Property market players are calling on the government to lift some of the restrictions it has imposed on home purchases, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reports.
Shih Wing-ching, founder and chairman of Centaline Property Agency Ltd., said the government should not worry that ending some of the property curbs would encourage the return of speculators to the market, noting that there is no doubt home prices are on a downward trend.
The Centaline City Leading Index, a gauge of home prices in the secondary market, has declined 10.8 percent from the peak in September last year.
Shih expects a 15 percent slump from the peak by the second quarter of this year.
Henry Cheng Kar-shun, chairman of New World Development Co. Ltd. (00017.HK), said the government should withdraw the curbs if home prices fall another 10 percent this year.
However, he believes prices are unlikely to plunge given the strong fundamental demand and high construction costs.
A spokesman with the Transport and Housing Bureau said the government has no plans at this stage to withdraw any of the measures designed to thwart speculative activities in the market.
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