Beijing to see record high residential land sale

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The area of land sold for residential use in Beijing in the coming month will set a record high, amid government efforts to increase land supply, a financial newspaper reported Thursday.

The city will sell 23 land lots for residential use to property developers from Jan 4 to Feb 6, the Securities Times reported, citing data from Centaline Property Research Center.

The total construction area of the land will exceed 3 million square meters, larger than the same period in any previous year.

With non-residential land included, a total of 26 lots will be sold during the period, with a combined value estimated at over 70 billion yuan ($10.8 billion).

Authorities in Beijing and other major cities have increased land supply to cool runaway house prices fueled by huge demand and limited supply.

Last year, Beijing saw 91 residential lots enter the market, with a construction area totaling 12.3 million square meters, 9.8 million sq m more than the previous year.

Zhang Dawei, chief analyst at Centaline Property, predicted land supply in the city would remain high this year.

"The increased land supply will help boost housing supply and put a lid on house prices in 2018," Zhang said.

China's property market, once deemed a major risk for the broader economy, cooled in 2017 amid tough curbs such as purchase restrictions and increased downpayment requirements, as the government sought to rein in speculation.

A report from the National Academy of Economic Strategy predicts that the country's property market will remain stable in 2018 if there are no major policy shocks.

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