The first batch of flats in Villa Esplanada in Tsing Yi are being released at a discount. The 80 units will be offered at an average of $4,085 per square foot for cash, about 10 per cent below the $4,500 per square foot secondary market prices. The move came before yesterday's 25-basis-point cut in the prime lending rate. The project was jointly developed by Sun Hung Kai Properties (SHKP), Cheung Kong (Holdings) and China Resources Enterprise (CRE). Buyer registration is from January 4 to 6 with sales from January 9. SHKP sales manager Alfred So Chung-keung said: 'We will increase prices for the next batch of units if the response is good.' CRE executive director Lau Pak-shing said the development would make only a small profit. Mr So said the market had stabilised compared with six months ago.