Caixin
Oct 07, 2021 04:01 AM
CHINA

Hong Kong Plans Massive Development to Build Homes and Promote IT Sector

What’s new: Hong Kong proposed to develop an area in the north of the city bordering with Shenzhen, designed to ease the world’s most expensive housing market and promote the integration with Shenzhen.

The new “Northern Metropolis” plan calls for the development of a 300 square-kilometer area that will eventually provide 926,000 residential units homes for as many as 2.5 million residents, or a third of the city’s current population, Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam said Wednesday in the last annual policy address of her current term.

The new area will focus on the development of innovative technology and build an international technology center, providing 650,000 jobs, including 150,000 in the IT sector. It will be the most important area in Hong Kong to connect with the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, Lam said. She did not say when the complex would be built.

The background: Hong Kong is one of the most expensive residential property markets in the world. Only 51% of its residents own their apartments, lower than many developed economies. Many blame high property prices as a root cause of social discontent that fueled popular protests against China’s mainland government in 2019.

The land supply shortage has long been a major cause of Hong Kong’s high housing prices. Hong Kong has a land shortage of about 3,000 hectares between 2019 and 2048, according to Lam’s report.

But through new development areas and reclamation projects, Lam said she’s confident that the land shortage will be resolved in the medium to long term.

Quick Takes are condensed versions of China-related stories for fast news you can use. To read the full story in Chinese, click here.

Contact reporter Denise Jia (huijuanjia@caixin.com)

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