Wheelock Properties , pinning its hopes on the newly passed national security law to bring stability to Hong Kong and boost the housing market, has priced its upcoming residential project at a huge premium. The developer is expected to launch the first batch of 83 flats at Koko Hills in Kowloon East as early as next week, with prices starting at HK$19,264 (US$2,485) per square foot. It is likely to be the first project to go on sale after the new law was introduced on Tuesday. “We’re seeing an enthusiastic response to Koko Hills, with more than 4,000 inquires in the last couple of days already,” said Ricky Wong Kwong-yiu, managing director of Wheelock Properties. “The impact of the pandemic has eased, and we expect the housing market to be boosted in the second half.” He added that “the national security law can stabilise society and create a better business environment”. Units at Koko Hills are priced nearly 30 per cent higher than the average price of lived-in homes at the nearby Sceneway Garden, according to data from Centaline Property Agency. A 366 sq ft, the smallest unit on offer at the upcoming project, is priced at HK$7.9 million. “It will be hard to see those big discounted prices offered in the past couple months,” said Derek Chan, research head at Ricacorp Properties. “Developers have been inspired by the recent strong sales and are optimistic about the housing market in the second half.” New home sales in Hong Kong have taken off recently. Last week, CK Asset Holdings sold all 462 units at its Sea To Sky project in Lohas Park . Even with a catalogue price 20 per cent higher than comparable projects in the neighbourhood, there were as many as 28 bidders vying for each unit. Ricacorp expects Hong Kong’s home price to increase by 10 per cent this year, barring unforeseen “black swan” events like a resurgence of the coronavirus outbreak in the city. If property appreciates as predicted, prices will reach a record high by the end of 2020. Already there are signs that the property market has turned a corner . An index that measures prices in the secondary market rose 1.9 per cent in May, reversing the 0.1 per cent decline in April, according to data released by the Rating and Valuation Department. It marked the biggest monthly jump in 13 months and brought the average price of a second-hand home to a six-month high, a mere 3 per cent shy of the May 2019 peak.