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Foreign investment statistics

Statistics on who invests in Australia

Foreign economies had a total of $4.1 trillion invested in Australia at the end of 2021.

Which economies invest in Australia?

The United States and United Kingdom are the biggest investors in Australia, followed by Belgium, Japan and Hong Kong (SAR of China).

China is our eighth largest foreign investor, with 2.2 per cent of the total. However, the levels of Hong Kong (SAR of China) and Chinese investment in Australia have grown significantly over the past decade.

The table below shows the top 20 foreign investors in Australia at the end of 2021. Yearly values are in A$ billion and include both direct, portfolio investment and other investment.

Which economies invest in Australia?
2021, A$ billion

Rank in 2021 Economy 2019 2020 2021 % of total % change 2020 to 2021 5-year trend
% growth
1 United States 1,014.3 927.3 1,053.0 25.5 13.6 3.1
2 United Kingdom 723.9 769.8 718.6 17.4 -6.7 8.5
3 Belgium (a) 348.0 408.6 393.5 9.5 -3.7 8.6
4 Japan 244.5 265.1 258.7 6.3 -2.4 3.6
5 Hong Kong (SAR of China) 144.3 141.1 126.9 3.1 -10.1 5.8
6 Singapore 98.9 116.0 121.4 2.9 4.6 7.0
7 Luxembourg 87.5 107.0 92.5 2.2 -13.5 6.0
8 China 80.6 81.2 91.8 2.2 13.0 3.5
9 Netherlands 88.9 84.2 87.4 2.1 3.8 2.3
10 Canada 60.5 66.3 76.5 1.8 15.3 13.0
11 Switzerland 58.4 61.9 69.2 1.7 11.8 3.7
12 New Zealand 66.5 68.4 69.1 1.7 1.0 10.9
13 Germany 50.6 47.7 50.0 1.2 4.8 2.0
14 France 34.6 42.9 43.4 1.0 1.1 10.4
15 Bermuda 45.1 42.4 42.6 1.0 0.4 -0.6
16 Ireland 29.9 37.6 40.1 1.0 6.4 10.6
17 Republic of Korea 31.3 31.1 29.8 0.7 -4.1 4.0
18 Norway 25.1 25.6 28.3 0.7 10.7 11.5
19 India 16.1 np 27.8 0.7 .. ..
20 Virgin Islands, British 24.4 25.3 23.7 0.6 -6.4 0.1
  All economies 3,923.7 4,043.8 4,136.1 100.0 2.3 5.4

(a) The majority of total investment from Belgium is portfolio investment liabilities in the form of debt securities (Belgium hosts a major clearing house and depository for euro-denominated bonds and other securities, Euroclear).
np = not publish ..= not meaningful
Based on ABS catalogue 5352.0. Last Updated: May 2022.

How does this compare with other economies?

Australia has the 14th-highest amount of direct foreign inward investment in the world.

The table below shows how our level of direct inward investment compared with other economies in 2020. Yearly values are in US$ billion.

Economies ranked by direct foreign inward investment
2020, US$ billion

Rank in 2020 Economy 2018 2019 2020 % of total % change 2019 to 2020 5-year trend
% growth
1 United States 7,333.5 9,398.4 10,802.6 26.1 14.9 12.8
2 Netherlands 1,492.6 1,491.7 2,890.6 7.0 93.8 13.5
3 United Kingdom 1,930.5 2,045.1 2,206.2 5.3 7.9 8.5
4 China 1,628.3 1,769.5 1,918.8 4.6 8.4 9.4
5 Hong Kong (SAR of China) 1,963.3 1,867.7 1,884.9 4.6 0.9 3.7
6 Singapore 1,548.8 1,751.2 1,855.4 4.5 5.9 12.0
7 Switzerland 1,418.5 1,453.9 1,536.3 3.7 5.7 7.7
8 Ireland 1,048.6 1,152.4 1,350.1 3.3 17.2 9.0
9 Canada 844.8 1,062.7 1,099.9 2.7 3.5 5.7
10 Germany 940.6 934.7 1,059.3 2.6 13.3 5.8
11 France 820.6 868.7 968.1 2.3 11.4 7.0
12 British Virgin Islands 865.2 909.3 950.9 2.3 4.6 5.0
13 Spain 745.4 763.2 853.3 2.1 11.8 8.6
14 Australia 701.3 731.2 790.7 1.9 8.1 6.5
15 Belgium 563.5 577.1 635.9 1.5 10.2 2.6
16 Luxembourg 154.4 128.4 627.4 1.5 388.5 12.5
17 Brazil 568.7 705.0 608.1 1.5 -13.8 6.8
18 Mexico 515.0 567.7 596.8 1.4 5.1 7.4
19 Italy 433.4 444.5 485.8 1.2 9.3 7.4
20 Cyprus 433.8 451.4 480.9 1.2 6.5 4.3
  Other economies 6,833.3 7,303.5 7,752.3 18.7 6.1 6.1
  All economies 32,784.1 36,377.4 41,354.2 100.0 13.7 4.5

Source: UNCTAD World Investment Report - Annex tables. Last Updated: October 2021.

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