DeSantis Cracks Down on China Buying Land in Florida

DeSantis Cracks Down on China Buying Land in Florida

Chris Nelson
Chris Nelson
November 14, 2023

Gov. Ron DeSantis continues to crack down on China and other "countries of concern" who try to purchase land in Florida.

Today, DeSantis announced the launch of the SecureFlorida Portal, where foreign principals from foreign countries of concern like China must register property. These registration requirements for foreign principals were created by Senate Bill 264—signed by Governor DeSantis in May as part of what the Governor's office calls "the strongest legislation in the nation counteracting the malign influence of the People’s Republic of China and other countries of concern".

The front page of the SecureFlorida Portal has a link where properties can be registered or searched.

“Protecting Floridians and Florida’s infrastructure from agents like the Chinese Communist Party and other foreign adversaries is important to our state’s security,” said Governor Ron DeSantis.“I am proud to have signed the strongest legislation in the nation to fight back against foreign malign influence.”

This comes after fellow 2024 Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley was called out for claiming Gov. DeSantis was unwilling to do end trade relations with China. DeSantis has said multiple times that he would "declare independence from China economically" and that he supports decoupling from China and ending "most favored trade status" with China.

This status has created controversy because of its sales of sensitive military technology and China's serious and continuous persecution of human rights. China's MFN status was made permanent on December 27, 2001.

"She welcomed them into South Carolina, gave them land near a military base, wrote the Chinese ambassador a love letter saying what a great friend they were," said DeSantis. "I banned China from owning land in this state."

Section 692.204 of the Florida statute limits the ability of individuals and businesses affiliated with the People’s Republic of China or the Chinese Communist Party to acquire real property in Florida and requires the registration of all real property owned within the state. Under section 692.203, foreign principals from other countries of concern may acquire property located within 10 miles of a military installation or critical infrastructure facility only under limited circumstances and must register such property with FloridaCommerce.

“I’m grateful for the Governor’s leadership on this issue that is critical to both our national security and the security of Florida’s economy,” said Florida Secretary of Commerce J. Alex Kelly.“Under Governor DeSantis’s leadership, Florida is in the driver’s seat and our Freedom First policies are setting the stage for a robust and efficient supply chain.”

If a foreign principal owned or acquired an interest in real property before July 1, 2023, then the foreign principal must register the property by December 31, 2023. A foreign principal that fails to timely file a registration with FloridaCommerce is subject to a civil penalty of $1,000 for each day the registration is late. Entities and property owners can register a property through the SecureFlorida portal here.

FloridaCommerce will host a technical assistance webinar on Tuesday, November 21, 2023, at 11 a.m. to provide an instructional walkthrough of the portal. Register for the webinar here.

DeSantis's actions come as President Joe Biden is set to meet with Chinas' Xi Jinping in San Francisco.

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Chris Nelson

Chris Nelson

Chris Nelson is a videographer and investigative reporter based in Fort Lauderdale. Chris covers breaking news, and local and state politics, and focuses on Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. His work has been cited on Fox News and Epoch Times.

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