The new framework for the Significant Investor (SIV) and Premium Investor (PIV) programmes has now been implemented and is effective from 1 July 2015. The SIV programme provides the opportunity for foreign persons to obtain an Australian visa by investing at least AUD$5 million over four years in complying Australian investments.

In order to comply with the new SIV regime, applicants must invest in the following investment products developed by licensed Australian managers:

  • At least $500,000 into a Venture Capital Limited Partnership (VCLP) or Early Stage Venture Capital Limited Partnership (ESVCLP);
  • At least $1.5 million in a managed investment scheme or listed investment company, that invests in emerging companies; and
  • Up to $3 million in a managed investment scheme or listed investment company, that primarily invests in a permitted asset class, including:
    • Companies, A-REITs, infrastructure trusts including their ordinary equity, preferred equity, convertible bonds or corporate issued floating rate notes listed on the ASX.
    • Corporate bonds or notes issued by an ASX entity (or wholly owned subsidiary of the Australian listed entity) or investment grade rated Australian corporate bonds or notes rated by an Australian licensed debt rating agency.
    • Deferred annuities issued by Australian registered life companies.
    • Retail, office, industrial or hotel real property in Australia.

Norton Rose Fulbright is a strategic legal advisor to fund managers involved in the development of investment products offered to high net worth migrant investors. Reflecting the firm’s reputation, Norton Rose Fulbright has been at the forefront of consultations with government and industry stakeholders leading to the development of the new SIV regime. The firm is advising fund managers on modifications to their existing products to maintain compliance, and assisting with the launch of a range of VCLP, small companies and balancing fund products to be offered under the new regime.