Australian Update for China (July 2010)

Date: Jul 2010

In this edition of our Australian Update for China we discuss how FIRB has updated its approach to foreign investment in Australia; provide an update on the Australian Government’s recent changes to the previously proposed Resource Super Profits Tax; discuss the Queensland Government’s new laws relating to the management of coal seam gas water; and look at the Australian Treasury Department’s proposed sovereign tax immunity reform.

张贞熙 Jesse T H Chang
执行合伙人 (权亚) Managing Partner, TransAsia Lawyers Tel +86 10 6505 8188 Fax +86 10 6505 8189
约翰·寇迪斯 John Curtis
国际事务执行合伙人 (辉皓) Managing Partner International, Freehills Tel +61 3 9288 1436 Fax +61 3 9288 1567
In this issue

New financial year brings new FIRB policy

FIRB has updated its main policy document which details its approach to foreign investment in Australia. The policy is a substantial rewrite, with the primary changes clarifying certain matters of importance to the mining and resources industry, including the treatment of investment proposals by foreign government investors and acquisitions of mining tenements.

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Resources Tax developments

Earlier this month the Australian Government proposed to introduce a Mineral Resource Rent Tax (MRRT), with a design that is significantly different compared to the previously announced Resource Super Profits Tax (RSPT). The MRRT will only apply to Australian iron ore and coal projects. A number of aspects of the MRRT are less onerous than the RSPT, and there are also greater concessional arrangements for pre-existing projects.

Freehills’ tax alliance firm, Greenwoods & Freehills, has prepared the following materials in Mandarin to provide you with an update:

Freehills has also prepared an article in English to explain the changes.

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New CSG water laws

Many coal seam gas (CSG) projects have found it difficult to find viable uses for coal seam gas water (otherwise known as ‘associated water’) given the treatment technology and costs required to convert it to a quality which is suitable for commercial purposes. Against this backdrop, the Queensland Government has passed new laws in relation to the management of associated water.

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Sovereign tax immunity reform

The Australian Treasury Department released a second discussion paper in relation to the proposed sovereign tax immunity reform. In the discussion paper, the Treasury sets out key policy design aspects in relation to the immunity. Our tax alliance firm, Greenwoods & Freehills, has prepared a Mandarin summary for Chinese investors.

Please contact for more info.

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