Significant Investor, 188C Visa


Table of Contents

Australian Lawyers and Migration Agents - 188C Significant Investor Visa Advice

Our Australian Immigration Lawyers and Registered Migration Agents are experienced and ethical. We can assist High Net Worth Individual clients in our offices in Brisbane, Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, London, UK and Lisbon, Portugal. In addition our Australian qualified Lawyers can advise clients worldwide, with a fast and efficient Consultation by telephone or Zoom Video call where they advise you about:

  • Visa eligibility assessment
  • Information about the visa process and Residency requirements
  • Advice regarding Source of Funds requirements
  • Advice regarding supporting documents including: Business and Investment financial statements and Identification
  • Preparation of a Statement of Assets and Liabilities
  • Advice regarding State or Territory 188 A, B or C Business or Investor Nomination
  • Advice regarding types of complying investments and referral to an Investment Adviser
  • Assistance with Business Plan for purchase of new or established business and company set-up
  • Assistance in opening an Australian Bank account and guidance regarding international funds transfer
  • Assistance in completion of Dept of Home Affairs Expression of Interest and Visa Application forms
  • Advice regarding how to apply for Police Clearance certificates
  • Preparation of Medical examination and Chest x ray referral letter and advice where to undergo health checks
  • Visa Processing time guidance
  • Information about the Government Visa Application fee and Migration Agent/Lawyer's fees for complete visa application assistance

Contact VisaConnect's Australian Immigration Lawyers and Migration Agents in 2023 for advice and assistance with your 188C Visa - Significant Investor Stream application for Australian permanent residence!

Eligibility Criteria - Significant Investor Stream - 188C Visa

The purpose of the 188C Significant Investor Visa is to contribute to Australia's economy and increase economic stimulus and activity, growth, jobs and investment in different industries, by making a substantial investment in Australian funds.

The Applicant must make a complying investment of at least $5 million AUD for 4 years, in any of the following options, for an application made after the new rules were adopted in July 2015, and then further revisions were made on 1 July 2021. See VisaConnect's PDF document: 188C Visa - Significant Investor Stream in 2023 (opens new window). See the eligibility criteria for the 188C Visa below:

1. Venture Capital Investment - At least $1 million AUD in venture capital and growth private equity funds which invest in start-ups and small private companies. Note that from 1 July 2021, the Venture Capital and Private Equity investment has been increased from 10 to 20 per cent.

1.A. Venture Capital Investment - State of Victoria - Those nominated under the Significant Investor visa streams are permitted to invest in all registered, eligible Victorian Venture Capital funds. All Victorian Venture Capital Limited Partnerships (VCLP) and Early Stage Venture Capital Limited Partnerships (ESVCLP) that are either registered or conditionally registered with the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources are now eligible complying investments. This applies to all nominated for a Significant Investor (188C) visa on or after 1 July 2021.

2. Managed Funds Investment - At least $1.5 million AUD in approved managed funds investing in emerging companies listed on the Australian Stock Exchange. Note that after 1 July 2021, the investment in this element will require a further 30 per cent dedicated to emerging companies.

3. Balancing Investment - At least $2.5 million AUD in managed funds that may invest in a range of assets, including ASX-listed companies, Australian corporate bonds or notes, annuities and commercial real estate and hold the investment continuously for at least 4 years. Note that after 1 July 2021, the balancing investment element has been reduced from 60 to 50 percent.

  • Real Estate - Direct investment in residential real estate is prohibited and indirect investment in residential property through managed funds is limited to about 10%
  • Residency Requirements - The Applicant must live in Australia for at least 160 days over 4 years
  • Business Activities - No Previous Involvement in Unacceptable Business Activities
  • Source of Funds - The funds used for the SIV 188C investment must be unencumbered and lawfully acquired
  • Health and Character - Meet the Character requirement and undergo a medical examination
  • State/Territory Nomination - The Applicant must genuinely intend to live in the State/Territory where the Government Agency nominated them, make a contribution to the State/Territory's economy, and continue their business investment activity after the complying investment matures. The Applicant can apply for Nomination to:

Victoria - State Government of Victoria

New South Wales - NSW Government - NSW Department of Treasury

Queensland - Business & Skilled Migration Queensland

South Australia - Immigration South Australia

Western Australia - Western Australian Business Migration Centre

Australian Capital Territory - Skills Canberra

Tasmania - Tasmanian Government - Migration Tasmania

Northern Territory - Northern Territory Government - Migration NT

Benefits of SIV Visa - Significant Investor Stream

See the benefits of applying for the 188C Significant Investor visa, in 2023 below:

  • No Points Test
  • No Age Limit
  • No Qualifications - No education and no business experience required
  • Minimal English Language Ability - If the Applicant or family members have virtually no English ability, they can still apply. Just require "functional' English language ability (IELTS 4.5 Score)
  • Family Members - Applicant can include Family unit members, and dependent children in the application
  • Mixture of Investments - The Applicant can invest in a combination of investments, based on preference, interest rate and high yield
  • Switch Investments - The Applicant can switch from one Investment to another complying investment during the Provisional visa
  • Live, Work, Study and Make Investments in Australia - After the 188C Provisional visa is granted
  • Processing Time - Fast visa processing time of 8 - 23 months, as at 28 January 2023
  • Visa Valid for 4 Years and 3 months - with multiple entry facility
  • Visa Extension - Apply for a 188C Extension, if required

Requirements for Victoria State Nomination - 188C SIV Visa

To be eligible for Victoria State Nomination, the Applicant/Investor must meet the Department of Home Affairs investment requirements, as listed above, and also meet the Victorian Government requirements:

1. Investment Makes a Contribution to Victoria - The Venture Capital and Growth Private Equity investment is actively sourcing investment in Victoria or the fund provider has an office in Victoria. In addition, the investment in 'Emerging companies' and 'Balancing investment' must prove that Victorian investments are included in the selected investments and the fund provider has an office in Victoria.

