Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB), 

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Who Are We?

The Foreign Investment Review Board (the Board) is a non statutory body established in 1976 to advise the Treasurer and the Government on Australia’s Foreign Investment Policy (the Policy) and its administration.

The Board's functions are advisory only. Responsibility for making decisions on the Policy and proposals rests with the Treasurer. The Treasury's Foreign Investment and Trade Policy Division (the Division) provides secretariat services to the Board and is responsible for the day to day administration of the arrangements.

The role of the Board, including through its secretariat, is to:

  • examine proposed investments in Australia that are subject to the Policy, the Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Act 1975 (the Act) and supporting legislation, and to make recommendations to the Treasurer and other Treasury portfolio ministers on these proposals;
  • advise the Treasurer on the operation of the Policy and the Act;
  • foster an awareness and understanding, both in Australia and abroad, of the Policy and the Act;
  • provide guidance to foreign persons and their representatives or agents on the Policy and the Act;
  • monitor and ensure compliance with the Policy and the Act; and
  • provide advice to the Treasurer on the Policy and related matters.

Board membership:

The Board currently comprises four part-time Members and a full-time Executive Member.

Photo of Brian Wilson

Mr Brian Wilson was appointed to the Board on 10 December 2009 and appointed Chairman on 16 April 2012. He is also Deputy Chancellor of University of Technology, Sydney, a non-executive director of Bell Financial Group and a member of the Payments System Board of the Reserve Bank of Australia. He was a member of the Commonwealth Government Review of Australia's Superannuation System and of the Specialist Reference Group on the Taxation of Multinational Enterprises in Australia and is currently a member of the ATO Superannuation Reform Steering Committee. Mr Wilson retired in 2009 as a Managing Director of the global investment bank Lazard, after co-founding the firm in Australia in 2004 and was previously a Vice-Chairman of Citigroup Australia and its predecessor companies.

Photo of Anna Buduls

Ms Anna Buduls was appointed to the Board on 15 July 2010. Through her corporate advisory work and 21 years of non-executive company directorships, Ms Buduls has gained wide commercial experience across a broad range of companies and industries, including the agriculture sector. She is currently owner and Chairman of a travel software group, and is a non-executive director of the listed company SAI Global Ltd (since October 2003). Ms Buduls was also one of the three Australian members on the APEC Business Advisory Council for three years to the end of 2014.

Photo of Michael D’Ascenzo

Mr Michael D’Ascenzo AO was appointed to the Board with effect from 2 January 2013. Mr D’Ascenzo is recognised internationally for his leadership and expertise in taxation, administration, governance and policy. Mr D’Ascenzo was Commissioner of Taxation from January 2006 to December 2012. In January 2010 he was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia for service to public administration, and in 2012 he was awarded the Chartered Accountants' Federal Government Leader of the Year. Mr D'Ascenzo is currently also a non-executive director of Australia Post and a member of the Clean Energy Regulator, as well as an adjunct professor at UNSW and a professorial fellow at Melbourne University.

Photo of Patrick Secker

Mr Patrick Secker, appointed on 17 December 2013, brings extensive agricultural sector experience to the Board.  He was a primary producer, agricultural retailer and company director before entering politics as the member for the rural South Australian electorate of Barker.  Mr Secker has a degree in economics and has participated in a number of parliamentary agricultural committees over many years.  His parliamentary career included serving positions as Opposition Whip and Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Photo of Rob Donelly

Mr Rob Donelly commenced his appointment as Executive Member of the Board on 15 September 2014. Over the past 15 years, Mr Donelly has performed a range of senior financial and policy roles, in both the ACT and Australian Public Service. He served as Treasury’s Chief Financial Officer from 2008 to 2012, and worked on income tax and superannuation policy from 2013 until his appointment in 2014.