Banks urged to lend more for affordable housing projects

Updated: 2011-01-13 10:38


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BEIJING - China's banking regulator on Wednesday urged banks to increase lending to affordable housing projects in 2010 in hopes of curbing runaway property prices.

The outstanding loans for affordable housing development by China's financial institutions increased 32 percent year-on-year to 75.1 billion yuan ($11.36 billion) by the end of November, 8 percentage points higher than the growth for the total real estate credit, according to figures released by the China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC).

During the same period, outstanding loans for individual purchases of affordable housing jumped 42 percent year-on-year to 19.8 billion yuan, 10 percentage points higher than the increase in total individual mortgages.

Loans for low-rent housing and renovation of shantytowns also increased.

Despite the faster rise, credits for affordable housing still took up a small share of the total.

China pledged to build 1,000 units of affordable housing in 2011 as part of its regulation of the nation's sizzling property market.

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To increase the supply of affordable housing marks a key part of this year's regulation after an array of policies, including tighter credit for commercial housing, failed to produce satisfactory results in 2010.

Last year, although some 5.9 million units of affordable housing were built which overshot the annual target of 5.8 million units, they were far short of needs.

Further, local governments are not proactive enough to push forward the construction, as they have to offer massive funding despite their tight overall budgets.

An unnamed CBRC official told a working conference on Wednesday that the commission would work out solutions of repayment problems for those projects after careful study.


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