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China Vice Premier urges more action to ease home prices

BEIJING: China should take further decisive action to cool its housing market, Vice Premier Li Keqiang was quoted as saying, underscoring difficulties faced by the government in taming property prices.

In remarks published by Xinhua late on Feb 24, Li said China's government needs to effectively curb speculative buying of homes while raising the supply of affordable housing.

A short supply of homes, rising incomes, negative saving rates and quickening inflation have all combined to push China's property market to record highs.

Worried that sky-high home prices could stir social unrest, China's government has taken a slew of measures to calm the property market, including raising interest and mortgage rates.

Li, the presumed heir apparent to Premier Wen Jiabao, vouched that China would build 10 million units of affordable housing this year.

To increase the supply of residential property, Li said the government would also guide bank lending and private investment towards the building of more homes. - Reuters

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