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Large cities see home prices rise

By  Hu Yuanyuan and Wang Qian  (China Daily)

08:24, December 19, 2012

An apartment building is under construction in Nanchong, Southwest China's Sichuan province on Dec 18, 2012. [Photo/Xinhua]

Property prices continued to rise moderately in November in major cities, but a strong rebound is not likely next year given the rigorous real-estate policies.

Of 70 major cities monitored, 18 saw property prices rise year-on-year, compared with 12 in October. But their average growth rate was capped at 4.7 percent, the National Bureau of Statistics said on Tuesday.

On a month-on-month basis, 35 major cities saw prices rise at an average rate of just below 0.9 percent.

Industry experts said government policies would curb sharp price rises.

Major cities are expected to see moderate price growth, while some second- and third-tier cities will experience a decline in 2013, experts said.

Property prices have fallen in third-tier cities, such as Wenzhou, Zhejiang province, and Ordos, the Inner Mongolia autonomous region. "There is still strong demand in Beijing, as seen by the recovery led by the market for older homes," said Nie Meisheng, honorable chairman of the Chamber of Real Estate Commerce at the All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce.

But a large rebound in prices is unlikely, she added.

"If there is any price hike that is much higher than GDP growth, the government will definitely launch more price control measures," Nie said.

But second- and third-tier cities would be a different story, she said, especially those already with a large amount of housing stock.

Gu Yunchang, deputy head of the China Real Estate and Housing Research Association, agreed and said the major cities will see prices increase.

Mao Daqing, vice-president of China Vanke Co, the country's largest property developer, said there would be price growth in some key cities but it will be limited.

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