The government has no legal recourse if Moon Lake Investments does not come through with jobs and financial investment promises for the Van Dieman’s Land dairy company.
The relevation was made in a Senate estimates hearing on Tuesday night after questions on the 2015 sale to the overseas company from Tasmanian Greens Senator Peter Whish-Wilson to the Treasury department foreign investment division representatives.
Senator Whish-Wilson asked whether promises by the company to invest $100 million over five years into the farming property and business, and to increase job numbers from 140 to 235, were conditions that would be audited.
Treasury spokeswoman Victoria Anderson said the department had expanded its resources to tend to foreign investment compliance matters and it was conducting 11 audits of several high-risk cases.
"At this stage, the outcomes of those audits are fairly positive in terms of compliance with the conditions imposed," she said.
She said the undertakings by Moon Lake were not legally binding
"But obviously those issues go to reputation and character of the investor and could be taken into account later on should the same investor wish to make another investment," Ms Anderson said.
The Van Dieman’s Land company, bought by Moon Lake, produces around 100 million litres of milk a year which is then sold to the Chinese market.
The company is Australia’s largest dairy company.
Five non-executive directors quit the company’s board last month and chief executive Evan Rolley will not renew his contract after June 30.