How Carrie Lam’s land supply initiative can bring Hong Kong closer to Beijing
The appointment of the Task Force on Land Supply was a step in the right direction by Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor. And, if she can continue to provide strong support to the task force so that its members can continue their work of identifying surplus land for housing in a fair and unbiased manner, this could very well establish Lam as one of the best chief executives in Hong Kong’s history.
While there will be opposition from vested interests and influential groups, including property developers and golf clubs, Chief Executive Lam should continue undeterred, since she can rely on Beijing’s support in this noble venture.
Watch: Why is land in Hong Kong so expensive?
For Beijing, this will be a great opportunity to win hearts in Hong Kong, since its support for something which is the No 1 priority for Hong Kong people would help to bring them closer to the mainland and further isolate any voices of dissent.
As the public consultation on land supply continues, Lam should ensure the people’s voice is heard by the government and excess land released from this exercise goes towards resolving the problem of high housing costs in Hong Kong.
There is nothing to feel proud of in Hong Kong’s being consistently ranked as the most expensive housing market in the world. Rather, it is matter of shame for the Hong Kong bureaucracy, given the very strong financial resources at its disposal.
The government is supposed to work for the common and hardworking people of Hong Kong – not for the property developers or landlords.
Arun Garg, Taikoo Shing