 1,527 primary applications lodged
  • 651 primary visas granted.

90% of SIV applicants are from China.  50% of primary visas granted are sponsored by the State of Victoria and 36% by NSW.

On 15 October 2014 the Australian Government announced changes to the SIV program.  There were two key changes announced:

  1.  A change to the residence requirement for permanent residence. The Government announced that in future secondary applicants would have to spend 720 days over four years to qualify for permanent residence.
  2.  A change to Complying Investment (CI) under the program. The Government issued a draft CI proposal for comment on 12 February 2015 proposing that at least 20% of the CI ($1.0 million) should be invested in venture capital funds and 30% ($1.5 million) should be invested through managed funds in small Australian stock exchange listed companies.

AUSA Migration strongly objected to the proposed new residence requirement saying to the Government that it would ‘kill’ the SIV program.  On 15 January 2015 the Government amended its proposed new residence requirement to allow SIV visa holders to qualify for permanent residence if the primary applicant spent 160 days over four year in Australia.  This was a sensible amendment by the Government.

AUSA Migration has called on the Government to amend its proposed Complying Investment rules.  AUSA Migration has proposed that the required investments in venture capital funds and small stock exchanged listed companies should be limited to 30% of the CI ($1.5 million) and that the remaining 70% ($3.5 million) be open for investment at the applicant’s choice in either shares, commercial property, or corporate investments.              







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