Wednesday 19 September 2018

China ups ante in campaign against property speculation

Beijing is one of 30 Chinese cities being targeted as part of a campaign aimed at rooting out violations in the housing market
Beijing is one of 30 Chinese cities being targeted as part of a campaign aimed at rooting out violations in the housing market

Bloomberg News

China has escalated a crackdown on property speculation, saying it is embarking on a six-month campaign in 30 cities to root out violations in the housing market.

The special campaign will target unlicensed real estate agencies, developers' violations and false advertising, according to a statement from the housing ministry.

Cities including Beijing and Shanghai will be involved in the six-month operation starting this month, according to the statement, which said officials will focus on rent manipulation, postponement of sales by developers to fetch higher prices and non-compliant loans to fund down-payments.

Regulators' multi-year campaign to cool home prices in China gathered steam this week, with officials ratcheting up pressure on the sector on multiple fronts.

The nation's policy banks tightened approvals on new lending for shanty-town redevelopment projects. China is looking to plug a loophole in companies' offshore bond sales by banning short-dated dollar note issuance, people familiar with the matter said.

The National Development and Reform Commission also said Chinese developers should use proceeds from overseas bond sales to repay debt instead of investing in domestic property projects and replenishing working capital.

China's home prices rose by the most in 19 months in May, even as the government pressed ahead with curbs to cool housing demand.

New-home prices in 70 cities tracked by the government gained 0.8pc from a month earlier, according to Bloomberg calculations based on data from the National Bureau of Statistics released recently. That compared with a 0.57pc increase in April.

The housing ministry said it will regularly expose violations to "shake the market."

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