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Hefty Tax Likely on Second Home
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A land ministry official has revealed Chinese authorities are considering a heavy property tax on those who purchase a second home or luxury housing, Chinese newspapers reported yesterday.

This was disclosed by Su Kexing, vice director general of the Land Use Department of the Ministry of Land and Resources, at a recent seminar in Beijing, amid calls by the general public to cool down speculation on the housing markets in some parts of the country.

Su said residents will enjoy zero property tax for basic housing, but the tax rate would be very high for a second home, villas and other up-market homes. He did not reveal a timetable for legislation on property tax.

Su said some developers are still building villas despite a ban by the State in 2003. He promised to launch an investigation and crack down on local government officials and developers who are involved in illegal developments of villas.

Earlier this month, Minister of Construction Wang Guangtao said China will increase the supply of medium and low-cost flats in 2006, in a bid to make housing more affordable.

(Shenzhen Daily January 17, 2006)

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