Global Power | Local Knowledge | Uniquely Personal

Wealthier immigrants could kick start Australian construction

The new subclass 188 visa could bring in large amounts of foreign investment.

The introduction of the new subclass 188 visa is expected to result in an influx of wealthy immigrants, particularly from Asian countries, therefore bringing in huge amounts of much needed foreign investment that could jumpstart the nation's construction industry.

Under the new visa, which came into being last November, foreigners who invest a minimum of $5 million in Australia will be allowed to reside in the country for up to four years without the need to pass an English language test.

This is likely to encourage larger numbers of Chinese businessmen who may previously have been prevented from investing in Australia due to their lack of English, according to Otan Property Funds manager Mark Butler.

This could also help to ease tensions caused by rising numbers of skilled immigrants in areas such as Western Australia and the Northern Territory, where housing shortages are becoming a problem due to a rapidly rising population.

Earlier this week The Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) called on the government to place a halt on 457 visas – the skilled working visa for immigrants in trade occupations – after the number of visas being granted shot up by 57 per cent in 2012, resulting in increased competition for jobs.

However, the country's ability to attract more foreign investment could spark a rise in the number of construction projects being commissioned, therefore putting this expanded workforce to good use.

DISCLAIMER: All information provided is of a general nature only and does not take into account your personal financial circumstances or objectives. Before making a decision on the basis of this material, you need to consider, with or without the assistance of a financial adviser, whether the material is appropriate in light of your individual needs and circumstances. This information does not constitute a recommendation to invest in or take out any of the products or services provided by SMATS Services (Australia) Pty Ltd or Australasian Taxation Services Pty Ltd.

COPYRIGHT: All information provided is protected by international copyright laws. You may not copy, reproduce, distribute, publish, display, perform, modify, create derivative works, transmit, or in any way exploit any such content, nor may you distribute any part of this content over any network. Copying or storing any content is expressly prohibited without prior written permission of SMATS Group or the copyright holder identified in the individual content's copyright notice. For permission to use the content on please contact

Subscribe Now