Mark Williams, director of greater China and Asia for the Ray White Group, represented the Ray White network of 1,000 franchisees at the built environment delegation for Australia Week in China (AWIC), led by Andrew Rob, federal minister for trade and investment.
“The Australian Government delegation was the best I have participated in, and was sincerely received by the Chinese participants including government officials, developers, investors and businesses alike,” Mr Williams said.
“I think they appreciated the enormous effort of Andrew Rob and Tony Abbott.”
There were 1,600 attendees at the AWIC lunch with Tony Abbott at the Shanghai Expo Centre.
“Australia has very much cemented itself as a destination of interest for real estate investment and development out of greater China.
“The momentum and pipeline of interest is strong and growing. I don’t believe any fluctuations in the economic environment of either Australia or China will slow this trend.
“We can expect to see significant capital into all sectors of Australian real estate from China over the next 12 months and beyond.
“We have noticed increased interest in tourism, mixed use development and rural assets. A common request is for assets such as diary farms, hotels and resorts.
“While participation in development sites in the key cities of Melbourne, Perth and Sydney has been strong for many years now, we are starting to receive substantial interest in regional and holiday areas of Australia, such as Cairns and the Gold Coast,” Mr Williams explains.
Mr Williams says education is still the main driver for residential investment in Australia by Chinese families. Australia’s lifestyle, climate and quality property offering is a major attraction.
“The significant investment visa program and its process is now well-known and understood by Chinese residents and this topic usually leads their conversations.
“Based upon the volume of enquiry and questions we are receiving about the significant investment visa program, we would expect large increases in applications to follow.
“One Sector to watch is lifestyle residential purchases by mainland Chinese, as tourism numbers increase and they explore more of Australia. Together with investment in hotels, resorts and regional centres, we believe individual investment will follow this trend into lifestyle apartments and homes over the coming years,” Mr Williams concludes.