Asia & Australia

August 22, 2018

New Zealand passes law prohibiting foreigners from property acquisitions


On August 15, the New Zealand Parliament approved the Overseas Investment Amendment Bill, which bars non-resident foreigners from buying existing homes.

It is a move completing the Labour-led Government's election campaign pledge which was started by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern which he led before the elections as a promise to clamp down on house price growth and reduce high rates of homelessness, in part by banning foreign buyers.

"This is a significant milestone and demonstrates this government's commitment to making the dream of home ownership a reality for more New Zealanders," Associate Finance Minister David Parker said.

“This government believes that New Zealanders should not be outbid by wealthier foreign buyers,” said Parker, who shepherded the legislation through parliament. “Whether it’s a beautiful lakeside or oceanfront estate, or a modest suburban house, this law ensures that the market for our homes is set in New Zealand not on the international market,” he further added.

As per the new law, large apartment complexes will be allowed to rent up to 60 percent of the units to foreigners.

The government has said the ban would not apply to Australians and has been negotiating with Singapore, whose free trade agreement with New Zealand allows foreign ownership, on whether to grant an exemption.

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