This comment was made this week at http://www.macrobusiness.com.au (link may be locked)
It will be interesting to see how this works in practice with Mr Robb trumpeting FTAs where no questions are asked for investments up to a billion dollars.
What exactly does Mr Robb think we should be selling no questions asked for up to a billion dollars?
Perhaps to make the objective of foreign investment clearer they should rename the incompetent FIRB to something a bit more accurate.
Productive Foreign Investment Approval and Audit Authority.
Then it would be implicit that the only Foreign Investment that is welcomed is productive investment.
That would immediately rule out banks seeking foreign investment for residential mortgage lending and government seeking foreign investment in govt bonds.
Both are dud unproductive forms of foreign investment.
If foreigners wish to productively invest in residential property they can invest in new construction directly or via RMBS.
Government should never borrow off shore.
It just encourages them to spend money they could not convince locals to contribute and creates a foreign claim on our future national income.