2. Sufficient Funds to Settle in Victoria - The applicant investor and their dependents must have available no less than $200,000 AUD to settle in Victoria.

3. Genuine Intention to Live in Victoria - The applicant and family members must have a genuine and realistic commitment to reside in Victoria and continue to contribute to Victoria through investment activity.

4. Agree to Victoria's Nomination Obligations - Confirmation of Victoria's obligations and requirements to maintain the complying investments.

Application Process - Victoria

To apply for the Victorian Significant Investor stream (subclass 188C) visa nomination Applicant's must

  • Make an Expression of Interest with SkillSelect.
  • Prepare Evidence to support your application
  • Review the Supporting Information
  • Submit a nomination application via the Live in Melbourne portal. There is No Cost for a Victorian State Nomination application.
  • Respond to any requests for further information, within 2 weeks. The Processing time for Victoria State Nomination is currently 10 business days.
  • Stay in Australia for up to 5 years on the 188C Visa, and can apply for Permanent residence after 3 years on the 188C Visa.

Bank Accounts - SIV 188C Applicants

The following Australian Banks offer private, customized bank accounts for SIV applicants:

A. Westpac Bank - The SIV Flexible Investment Account - This account is Westpac's Private Wealth investment solution for SIV applicants, which includes:

  • A relationship management service, with multilingual private bankers
  • A comprehensive range of banking and wealth services
  • An experienced team, and dedicated investment specialist
  • An account which can be used to invest in a wide range of complying investments
  • Unique investment solutions

B. ANZ - Private Account - ANZ Private Account's specialist team can provide SIV applicants with all their banking and investment needs to assist them to meet the visa requirements. That includes access to a range of professionally managed investments that comply with SIV criteria and assistance with settling your family into the Australian lifestyle.

C. National Australia Bank - NAB Private Account - To open a NAB Private Account, the applicant must have an annual income of at least $400,000 AUD and investable assets of $1 million AUD outside the family home. NAB Private offers: Relationship banking, Tailored banking solutions, Global markets access, Wealth and Investment advice and Trusts and Philanthropy.

Application Process - Significant Investor Stream

The 188C Visa application process is as follows:

  • 1. Expression of Interest - Submit an Expression of Interest for the 188C Visa and Nominate your State/Territory.
  • 2. Invitation to Apply for Visa - Receive Invitation to apply for 188C SIV Visa from State/Territory Government. Applicant must apply for SIV Visa within 60 days.
  • 3. Apply for 188C Visa - Make a formal application for the Significant Investor Visa, with supporting documents.
  • 4. Make Investment of $5 million AUD - Make the investment of $5 million AUD within the timeframe stipulated by the Case Officer.
  • 5. 188C Provisional Visa is Granted - The Applicant can switch from one Investment to another complying investment during the Provisional visa.
  • 6. Maintain the Investment - Maintain the complying investments for 4 years.

Entitlements after Visa is Granted - 188C Visa

The 188 Visa is a Provisional visa and not a Permanent visa, but the Provisional visa allows Applicants to:

  • Manage and undertake investment activity in Australia
  • Multiple entry travel to Australia. Permitted to enter and remain in Australia for up to 4 years and 3 months
  • Bring eligible members of your family with you, who were included in your 188 Visa application as secondary applicants (eg. Spouse and Dependent children)
  • Apply for a permanent Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) Significant Investor stream if the specific requirements of the 188 Visa are met

888 Visa - Eligibility Criteria - Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent)

After 4 years of maintaining your 188C Investment, an applicant may be eligible to apply for the 888C Visa for Australian Permanent residence, provided they meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • Hold the 188C Visa - Primary or Secondary visa holder of a 188C Visa - Significant Investor Stream.
  • Nomination - The State or Territory Government must confirm that your Nomination is still current.
  • Maintained Complying Investment - The applicants must have held their complying investment of $5 million AUD for at least 4 years and have notified the Department of Home Affairs regarding transfers of any investments to another investment.
  • Complied with Australian Laws - laws regarding taxation, superannuation and employment relations.
  • Functional English - The primary and secondary applicants must prove that they have functional English (IELTS 4.5 for each of the 4 test components).
  • Residence requirement - The Primary Applicant must have been in Australia for at least 160 days cumulatively in 4 years or the Applicant's Spouse must have been in Australia for at least 180 days per year cumulatively, in a 4-year period.
  • Not been Involved in Unacceptable Business Activities.
  • Intend to Continue your Business activities in Australia.
  • Meet Health requirement.
  • Meet Character requirement.
  • No Debts to the Australian Government.
  • No Visa Cancellation or Visa Refusal.

188A, 188B, 188C and 188E - Business Innovation and Investment Visa Advice and Assistance

Office Address and Telephone - VisaConnect Australia

Contact VisaConnect's Consultants at our Brisbane, Queensland, Australia office below:

VisaConnect - Qld, Australia
Level 1, 16 McDougall Street,
Milton, Brisbane,
Queensland 4064

Telephone: (+61) 7 3040 9589