FIRB Approvals

The globalisation of business means that many substantial Australian assets are the subject of interest from foreign investors. Minter Ellison’s transactional lawyers have extensive experience in advising foreign investors looking to acquire Australian assets.

Foreign investment in Australia is regulated by the Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Act 1975 (Cth) (FATA). The Australian Treasurer has wide discretion under the FATA to decline applications which are considered to be contrary to Australia’s national interest.

Our foreign investment specialist lawyers have in-depth knowledge of the Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) process and extensive experiences in handling FIRB applications on behalf of clients. We have advised on many unsolicited proposals to buy substantial assets from or to acquire control of listed Australian companies. We understand the law and what drives decision making within the FIRB.

In addition to the foreign investment regulations, we also have specialists to advise on any competition law issues, as well as taxation issues that need to be considered.

29 November 2013

Today, the Treasurer announced an order under the Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Act 1975 (Cth) blocking Archer Daniels Midland's proposed acquisition of GrainCorp on the basis that it is contrary to Australia's national interest. The Treasurer could have allowed the proposed acquisition to proceed with or without conditions but chose not to do so.

10 January 2012

Following the call for public comments in April 2011, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) and the Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) formally promulgated the Foreign Investment Industrial Guidance Catalogue (2011 Revision) (外商投资产业指导目录(2011年修订)) (the "2011 Catalogue") on 24 December 2011.  The 2011 Catalogue will take effect from 30 January 2012 and replace the current version, which took effect in December 2007 (the "2007 Catalogue").

June 2011

In this edition of Mergers & Acquisitions, we look at:

  • The potential impact of exchange rate fluctuations on takeover bids involving foreign currency
  • The importance of full disclosure when announcing your takeover – lessons from BC Iron
  • ASIC's proposed update to its policy on acquisitions approved by members

5 November 2010

This article discusses the core components of Australia's foreign investment regime, namely an overview of the Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Act and the government's most recent Foreign Investment Policy guidelines.