Two residential projects at Tsing Yi and Tai Kok Tsui are set to face sales competition this month, and analysts say their prices are being closely watched as indicators of confidence. Developers of Villa Esplanada phase two at Tsing Yi and Island Harbourview phase one at Olympic Station are preparing launches. Internal sales are expected to start as early as next week. Villa Esplanada phase two has 832 units in three blocks, of which 166 can be reserved for internal sale. With 1,237 units in five blocks, Island Harbourview phase one can sell 247 units internally. Agents said the two projects would compete for buyers to a certain extent although average prices for Island Harbourview units were expected to be higher because of its better location on top of Olympic Station. Villa Esplanada is not far from Tsing Yi Station. Villa Esplanada and Island Harbourview units were predicted to sell at slightly more than $4,000 per square foot and $4,500 to $5,000 per sq ft respectively. But analysts said prices of units for internal sale could be lower to drum up buyer support. Ricacorp Properties managing director Barry Law said that, given improved market sentiment, developers would not enter into a new price war. But they would remain careful in fixing prices at the right levels to speed up sales. 'Developers are likely to price at near or slightly below market rates in the hope of creating an enthusiastic response to internal sales,' he said. Villa Esplanada is being jointly built by China Resources Enterprise, Sun Hung Kai Properties and Cheung Kong (Holdings). Island Harbourview is being developed by a Sino Land-led consortium and will comprise more than 5,000 units in several phases. Analysts said recent sales of remaining flats at Cheung Kong's Tierra Verde at Tsing Yi Station at $4,200 to $4,600 per sq ft and the re-launch of 160 defaulted units of Villa Esplanada at about $4,100 per sq ft provided references for pricing. Mr Law expected selling prices of Island Harbourview to be about $4,500 to $4,800 per sq ft. Midland Realty assistant sales manager for Tsing Yi Dennis Chow said developers of Villa Esplanada would not set too low a price amid talk of raising prices in other projects.