The city of Chongqing is in the final stages of plans to introduce a tax on residential real estate, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing state media. The tax, which is intended to control sharp increases in property prices that have affected major cities across China, could become effective as early as March. News of the tax comes as Land and Resources Minister Xu Shaoshi said that the value of land sales in China increased 70% year-on-year in 2010 to US$470 billion. Shanghai is also said to be considering a property tax, but no official announcement has yet been made. While the Chongqing tax would reportedly target high-end properties, no specific information has been released regarding the tax rate or how it will be assessed.