Australia investment visa

WHAT IS THE AUSTRALIA INVESTOR STREAM VISA 188B?

The Australia Investor Stream Visa is a residency-by-investment program that requires a financial commitment of at least AUD 2,500,000 that must be invested according to determined proportions. Its processing is currently over 20 months and may lead to Australian citizenship after 5 years.

Advantages

  • Ability to work, live or study in Australia
  • Safe living environment and one of the highest standard of living in the world
  • Ability to bring eligible dependents:
    • Spouse or de facto partner
    • Dependent children under 18
    • Dependent children between 18-23 years old
  • High standard education and healthcare system
  • No English requirement
  • Secure investment through government bonds
  • Pathway to Citizenship
    • Provisional > Permanent > Citizenship

Investment Options

  • Make an investment of at least AUD 2.5 million in the following proportions:
    • at least AUD500,000 in venture capital and growth private equity funds which invest in start-ups and small private companies
    • at least AUD750,000 in approved managed funds. The managed funds must invest in emerging companies listed on the Australian Stock Exchange
    • a ‘balancing investment’ of at least AUD1.25 million in managed funds
  • The investment must be held for at least 5 years from the date of its issue in the nominating State or Territory.
  • The investment may be changed, but if withdrawn, the visa will be cancelled

Requirements

  • Investment of at least AUD 2.5 million in an Australian State or Territory for at least 5 years
  • Have business and personal net assets of at least AUD 2.5 million*, owned by the applicant and/or spouse, in the 2 fiscal years preceding the filing date with evidence
  • Have at least 3 years’ experience managing one or more qualifying businesses or eligible investments
  • Be under 55 years of age (exemption can apply)
  • Score at least 65 on the points test
  • You and all family members included in the application must meet Australian health and character requirements
  • Have a genuine intention to live for at least 2 years in the state or territory in which you have made a designated investment
  • In at least 1 out of the 5 fiscal years prior to submission, the applicant and/or spouse have:
    • managed a qualifying business which the applicant holds at least 10% ownership interest; or
    • managed ‘eligible investments’ of at least AUD 1.5 million

Process

  • Submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) via “Skill Select” online service in order to be nominated by a State or Territory Government
  • Upon receiving a nomination from a State or Territory government and an invitation to apply, submission of an online visa application within 60 days
  • Upon approval-in-principal of the visa application, the investor will be advised when to make the complying investment
  • Upon making the complying investment, the temporary visa will be issued
  • The visa has a duration of up to 5 years with a minimum physical residency requirement

FAQ

WHO IS THE 188B INVESTOR VISA AIMED AT?

Business professionals who have managed investments or owned a business and who want to invest AUD 2.5 million in an Australia State or Territory Government bonds for 5 years.

WHAT IS THE CRITERIA FOR APPLYING FOR THE INVESTOR VISA 188B?

For investors who:

  • Have business and personal net assets of at least AUD 2.5 million for the last 2 fiscal years immediately before being invited to apply
  • Are able to make an investment of at least AUD 2.5 million
  • Under the age of 55
  • Have managed a qualifying business or investments to the value of at least AUD1.5million and at least 3 years’ experience managing such a business or eligible investment
  • Score at least 65 on the points test
WHAT DIFFERENCES ARE THERE FOR THE STATE OF VICTORIA?
    • Applicants need 95 points rather than 65 points to apply
    • Applicant and dependents must establish a residence and reside in the State of Victoria;
    • Make an additional investment of at least AUD 500,000 in Victoria during the provisional period and must be held for no less than 24 consecutive months immediately proceeding the nomination application and directed into Victorian-based venture capital funds;
    • Cannot swap being primary applicant status with your spouse if bonds were not jointly held.
    • If the applicant wishes to apply for permanent residence following the visa grant, the applicant must hold its investment for no less than 12 consecutive months immediately preceding permanent residence application.
WHAT CATEGORIES DO YOU GET POINTS FOR?
  • Age
  • English language ability
  • Qualifications
  • Business experience
  • Net personal and business assets
  • Business turnover
  • Innovation
  • Special endorsement
WHO MAY BE INCLUDED IN THE APPLICATION?

The Applicant can include their spouse and dependent children to the application.Dependent children are defined as the Applicant’s child, or their partner’s child, who is not engaged, married or in a de facto relationship and is:

  • aged under 18 years, or
  • aged 18 to 23 years and dependent on the Applicant or the Applicant’s partner, or
  • aged 23 years or older and dependent on the Applicant or the Applicant’s partner due to a partial or total physical or mental disability.
HOW DO YOU APPLY?

Applications must submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) and be nominated by a State or Territory Government. After submission of EOI and nomination from a State or Territory government, the Applicant will have 60 days to lodge the visa application through and then if the application is accepted the Applicant will be advised when to make the investment after which the visa will be issued.

ARE THERE ARE ANY OTHER REQUIREMENTS?
  • The Applicant and his accompanying family members must be in good health.
  • The Applicant and family need to provide police certificates from each country they have lived in for 12 months or more over the past 10 years after they turned 16 years of age. All family members are required to provide this even if they are not migrating.
IS THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE A REQUIREMENT?

No. If the Applicant and family members are not able to demonstrate functional English (i.e. score 4.5 on the IELTS test), an additional fee is payable.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE SUBCLASS 188 AND THE SUBCLASS 888?

The Business Innovation and Investment Visa is a 2-stage process to obtain residency. The visa holder will first need to obtain a provisional visa (subclass 188) (i.e. a temporary residence visa) for 5 years. After complying with the necessary business and/or investment requirements, the visa holder may apply for a permanent residence visa (subclass 888).

DOES THE APPLICANT NEED TO PROVE THE SOURCE OF FUNDS FOR THE INVESTMENT?

Yes. The onus is on the Applicant to provide relevant and reliable documentation to evidence how they accrued their funds.

WHEN IS THE APPLICANT REQUIRED TO MAKE THE INVESTMENT?

The Applicant is only required to make the investment after submission and successful application and a request letter for the investment has been sent.

ARE THERE ANY OTHER REQUIREMENT RELATING TO THE INVESTMENT FUNDS?

The investment must be made from unencumbered funds generated from qualifying businesses or eligible investments. Investment funds may not come from loans.

ARE THERE ANY RESIDENCE REQUIREMENT FOR SUBCLASS 188B VISA HOLDERS?

Subclass 188b visa holders must have lived in Australia for at least 2 of the 4 years immediately before he/she apply for subclass 888b permanent residence visas.

HOW LONG IS THE SUBCLASS 188B VISA VALID?

The visa is valid for up to five years from the date it is granted.

CAN THE SUBCLASS 188B VISA HOLDER EXTEND THE VISA?

No, this is a provision visa. You must apply for a new visa if you want to stay longer. An extension is only available for the 188a (Business Innovation Stream) and 188c (Significant Investor Stream).

HOW LONG IS THE PROCESSING TIME?

It is approximately 27-33 months.

The present document is intended for guidance and general information only and does not constitute or purport to provide you with legal advice. Such information is subject to changes without notice. Each case is unique and depends on the facts and circumstances of the individual and due consideration should be taken if applying the general information to your personal situation. For an evaluation of your personal circumstances one of our legal team would be happy to assist.