Property and gambling tycoon Stanley Ho Hung-sun has admitted lying over the past seven years by saying the property market would recover soon. He had given an upbeat appraisal despite being aware of the negative impact of Tung Chee-hwa's abandoned plan to build 85,000 flats a year. Mr Ho, president of the Real Estate Developers' Association, called on chief executive-designate Donald Tsang Yam-kuen to restore the high-land-price policy implemented by the colonial administration. 'I think a high-land-price policy is absolutely correct because it benefits Hong Kong's economy,' Mr Ho said. 'Hong Kong has no natural resources except its land. The colonial government considered land in Hong Kong as gold and treasure.' Mr Ho said he had repeatedly told former chief executive Mr Tung that his construction plan, unveiled in 1997, would not work. 'I have been forced to tell bare-faced lies in the past seven years that the property market would rebound soon so that the public could set its mind at ease,' the tycoon said. 'Quite to the contrary, I believed Mr Tung's policy would certainly have a disastrous effect on Hong Kong's economy.' But he said the government's nine-point package to stabilise the property market, announced in November 2002, had been a step in the right direction. Mr Ho expects the government to unveil new measures to boost the property market soon. He said his association had told the government that the price it set for auctioning the land in the application list was too high. A Housing, Planning and Lands Bureau spokesman said they were reviewing the mechanism of the application list for land sales.