Interests of majority come a poor fourth

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 18 February, 1995, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 18 February, 1995, 12:00am

I REFER to the recent comments made by the Standard Chartered Bank, reported earlier this week, and Mr David Li's observations suggesting that the current mortgage lending restrictions should be relaxed, reported in the South China Morning Post, on February 16.

Obviously self interest is their number one priority. Mr Li is reported as saying that banks are responsible to shareholders - best described as speculators.

Why should speculators profit at the expense of the majority of the population? The majority, even at today's reasonable prices (reasonable according to the banks and developers), will never be able to afford their own homes in the private sector.

No doubt the banks and developers will suggest that free market forces should take effect. I agree with this sentiment if it is fully implemented - that is, it goes hand in hand with a land supply to satisfy public demand.

Unfortunately this will never happen as the Government has created and continues to manage an artificial land shortage.

The same government that should be looking after the interests of the majority of the population, but prefers to put its self interests first, the interests of the developers and the banks second, the interests of China third and the interests of the majority of the population a poor fourth.

By creating and perpetuating this land shortage the Government has permitted property prices to reach what must be nearly, if not the most expensive in the world. Although, as usual, it has reacted too late, it must continue with the current strict controls and increase land supply to meet demand.

Unfortunately I am sure that self interest will dictate future policy.

ALAN J. BISHOP Happy Valley