In a long-anticipated move, China’s government announced that it would introduce a property tax in Chongqing and Shanghai, the Financial Times reported. The central government has allowed the two municipalities to set their own rates and roll out the tax gradually. Chongqing has already said that it will charge a tax of 0.5% on properties valued at between two and three times the market average, and 1% on properties valued above that amount. Shanghai authorities will charge 0.6% on second home purchases. "It is impossible for housing prices to fall overnight because of the property tax, but it will help to curb speculation in the housing market," said Huang Qifan, the mayor of Chongqing. The new tax comes on the back of a series of new measures announced on Wednesday intended to cool the country’s spiraling urban property prices.
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