Information about variations to consent or conditions.
The Act (in section 27) provides that a consent or condition of consent can be revoked by the relevant Minister or Ministers or be varied or added to by the relevant Minister or Ministers with the agreement of the consent holder.
This is intended to provide an appropriate level of flexibility post-consent. An example may be where compliance with a condition has become unachievable due to circumstances outside a consent holder’s control. A consent holder may apply for more time to complete a requirement, or for a variation to the requirement of the relevant condition(s). The fee for a variation application is set out in the fees and penalties page.
If you wish to seek a variation of consent or conditions we suggest that you email the OIO to discuss in the first instance.
Seeking a variation to revoke conditions of consent
In certain circumstances it is also possible for some consent holders to apply to get conditions revoked.
The Act as amended by the Overseas Investment (Urgent Measures) Amendment Act 2020 provides for ‘automatic standing consents’ for certain types of entities or transactions. If you have been granted consent for a transaction that would no longer require consent because of the recent changes, you can apply for a variation to have your conditions of consent revoked.
The Supplementary Ministerial Directive Letter (8 June 2020) issued by the Minister of Finance, directs the OIO how to approach a variation application seeking to revoke conditions. It makes clear that if the transaction no longer requires consent the Government’s expectation is that the conditions of the previous consent should be revoked unless there is a good reason not to.
Section 27 was not amended by the Urgent Measures Act. This means that certain types of conditions cannot lawfully be revoked. Conditions ensuring residential land outcomes, for example, cannot be removed.
The OIO has a new application template for consent holders seeking a revocation of conditions of consent due to changes to the Act in 2020 - called "Application to vary conditions of consent where consent would no longer be required". We have a streamlined process for dealing quickly with these variation applications to achieve a timely outcome for consent holders.