Everything about Landscope Christie's International Real Estate and the Hong Kong luxury property market

Brace for a long, cold winter

The Euro debt crisis continues without any sign of abating. After some stunning twists and turns, Greece has finally agreed to the salvage plan offered by the EU. But just when EU heads are breathing a sigh of relief, Italy with its worsening debt situation is poised to drag the EU into another round of chaos. Spain and Portugal fare no better; the Euro debt crisis seems to have no end in sight. This has dealt a blow to a weak US economy, which was showing signs of a mild and slow recovery.

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Market Woes

The Hong Kong stock market in the last four weeks has seen one of the most turbulent periods in its history. The Hang Seng Index has stunned the market with rollercoaster rides since early September, plummeting almost 20 per cent from over 20,000 to 16,250 before bouncing back marginally.

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The Quandary

The land auction yesterday returned worrying results. While the two lots of land in Yuen Long and Sai Kung were sold within prior price expectations, which had been generally adjusted downward by 10 per cent just before the auction, the larger lot at Junk Bay fetched a price below all predictions. If the theory that government land auctions reveal what the developers truly think about market prospects is anything to go by, the picture is once again confirmed to be on the dark side.

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More on unauthorised structures

The proliferation of unauthorised structures in Hong Kong has its root in a combination of physical, cultural, economical and legal causes, as explained in last month’s Market Watch. But the main cause stems from a lack of execution of Building Regulations and Building Orders and the fact that, despite the registration of a building order, nothing stops a sales transaction from proceeding should the seller and buyer so decide.

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Unauthorised structures

Unauthorised structures in Hong Kong have become an epidemic as a result of the government’s lack of law enforcement. The Building Regulations have explicit rules governing building works in Hong Kong, and there are almost no ambiguities after numerous amendments and updates over the past decades. The proliferation of unauthorised buildings works has its root in a combination of physical, cultural, economical and legal causes.

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