7127.0 - Agricultural Land and Water Ownership, 2015-16 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 13/09/2017   
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OWNERSHIP OF AGRICULTURAL BUSINESSES

At 30 June 2016 there were an estimated 124,568 businesses nationally with agricultural land holdings with an estimated value of agricultural operations of $5,000 or greater. Of these businesses 608 (or 0.5%) reported some level of foreign ownership, a proportion remaining relatively steady since 2013.

Most states and territories have less than one percent of their agricultural businesses with some level of foreign ownership, with the lowest rate in Queensland (0.3% of businesses). The Northern Territory has the highest rate of foreign ownership amongst its agricultural businesses (6.9%).

Of the 608 businesses nationally reporting some level of foreign ownership, 76% reported they were more than 50% foreign owned. This level varied by state with higher levels of foreign ownership in agricultural businesses in Victoria and Queensland. (95% and 81% respectively were more than 50% foreign owned), while in South Australia and Western Australia the level of foreign ownership was lower (51% and 63% of foreign owned businesses in these states were more than 50% foreign owned).

The proportion of businesses in each state and territory that were wholly Australian owned is illustrated in the map below.

Map: Percentage of agricultural businesses wholly Australian owned


The majority of businesses with some level of foreign ownership (35.6% or 217 businesses) were concentrated in the sheep, beef cattle and grain farming industry (ANZSIC 014). The dairy industry (ANZSIC 016) contained 19.4% (or 118) of businesses with a level of foreign ownership and the fruit and nut industry (ANZSIC 013) had 16.5% (or 101 businesses). Together these three industries comprised slightly under 72% of all businesses with some level of foreign ownership.

The proportion of wholly Australian-owned businesses by industry is illustrated by the graph below.

Graph Image for Proportion of agricultural businesses wholly Australian owned