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CPPCC members urge homes for all

03-04-2011 08:50 BJT

One issue highlighted by political advisors this year is ways to make housing more affordable. Their proposals last year prompted housing regulators to issue a host of measures in the past 12 months. But many members believe the government can and should do much more.

Ma Jianguo is a member of Zhi Gong Dang, one of the eight non-Communist parties in China. He believes his proposals to the nation's decision-makers can make a difference.

Last year, on behalf of his party, Ma Jianguo urged the government to step up the process of building affordable housing. He also advised the government to put a cap on the percentage of land used to building luxury homes.

His suggestions did not go unheeded.

The State Council issued eight new measures to overhaul the real estate market, including building 36 million affordable homes over the next five years and stipulating that no less than 70 percent of land must be used to build houses for middle and low-income residents.

But Ma Jianguo and his party didn't stop there. This year, they are pressing land and urban planning officials to do even more.

Ma Jianguo said, "There should be a background-check on those who buy affordable houses. For example, some people fake a marriage just to get a cheaper house. Others own a BMW and still want to purchase affordable houses."

Ma Jianguo also points out that when a tenant gains ownership of a house after five years, the government must have regulations in place to stop affordable houses from being sold and re-sold at a profit.

CCTV reporter Wang Guan said, “While some members propose where and how to build more affordable houses and make sure these houses go to those in need, other delegates believe the problems of sky-rocketing prices should be examined at their roots."

Zhang Guojun is an economist at Price Waterhouse Coopers. He became center of attention for his vocal criticism of local officials in charge of selling land. His proposal this year argues that while local governments try to resolve the issue of soaring housing prices, they in effect, are also part of the problem.

Zhang said, "The price at which the government sells land to developers and the tax levied on land development account for some 70 percent of the total cost of houses. Local governments rely too much on selling land as a means of generating fiscal revenue. This must change."

Zhang Guojun will present his proposals during group discussions of the CPPCC, and he says he will try as hard as he can to lobby the government so his ideas are translated into binding measures.

Editor:Zhang Jingya |Source: CNTV.CN

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