Invasion of The Gold Coast

A mammoth inflow of Japanese money alarms Australians

"Ah, Queensland, beautiful one day, perfect the next," burbles a middle-aged vacationer in a tourist ad for the state in northeastern Australia that has one of the country's most glorious coastlines. In a version written by Australian Comic Gerry Connolly for a TV comedy show, a beaming Japanese businessman delivers the punch line, "Ah, Queensland, beautiful one day, Japanese the next!"

The joke is no laughing matter for Australians, who find themselves alternately pleased and troubled by a $6.4 billion Japanese plunge into Australian real estate over the past three years, primarily in urban hotels and shoreline properties, and by a...

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