15 October 2012

New Australia visa program to lure high worth investors

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More details have been revealed regarding the new Significant Investor category of Australia have been announced.

Australia visa

Wealthy foreign citizens willing to invest at least AU$5 million in the Australian economy will soon find it easier to secure an Australia visa.

The scheme, which was announced with only basic details earlier this year, will allow wealthy foreigners to quickly gain an Australia visa and then permanent residency status if they are willing to invest AU$5 million (£3.2 million) in the country's economy.

The new category is designed to attract some of the hundreds of thousands of newly made Chinese millionaires who are reportedly interested in investment immigration.

In order to be eligible for the scheme, wealthy investors must commit to invest at least $5 million in approved projects, mainly in private Australian companies, infrastructure projects, real estate projects or state government bond.

Last month Queensland announced its intention to relax its onerous visa requirements; the state took just 14% of the total migration intake last year. Although specific changes are yet to be announced, the state is expected to be a popular choice for applicants in the new scheme, especially as applicants have to be nominated by a state or territory government.

Immigration Minister Chris Bowen said the new category of visa will help attract a higher calibre of applicant capable of creating more jobs for Australians.

"Until now, the [investor] program has frankly advantaged businesses like takeaways and small retail outlets," said the minister.

"We want to select business migrants with a good track record of entrepreneurship."

The Australian Visa Bureau is an independent migration consultancy specialising in helping people lodge applications with the Australian Embassy.

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