New Australian Requirements for Foreign Media Owners
From 1 September 2018, a foreign person with company interests of 2.5 per cent or more (a foreign stakeholder) in an Australian media company is required to notify the Australian Communications & Media Authority (ACMA) of that interest.
The requirement follows the passing of the Broadcasting Legislation Amendment (Foreign Media Ownership, Community Radio and Other Measures) Act 2018 on 22 August 2018, and is designed to allow increased scrutiny of foreign investment in Australian media companies and increased transparency as to the levels and sources of foreign investment in such companies.
The new requirements include existing foreign stakeholders making initial disclosure notifications by 28 February 2019, timings for notification of changes of foreign stakeholder status and reporting at the end of each financial year. The new provisions also apply to persons acting on behalf of foreign stakeholders, such as executors, administrators and liquidators.
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