The Hong Kong government unveiled on Tuesday a much anticipated long-term housing plan, which revealed a supply target of 480,000 apartments over the next ten years, 10,000 more than the original target.
The ratio of public supply to private units will remain at six to four. There will be a total of 290,000 public home units, including 200,000 public rental units and 90,000 subsidized units under the Home Ownership Scheme, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported.
The targets will be adjusted each year according to changes in the economy and the society, said Anthony Cheung Bing-leung, Secretary for Transport and Housing.
Most of the land for the public supply has been earmarked. Sources were quoted as saying that the government is likely to loosen the limitation on the plot ratio of older urban areas.
“The government has found land for the construction of 254,000 public units. Some of the plots require changes of land use and planning,” Cheung said.
Democratic Party lawmaker Wu Chi-wai criticized the government for setting a target which he believes may not be realized. He noted that sites for 40,000 units have not yet been confirmed while 254,000 units have to be created through clumsy land-use transformation procedures.
The government must put in more efforts to seek sites to meet the housing supply target, said Leung Che-Cheung, a lawmaker from the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong.
The new supply goal is in line with market demand, said Victor Lui Ting, deputy managing director of Sun Hung Kai Properties Ltd. (00016.HK).
The government may ask property developers to take part in the building of public housing estates near the sites allotted for private development, and transfer the completed units to the housing authority, said Vincent Cheung Kiu-cho, director of appraisal for the Greater China region at Cushman & Wakefield.
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