Pauline Hanson has called for a ban on foreigners owning property in Australia amid the housing crisis.
The One Nation leader has taken to talkback radio to demand the change, arguing that government policy on foreign home ownership has exacerbated skyrocketing house prices.
“It was the Australian dream to own your home … the young ones coming through won’t know that,” Senator Hanson said on 2GB.
“It’s estimated we’re about 600,000 short in housing across Australia. People are living in tents, caravans, in parks, it’s just ridiculous in a country like this.
“Stop foreign investment. Don’t allow them to have it … It drives up the cost of housing, puts it out of the reach of young ones or anyone who is wanting to buy their own home.”
Senator Hanson was quick to blame Chinese investors for the majority of foreign ownership, claiming they were spending $7m a day on housing in Australia.
“China is buying up so much property and housing in Australia and it is disgusting and it makes me so mad that the politicians are not doing anything about it,” Senator Hanson said.
“When you look at it, we are short on housing stock for Australians. That’s it. That’s what it is about.”
Foreign investors spent about $2.4bn on properties in 2021-22, a fraction of the $4.5 trillion invested in Australia by foreign economies in that year but a figure that is increasing with every quarter, according to official data.
China makes up the majority of those investing in residential real estate, purchasing $700m in property in the first quarter of 2023.
Senator Hanson said she had been calling for the change “for a long time”, but there was little political will to act.
In order for foreigners to purchase property in Australia, they must buy new properties or vacant lots and are only allowed to snap up an existing property if it’s undergoing a major renovation to increase housing stock.
The senator argued that some investors were skirting the laws but nothing was being done to stop it.
“There’s no proper investigation. That’s the problem,” Senator Hanson said.
“But the governments want it because it’s bringing money into the country. State governments don’t want to get rid of it because they get the stamp duty on housing.”