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Agricultural Land and Water Ownership (Survey of)
 
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    NAME OF ORGANISATION
    Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)

    OVERVIEW


The ALWOS will collect and provide information on direct foreign ownership of: agricultural land; water rights; and businesses undertaking agricultural activities in Australia.

    PURPOSE
  • The 2013 ALWOS collection will meet a known data gap for national-level information on foreign ownership of agricultural land.
  • Specifically the survey will provide national and (where publishable) state/territory level data on:

      a) foreign ownership of agricultural businesses in Australia;

      b) foreign ownership of Australian agricultural land; and

      c) foreign ownership of water entitlements (used for agricultural purposes) in Australia.



    SCOPE
  • The scope and coverage of the 2013 ALWOS collection will be consistent with the 2010 ALWOS to maximise comparability.
  • The reference period for the 2013 ALWOS is as at the 30th June 2013.
  • The scope of the collection will be businesses undertaking agricultural activity represented on the ABS Business Register (ABSBR). The size cut-off is an Estimated Value of Agricultural Operations (EVAO) or Standardised Business Activity Statement (BAS) Total Sales (SBTS) of $5,000 or greater. Data from the ABR and the Australian Tax Office (ATO) is extensively used to populate and maintain the ABSBR.
  • The frame for the ALWOS will be drawn from the March 2013 Common Frame. Additional information sourced from the ATO indicating possible foreign ownership will be appended to the unit records on the frame. The coverage of the frame is considered to be of high quality.
  • Information will be fed back to the ABSBR based on standard independent and dependent source feedback rules. Additionally, information on foreign ownership of agricultural businesses, land and water entitlements will be retained for future collections and stored on the ABSBR.


    DATA DETAIL

    Conceptual framework


Not applicable. ALWOS does not have a need for a specific collection framework.

    Main outputs
The outputs from the survey will be:

Foreign ownership of Australian agricultural businesses
- Count
- Percentage

Foreign ownership of Australian agricultural land
- Area of Holding
- Percentage

Foreign ownership of Australian water rights (used for agricultural purposes)
- Volume of Water
- Percentage

Information will be released, subject to confidentiality and quality constraints, at the National and State level and National by Industry (ANZSIC) group level.

    Classifications
    Standards used in ALWOS include:

    A - Geographical regions
    State


    B - Industry ( ANZSIC )


    Other concepts (summary)

  • The concepts of agricultural business and foreign ownership will be defined and measured using existing ABS standards and methods.
  • The meaning of water rights in ALWOS is limited to entitlements for use on agricultural land.
  • Foreign ownership has been defined as where an individual, enterprise or other organisation that does not usually reside in Australia owns part of the business, either directly or through an enterprise or organisation that does usually reside in Australia.
  • Holders of agricultural land leases of five years or longer are determined to be owners of the land for the purposes of this survey as determined through discussions with key stakeholders, including The Treasury.

Definitions as they appear on the form:

  • Foreign ownership is where an individual, enterprise or other organisation that does not usually reside in Australia owns part of the business, either directly or through an enterprise or organisation that does usually reside in Australia.
  • An individual, enterprise or organisation usually resides in Australia if it was resident in Australia for six months or more during the previous twelve months.
    Excluding
    • Any bank or other overseas financial institution that holds a mortgage for this business
  • Water entitlement – a perpetual or ongoing entitlement to exclusive access to a share of water from a specified source as defined in the relevant water plan.
    Including
    • Surface water entitlements and ground water entitlements
    • Water purchased from commercial/private irrigation schemes
    Excluding
    • Town/tap water
    • Water accessed without an entitlement



    GEOGRAPHIC DETAIL
    Australia
    New South Wales
    Victoria
    Queensland
    South Australia
    Western Australia
    Tasmania
    Northern Territory
    ACT

    Comments and/or Other Regions


    COLLECTION FREQUENCY
    Adhoc

    Frequency comments
    ALWOS will be run as a stand alone survey in 2013 and 2018. It will incorporated as a supplementary survey in the 2016 and 2021 Agricultural Census.

    COLLECTION HISTORY

  • In September 2011, the ABS released the results of the first Agricultural Land and Water Ownership Survey (ALWOS). This provided data on direct foreign ownership of: agricultural land; water rights; and businesses undertaking agricultural activities in Australia, as at December 2010.
  • The ALWOS was designed to deliver national estimates with data by state/territory or by industry where available and fit for purpose. Key stakeholders, including The Treasury and the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) (including the Australian Bureau of Agriculture and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES)) were consulted on the information requirements and priorities to be delivered from the ALWOS.
  • Survey data was collected from March 2011 to May 2011, via a paper-based form sent to approximately 11,000 businesses across Australia that were identified as undertaking agricultural activity. Results of the survey were released on 9 September 2011 in Agricultural Land and Water Ownership, December 2010 (cat. no. 7127.0).
  • On 18 January 2012 the Government announced it would fund ongoing and expanded statistical data collection by the ABS on foreign ownership of agricultural land and water entitlements.
  • This included a stand-alone sample survey in 2013 and 2018, and additional information being collected from supplementary surveys from the 2016 and 2021 Agricultural Censuses. The 2013 survey will collect the same information as 2010 to enable a time series comparison. Data on the value of agricultural production from foreign-owned land will be considered for collection via the 2016 Agricultural Census.


    DATA AVAILABILITY
    Yes

    Data availability comments



    DATE OF LAST UPDATE FOR THIS DOCUMENT
    01/08/2014 03:48 PM



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