16 Jun 2012

Foreign ownership register for farm land tipped

5:40 am on 16 June 2012

The Australian government has flagged that it may introduce a foreign ownership register for agricultural land.

It says while the government welcomes foreign investment, it wants to make it more transparent.

The ABC reports the Opposition has been pushing for greater scrutiny of foreign ownership of farmland.

The federal government maintains only about 6% of Australia's agricultural land is foreign-owned, and that figure has barely changed since the 1980s.

But Agriculture Minister Joe Ludwig says the government register could provide more comprehensive information.

Senator Ludwig and Assistant Treasurer David Bradbury say they will set up a working group to look at how a register could be created without duplicating bureaucracy.