Government and Policy

China mulls new ways to fund affordable homes

Updated: 2011-06-15 09:40
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BEIJING - China's housing ministry said on Tuesday that the country's top economic planning agency was mulling new financing mechanisms, with the issuance of corporate bonds an option, for local governments to build affordable houses.

In a statement on its website, the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development (MOHURD) said the funds for building affordable housing should be raised through multiple channels, and the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) was planning to allow local governments to raise funds through issuing corporate bonds.

The MOHURD also called upon local authorities to innovate new financing mechanisms to expand the channels for financing affordable house building.

The ministry urged local governments to step up efforts to make sure that construction of 10 million affordable housing units, planned for this year, would be all underway by the end of November.

"Four million affordable housing units must be finished this year," said the statement.

Official figures showed that, although affordable housing starts for the first five months this year are remarkably higher than the same period last year, some regions have lagged behind others.

Building 10 million affordable housing units, including the redevelopment of run-down areas and construction of public-rent housing, is an overriding task that the people are closely watching, Chinese Vice-Premier Li Keqiang said on Satuarday.

"Coordinated efforts must be stepped up to ensure planned projects start on time and projects under construction are completed on time," he said.

The housing ministry also called for strict quality supervision in terms of designing, raw materials and construction, and urged local governments to fairly distribute the government-subsidized housing.