The Property Council of Australia has welcomed the introduction of the Government’s legislative package on stapled structures and managed investment trusts.

“The presentation of these Bills is another step towards providing greater certainty around the rules for institutional investment in real estate benefiting millions of Australians’ retirement savings,” said Property Council Chief Executive Ken Morrison.

“After an extensive consultation process with industry on the Bills, it’s now important that they are passed without further delay,” Mr Morrison said.

The final package brought to Parliament is broadly consistent with draft legislation provided earlier this year and strongly supports the existing policy framework for ‘traditional’ real estate classes. It allows Build-to-Rent housing to be included within a managed investment trust, although with higher withholding tax rates. Further clarity has been provided on the impact of withholding taxes on agricultural land held for future development purposes.

“The priority now must be passage of the bills to provide the long-term certainty which is the most important thing for property funds and investors,” Mr Morrison said.

“The review of stapled groups has now been underway for 18 months and it is important that the market has resolution of these issues.

“While noting the bills have been referred to a Senate committee for inquiry, we will be encouraging their adoption as they stand to avoid further uncertainty and delay.

“Importantly, the bills acknowledge and support the transparency and professionalism of Australia’s institutional real estate sector which is world-leading.

“The Government’s approach recognises that the existing stapled structure arrangements are the best way to promote the interests of almost 15 million Australians who have investments in commercial real estate through their super funds.

“We welcome the consultative approach taken by the Government on these stapled structure settings under the former Treasurer, Scott Morrison, which has led to this milestone,” Mr Morrison said.

Media contact:  Matt Francis | M 0467 777 220 |  E [email protected]