The Australian government has made changes to the Significant Investor Visa (SIV) regime that have expanded the visa streams that will be required to maintain complying investments, reduced the investment period and adjusted investment allocations away from balancing investments towards venture capital and growth private equity investments. The changes took effect from 1 July 2021.
What is the SIV regime?
The SIV stream of subclass 188 visas offer entrepreneurial and high net worth individuals a pathway to permanent residency if they are willing to make “complying investments” in areas of the Australian economy, without complications that apply to other visas such as English language tests, business skills assessments or age limitations.
Any person willing to invest $5,000,000 in accordance with the complying investment framework (Framework) set out in the Migration (IMMI 15/100: Complying Investments) Instrument 2015 (Instrument) may apply for an SIV.
The changes that took effect on 1 July 2021 include the following matters of interest to fund managers:
Complying Investment Framework to extend to Investor visas
The complying investment framework now extends beyond SIV to the ‘Investor visa’ (IV). IV holders will be required to maintain an investment of $2.5 million in complying investments. In comparison, the investment requirement of SIV holders will remain at $5 million.
Changes to investment allocation
For applicants after 1 July 2021, the venture capital and private equity component has increased from 10% to 20% of the investment amount. The investment allocation for emerging companies remains at 30%, while the balancing investment allocation has reduced from 60% to 50%.
For new SIV holders, this means that they must maintain a minimum of $1 million in venture capital and private equity investments and the amount available for investment in balancing investments will reduce to $2.5 million per SIV holder. The investment requirements of existing SIV holders and applicants before 1 July 2021 remain unchanged.