A Chinese mother bought a US$6.5 million apartment in Manhattan for her two-year-old daughter to live in while studying at Columbia University state-owned CCTV reported on Monday . The woman completed the transaction at the beginning of last year, according to Kevin Brown, a real estate agent in New York who closed the deal for her. He said the woman told him her daughter would be going to Columbia University, New York University or maybe Harvard in the future. “So I said how old is your daughter, and she said she was two. I was just shocked,” Brown said in an interview with CCTV. Brown said the apartment cost about US$6.5 million (HK$50.5 million) and was in a 90-floor building that was still under construction close to Fifth Avenue. The US has seen increasing numbers of Chinese investing in the real estate market in recent years. In Manhattan, home to some of America’s most expensive houses, Chinese buyers have become important customers for New York real estate agencies, according to CCTV. According to the National Association of Realtors, the largest trade association in the US, Chinese buyers spent US$9 billion on house purchases in 2012, second only to Canadians, and they accounted for 11 per cent of all international transaction value. Brown also said that Chinese buyers currently accounted for about a quarter of his earnings, up from 15 per cent two years ago. Real estate specialists expect Chinese buyers to focus their attention on central and western parts of America in the future, CCTV reported.