Shanghai steps up land sale to curb property prices

SHANGHAI: The Shanghai municipal government is putting up nearly 40 lots of land for sale in a week, the city's most extensive land sale ever, as it moves to curb housing prices by increasing available supply, the China Securities Journal said on Friday, May 14.

The land blocks, available for sale from May 18 to 25, are located in Pudong new district and Huqiao district among other areas where housing demands is particularly strong, the newspaper said, citing data provided by the city's property exchange.

Chinese authorities have stepped up their drive to curb property speculation and bring surging prices under control, fearing the formation of asset price bubbles and potential social unrest as housing becomes increasingly unaffordable in big cities.

Shanghai is also preparing tough new draft measures to rein in the property market that will include levying property taxes on owners of multiple residences, the official Shanghai Securities News reported earlier this week.

Other localities have also tightened loan availability. Beijing has ordered that families in the future be limited to purchases of only one home.

Property prices in China's big cities rose at the fastest pace on record in April, with an average gain of 12.8% from a year earlier across 70 cities, according to official data. -- Reuters
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