Hong Kong boosts land supply to cool property market
Leung will be hoping the populist policies will shore up his political future after several scandals, mass protests, and a failed impeachment in his first six months in office.
On Wednesday, hundreds of protesters surrounded the legislature as Leung spoke, some demanding he resign and take stronger measures to make housing prices affordable again.
The former British colony's soaring property prices, among the world's highest, have seen the spread of cage homes, wire mesh hutches stacked on top of each other and cubicle apartments as the city's residents are forced out of the market.
"Land shortage has seriously stifled our social and economic development and smothered many opportunities for people to start and expand their businesses," Leung said, noting that some 200,000 people were now on waiting lists for public housing.
"As long as the housing shortage persists, we have no alternative but to restrict external demand and curb speculative activities," he added in a two-hour speech that laid out his long-term blueprint for the remainder of his five-year term.
Leung said more land would be rezoned for housing and new areas opened up for development, with 67,000 private units expected to come on to the market in the next three to four years. A target of some 100,000 subsidised public housing units would be built in the five
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