Hong Kong property "good bet," Hang Lung’s Chan says

HONG KONG: Hong Kong’s home market will be a “good bet” because of a shortage of new housing units, Hang Lung Properties Ltd. Chairman Ronnie Chan said.

Chan said in a Bloomberg Television interview today that he’s “positive” about the city’s luxury housing market because demand will be supported by wealthy mainland Chinese.

Chan spoke after the International Monetary Fund said yesterday that Hong Kong banks should tighten lending to prevent an investment-asset bubble. Record low interest rates have helped boost home prices by more than 30% this year, according to Centaline Property Agency Ltd.

Hang Lung, Hong Kong’s fourth-biggest developer by market value, may resume buying land in the city “if there is a repeat of 1999,” Chan said, without elaborating. The developer last bought land locally in 2000, he said.

“We always like to buy when there is nobody around,” Chan said. “Right now, too many in Hong Kong want to buy land.”

Hang Lung will buy more land in China, where investment returns are better, Chan said. The mainland’s commercial property market is “a better bet” than Hong Kong’s, he said. -- Bloomberg

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