Politician calls for scrutiny of Qatar agricultural firm in Australia

An Australian senator has voiced concerns about reports that Hassad Australia – a subsidiary of Qatar state-backed firm Hassad Food – has failed to turn a profit since launching in 2010, saying it warrants an inspection by his country’s Foreign Investment Review Board, according to the Australian Financial Review.

Liberal Bill Heffernan was quoted this week as saying, “We welcome foreign investment, as long as it is done on a level playing field.” Hassad Australia stated in 2014 that it was initially established to boost Qatar’s food security, but that its business requirements have changed “to a totally commercial outcome.”

Editor’s note: Hassad Australia subsequently defended its financial record in an interview with the Australian Financial Review.

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