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Australia Axes High-Investment 'Golden Visa' Amid Fears of Corruption and Criminal Exploitation

Publish Date: 22/01/2024

Australia discontinued its Investor Visa Program aimed at attracting big-spending investors over concerns of exploitation by corrupt foreign officials and criminals.

The program allowed wealthy investors to expedite their visa applications by making a minimum investment of $5 million in Australia, granting automatic permanent residency.

Investors under this visa were exempt from English language requirements and age limits, differentiating it from other visa categories.

Home Affairs Minister Clare O'Neil states that the program, introduced in 2012, is part of a "broken" migration system inherited by the government, prompting the need for reforms. The Albanese government temporarily halts applications for the significant investor visa as part of a comprehensive review of the nation's migration system. There are concerns that such visa schemes may facilitate money laundering by corrupt foreign officials and organized crime groups. A government review indicates that skilled migrants contribute $300,000 more to the economy over their lifetime compared to those who entered through an investor visa.

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