Overseas Investment

Corporate and commercial law

Achieving successful commercial objectives involves collaborating with lawyers who understand your business, your commercial environment and your expectations for the future. Your lawyer should act as your business partner, offering advice to help you make better business decisions.

This requires people who can explain complex situations in plain English, provide dependable and accurate information, anticipate and manage risks, and develop solutions to get you a profitable outcome.

Overseas investment covers two aspects of law, overseas investors wanting to purchase land or business assets in New Zealand, or New Zealanders wanting to purchase land or business assets overseas. In both cases, you will need accurate and practical legal advice to proceed with any transaction.

New Zealand has liberal regulations for foreign investment compared to many countries around the world, but those regulations were tightened in 2018. Rather than a ban, we now have a consenting regime governing who needs to obtain a consent for foreign investment, when consent is required, and the process for obtaining consent.

Foreign investment in New Zealand

New Zealand is an excellent country for foreign investment as it has a stable economy based around abundant resources. While the government welcomes foreign investment, many investors will need to work with the Overseas Investment Office (OIO) to complete a transaction. This can be a complex and time consuming process.

Under The Overseas Investment Amendment Bill, gaining consent to buy residential or lifestyle property is now restricted. Applications to the OIO will need to show if foreign acquisition of property would be of benefit to New Zealand. There is a range of statutory criteria for approval and some exemptions. Our lawyers can provide advice and facilitate the process to help you proceed.

How we help

We provide legal advice for a wide range of overseas investment transactions, including buying a holiday home right through to significant purchases of property or businesses. With the changes to overseas investment laws in New Zealand, it’s important to get specialised legal assistance to ensure your transaction is managed smoothly.

Please contact us if we can be of assistance.

Areas of expertise:

  • Advising you if consent is required
  • Preparing Overseas Investment Office applications
  • Liaising with the Overseas Investment Office
  • Assisting investors with government approvals
  • Sales and purchase agreements
  • Fishing quotas