This page explains the assessment process the OIO will generally follow for all consents except those involving one home to live in, for which the process is simpler.

This page explains the assessment process the OIO will generally follow for all consents except those involving one home to live in, for which the process is simpler.

Step one: Acceptance

When we receive your application, we will check it to see if it is complete.

If your application is incomplete, we will let you know what is outstanding. We will not start working on the application until it is accepted.

If your application is complete, we will provisionally accept it and send you an invoice for the relevant fee. When the fee is paid, your application will be fully accepted and assessment will begin.

In our acceptance letter we will tell you who will assess the application, and how long it will take. For more information about timeframes, see Assessment timeframes.

Percentage of applications returned at acceptance at QA by month

Chart showing monthly figures for applications returned at QA. See table below for more information

*Current month's stats are month-to-date

MonthPercentage returned
March 202019%
April 20206%
May 202015%
June 20200%
July 202012%
August 202021%
September 202016%
October 20205%
November 202010%
December 202010%
January 20210%
February 202119%
March 202123%

Step two: Assessment

During assessment we will consider all relevant aspects of both:

We will start to form a view on whether the requirements of the Act are met and whether our recommendation should be to grant or decline the application.

We may ask questions or ask you for further information during our assessment. You will be advised as early as possible if we intend to recommend that the decision maker decline consent. For more information on this, see The decline process.

During assessment, we may determine that it will take more time that we originally expected. If this happens, we will notify you as soon as possible.

During the assessment process we will require you to make these statutory declarations:

  • A declaration verifying that the information contained in the application is true and correct (refer section 23(1)(d) of the Overseas Investment Act 2005
  • Declaration(s) that the individuals with control of the relevant overseas person are of good character or are not unsuitable to own or control a sensitive New Zealand asset.

When we request the statutory declarations, we will send you the relevant templates to use. For more information see Preparing a statutory declaration to the OIO.

If we plan to impose special conditions, we may give you an opportunity to comment on the draft consent and the conditions that will apply to your consent, before the OIO or Ministers make a decision.

The conditions include:         

  • Special conditions that will apply only to you and were the most important considerations that particularly influenced our decision to give consent.
  • Standard conditions that we expect will apply to all overseas people who are given consent to acquire sensitive New Zealand land or significant business assets.
  • Reporting conditions that require you to provide information to us either regularly or when particular events occur.

See examples of our consent and conditions templates in the attachments section below.

You should read the conditions carefully and make sure you put processes in place so you can meet them.  This is important because if you do not meet the conditions, you may be required to dispose of the land and/or be subject to fines or other penalties.

The decision-maker will decide what conditions should be imposed. These may be different to the draft conditions sent to you for comment.

Note that section 25B of the Overseas Investment Act 2005 also imposes the following 2 conditions on every consent granted:

  • The information provided by each applicant to the OIO or the Ministers in connection with the application was correct at the time it was provided.
  • Each consent holder must comply with the representations and plans they made or submitted in support of the application and were notified by the OIO as having been taken into account when consent was granted, unless compliance should reasonably be excused.

Step three: Decision

The OIO will either decide on your application under delegation, or submit its recommendation to the relevant Ministers. For more information about whether decisions are made by Ministers or the OIO see Delegated Powers.

Ministers are not bound to follow the OIO’s recommendation.

We will notify you of the decision and provide you with a notice of decision. We will also provide a draft decision summary of the information we propose to publish on our website for your comment.

If consent is granted, we will also list the conditions imposed on that consent.

Step four: Publication

Once we have your comments on the draft decision summary, we will decide on the final content of the decision summary and publicly release it on our website. This happens at the end of the month following the month in which the application was decided, e.g. if an application is decided on 15 March, the decision would be published on 30 April.

Read more about privacy and confidentiality of the information in your application

Last Updated: 7 April 2021