Debate on the merits of a property tax, which would be levied annually on the value of a property, has intensified in recent months. Advocates say it would dampen speculative buying and hoarding of property, thus dampening house price inflation, and would give local authorities a more regular source of revenue.
Leng Hongzhi, director of of land utilisation at the Ministry of Land and Resources said, "As far as I know, related government agencies are speeding up the process of introducing a property tax."
Property prices across China rose 10.7% in February from a year earlier. Beijing has stiffened mortgage rules in recent months to head off real estate inflation.
Neverthless house prices in some big cities have soared beyond the reach of many ordinary Chinese, fanning criticism online and heightening worries within the ruling Communist Party about the potentially destabilising impact of income inequalities.
Alibaba.com reported Zhang Qin, a deputy director of the Ministry of Housing and Urban-rural Development, said property prices in China would go up further, bolstered by robust and inelastic demand.