Leland Sun

With the Hong Kong economy heavily skewed towards property investment, the suggestion to increase rates would provide a substantial source of recurrent revenue for the government, unlike stamp duty and land sales, which can fluctuate greatly.

In the past three years the government and related agencies have intervened in the property market no fewer than 25 times, introducing additional stamp duties - a Special Stamp Duty and a Buyers' Stamp Duty - and mandating banks to lower their maximum mortgage advance ratios and run increased interest rate stress-test scenarios. Most recently, it doubled ad valorem stamp duty rates.