Tuesday, November 13, 2018
 
Columnist
Martin Hennecke

K Wah dismisses vacancy tax as 'ill placed'
 
12/07/2018
 
K Wah International (0173) said yesterday the government's proposed vacancy tax is a market distortion, adding that the vacant apartments in Hong Kong are mainly luxury flats.

General manager Tony Wan Wai-ming said the amendment that requires developers to offer for sale no less than 20 percent of the total number of residential units would not impact the company much.

Its latest residential project in Tai Po's Pak Shek Kok only has a vacancy rate of 2 percent, he said.

Despite the government's recent interventions in the property market, a luxury apartment in One LaSalle in Kowloon Tong changed hands at HK$70.8 million, or HK$32,000 per square foot.

The vendor acquired the property for HK$54.28 million in 2010.

However, a luxury house in Stanley sold at a HK$30 million loss. Meanwhile, a 3,382-sq-ft house in Regalia Bay only fetched HK$90 million, 25 percent less than the HK$112 million the vendor paid in 2011.

In the primary market, a house in Chinachem Group's Serenity Peak House in Sai Kung sold for HK$130 million, or HK$55,607 per sq ft. The 2,342-sq-ft home also includes a 2,851 sq-ft garden, 691-sq-ft platform, 437-sq-ft rooftop deck, and a 452-sq-ft parking space.

On Hong Kong Island, a luxury home in Sun Hung Kai Properties' (0016) Victoria Harbour project fetched more than HK$100 million yesterday. The 1,599-sq-ft apartment was sold by tender for HK$62,000 per sq ft, and was the third deal transacted at more than HK$100 million.

Meanwhile, SHKP said it received 1,000 subscriptions for 168 flats at its St Martin project in Tai Po's Pak Shek Kok, which will be on offer on Saturday.

Separately, Far East Consortium's (0035) The Garrison in Tai Wai received 1,300 subscriptions for its first 50 flats for pre-sale on Saturday. However, market rumors suggest that real estate agents have used various means to boost the subscription, including asking their family members and friends to submit applications for the flats.

In other news, the stamp duty collected in June amounted to HK$5.57 billion, up 60 percent from a month ago, a high for the year. The Inland Revenue Department said 340 deals were recorded involving buyer stamp duty, which is applicable to non-Hong Kong permanent residents, amounting to HK$1.72 billion -- an increase of more than 200 percent from May.

There were 60 deals involving special stamp duty, totaling HK$44.56 million, up 4 percent. Double stamp duty collected was HK$3.8 billion, up 50 percent month on month.

samantha.wong@singtaonewscorp.com

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