Overseas Investment: New Zealand’S Approach to Balancing the Benefits of Overseas Investment against Protecting Sensitive Land & Business Assets and the Interests of Future Generations

48 Pages Posted: 4 Feb 2021

See all articles by Myra Williamson

Myra Williamson

University of Waikato; Kuwait International Law School

Date Written: December 5, 2020

Abstract

This paper examines the law and policy nexus in the context of overseas investment law, primarily in New Zealand. It examines the difficulties of balancing the need for overseas investment-especially in land and business assets-against the need to protect a country's interests and in doing so the paper traverses a range of legal and policy issues.

Section one provides an introduction to the issues of overseas investment in land by foreigners/expatriates or overseas persons.Section two briefly describes the context to overseas investment in New Zealand. It provides a brief primer on the issue of the ‘foreign buyers ban’ for the non-New Zealand. Section three explores some key features of New Zealand’s current legislative framework. Section four moves into the policy space by raising the question of how governments can achieve ‘intergenerational justice’ by focusing on sustainable investment. There it is argued that the current New Zealand legislation may achieve intergenerational justice by preventing overseas investors from buying up sensitive land on an unlimited basis, but more action is needed to achieve that goal. Section five offers a brief set of recommendations for other governments to consider when framing (or reframing) their policy position and their laws on overseas investment.

Keywords: overseas investment, foreign investment, foreign direct investment, FDI, greenfield investment, housing, sensitive land, investment in business assets, law and policy nexus, sustainable investment, sustainable development, inter-generational justice, inter-generational equity, housing affordability

JEL Classification: 130, 131, 139, K00, K11, K29, R21, R28, R31, R38, G00, G11, G18, P14, P28, P42, P45

Suggested Citation

Williamson, Myra, Overseas Investment: New Zealand’S Approach to Balancing the Benefits of Overseas Investment against Protecting Sensitive Land & Business Assets and the Interests of Future Generations (December 5, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3747335 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3747335

Myra Williamson (Contact Author)

University of Waikato ( email )

New Zealand

Kuwait International Law School ( email )

Block 4, Building 800005
Doha City, Jahra 93151
Kuwait

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