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The year started with a continuing high demand for Australian commercial real estate assets, but by March the pandemic had hit, and investors had to re-evaluate their approach to their portfolio and future investments to align with the new reality and to prepare for the post-COVID world. Although transaction volumes decreased, particularly during the first half of the year, by the end of the year the bounce back had begun with investors focusing on logistics assets and less traditional sectors such as healthcare and data centres.

Australian Governments were pro-active in addressing the economic impact of COVID to minimise the period of disruption. The government introduced significant short term stimulus to mitigate the adverse impacts of COVID, including the flagship Jobkeeper program which aimed to subsidise businesses to help them survive, and measures to protect tenants adversely impacted by the lockdown of the economy.

During this most unique of years, tax and duty issues continued to evolve. And although a significant amount of ATO resources were devoted to administering COVID related initiatives, there were developments in the ATO’s approach to a variety of tax issues in the real estate sector.

The Australian Real Estate Taxes: 2020 Year in Review seeks to provide a recap on the key tax and duty themes that arose for investors in Australian real estate assets in 2020 and looks ahead to consider two issues that will be front of mind for investors in 2021.

Key highlights

  

  • COVID and income taxes.
  • Developments in cross border financing arrangements during 2020.
  • The increasing role of the ATO in FIRB applications.
  • Stapled structures and non-concessional MIT income.
  • Sovereign immunity: new rules, new issues.
  • Build to rent continues to be an emerging asset class in Australia.
  • GST update.
  • Stamp duty and land tax update.
  • Looking ahead to 2021.


Get in touch with your KPMG contact to discuss these and any other matters in relation to Australian real estate.

2020 year in review webinar

  

KPMG contacts

  

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