China plans low-priced houses for urban poor

March 5th, 2008 - 6:58 pm ICT by admin  

Beijing, March 5 (Xinhua) China plans to earmark 6.8 billion yuan ($951 million) in its 2008 budget to build low-priced houses for the urban poor, Prime Minister Wen Jiabao said here Wednesday at the inaugural session of the country’s parliament. The projected amount is 1.7 billion yuan ($238 million), or 33 percent, more than last year’s figure, Wen said in his report to the first session of the 11th National People’s Congress, which opened at the Great Hall of the People in central Beijing.

Local governments are required to increase funding in this area, he said.

The government will also build more affordable houses and tighten management to ease the housing problem of low-income urban residents, and improve the living conditions of rural migrant workers in cities, he said.

A set of land supply, credit and tax measures will be introduced to increase the availability of reasonably priced housing, curb demand for high-end housing and prevent overheating in realty sector, he said.

As China has a large population and less land is available, Wen said the country has to turn to small and medium-size condominiums that are environmentally friendly to conserve energy.

“We must ensure that the government and the market both play their due roles,” Wen said.

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