[photopress:pudongpicture.jpg,full,alignright]Shanghai has been designated as a testing ground for a more centralized, and hopefully more effective, vertical land administration system. This will be a good testing place for in Shanghai property prices have fluctuated wildly.
This is one of a series of moves by central government agencies to further regulate the land and housing market. It follows public complaints of rising housing prices in major cities and allegations of shady deals in the real estate market.
The Ministry of Land and Resources last week pledged that it will rebuild its administrative system according to the central bank model, namely by setting up a certain number of regional bureaus (nine in the ministry’s case) reporting directly to its central office in Beijing.
At the same time, the Ministry of Construction, another key regulator of the land and real estate market, firmly reprimanded ten land developers and related firms for their attempts to defy industry rules. Starting January 2007 inspection teams will be dispatched nationwide to check the implementation of current policies.
In the case of the Ministry of Land and Resources, the other eight bureaus to be established will be in Beijing, Shenyang, Nanjing, Jinan, Guangzhou, Wuhan, Chengdu and Xi’an. They will form a nationwide regulatory network with Shanghai. But, according to a ministry official who did not wish to be named this will be ‘a gradual process’. He told China Daily that there was no need to set up all of them at one time.
Since mid-2006, one policy after another has been introduced to stabilize the land and housing market.
In July, there was a cross-the-board increase in the down payment rate for commercial housing.
In early November a regulation issued by the ministry, to be effective as of Jan. 1, 2007, doubled the acquisition price of arable land for urban development projects.
The shortage of land is most acute in Shanghai. The city’s per capita amount of land is one twentieth of the national average. According to the Shanghai municipal government, the city is exploring new ways to strengthen land control and management. It plans to introduce stricter land regulation and make better use of available land.
Source: China Daily