New land 'will meet demand'

PUBLISHED : Friday, 04 April, 1997, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 04 April, 1997, 12:00am

Land to be released this year will meet the surging demand, China's Land Commission representative Chen Rongchun said yesterday.

Responding to criticism about the shortage of land, he said supply was not the cause of the housing problem.

Mr Chen blamed administrative problems, such as the long time needed for planning and approval of land.

'Land supply and housing supply are two different things. There are a lot of factors pushing property prices up.

'It has nothing to do with our land disposal plan. But it depends how the land will be used, how soon the land can be approved and what infrastructure will be provided by the Government,' he said.

Mr Chen said the land to be disposed and to be re-developed this year would be enough to produce at least 50,000 flats.

Tycoon Li Ka-shing, also speaking yesterday, said government measures to dampen speculation were not the best way to tackle the problem.

'Prices would not drop so easily because the real cause is insufficient land supply.

'We need more available land for sale, that is the best way,' Mr Li said.

But he declined to support the powerful Real Estate Developers' Association, which has threatened to sue the Government.