Aerial view of Maryborough, the pocket, Downer EDI.
Aerial view of Maryborough, the pocket, Downer EDI. Megan Pope

Thai owners invest $1.2m in Fraser Coast land

THE Fraser Coast is a sardine compared to the big fish in the sea of Queensland foreign land investment.

Department of Natural Resources and Mining data shows overseas interests spent $1.76m on 237.987ha of the region's land last year.

Interests from Thailand spent the most on the Fraser Coast with $1.2m fetching 158.367ha.

New Zealand investors were hot on their heels as they grabbed 7.876ha for $420,000.

United Kingdom investors spent $140,000 on 71.744ha.

Fraser Coast Real Estate Institute of Queensland zone chairwoman Linda Bland said the turnover was small compared with the region's property turnover.

"I don't think that we've noticed that there's been a big change or demand over the last year or so - in comparison to the rest of the market, it's still a very small proportion," Ms Bland said.

"Generally, the REIQ supports foreign investment because - with the rules by the Foreign Investment Review Board - it's really about creating extra stock and expanding the opportunities for affordable housing in the area and that's certainly an ongoing issue - there's not really enough stock."

Ms Bland said more international investors were needed.

"Any policy that supports providing more affordable housing is just going to benefit the region," she said.

"I don't know if it's something the regions can do, but with more policy structures to provide incentives, the region would generally support it.

"Our region is generally reliant on the construction industry and anything that creates more construction, more jobs and contributes to the economy.

"I'd certainly like to see any investment - whether it be foreign or otherwise that's good for the market."

Property investment expert Dr Andrew Wilson, of the Domain Group, said attracting international investors was vital for a strong economy.

"It is money coming into the country and foreign exchange is part of trade, so that's a positive because it does add to the wealth of our country - it's an import of capital," Dr Wilson said.

"It's an opportunity from that import of capital to create higher levels of investment and that's part of activating economic activity."

FOREIGN INVESTMENT

  • The value and amount of Fraser Coast land bought by foreign interests in 2013-14.
  • Thailand: 158.367 hectares, value $1,200,000
  • New Zealand: 7.876 hectares, value $420,000
  • United Kingdom: 71.744 hectares, value $140,000
  • Total: 237.987 hectares, value $1.760m
  • Source: the Department of Natural Resources and Mining.


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