The government has made attempts to lower prices with property cooling measures, but they have so far proved to be ineffectual. 77 per cent of Hongkongers still can’t afford a flat.
“There is a demand-supply issue,” said Secretary for Transport and Housing Anthony Cheung Bing-leung in the understatement of the year. The most recent round of public housing sales saw 135,000 people apply for a measly 2,160 flats.
Many of us believe that prices are high simply because the city is densely populated. However, the perceived land scarcity issue in
“We need time, and land, to build homes,” said Cheung, reprising his role as Captain Obvious. “But when you go to every district, people object to [the construction of] public housing.”
He’s not wrong. We’ve seen how violently villagers have reacted to the government’s north-eastern
There’s a solution to our woes, a solution which will no doubt be met with intense opposition. We can bulldoze the golf courses, part of the country parks, the more sparsely populated villages, and then build public housing estates on top of them. Everyone will now be able to have a decently-sized home and housing prices will surely collapse. Problem solved.
Though effective, this plan is, in reality, unachievable. Our current government is filled with weak and incompetent bureaucrats who naturally feel the need to appease everyone. They don’t want to deal with crazed bamboo-wielding villagers, they don’t want to deal with the crying environmentalists, and they certainly do not want to deal with the wealthy, perhaps powerful, golfers.
More often than not, the said bureaucrats are also property owners. It’s easy to see why they are reluctant to impose effective property cooling measures.
Ruthless pragmatism is the way forward for