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Government statement on extension of secondary market of HOS to White Form buyers

     In response to a non-binding motion, passed in the Legislative Council Panel on Housing today (November 5),  asking the Government to shelve the scheme to allow buyers with White Form (WF) status to purchase Home Ownership Scheme (HOS) flats with premium not yet paid under the Secondary Market Scheme (SMS), the  Secretary for Transport and Housing, Professor Anthony Cheung Bing-leung said while he understood the Legislative Council Members' concern, it was an irresponsible act of the Government to shelve the scheme before it was implemented and reviewed, adding that it was only an interim scheme.    

     "The scheme is unveiled by the Chief Executive at a question and answer session of the Legislative Council in July. It is aimed at allowing those with WF status to purchase HOS flats with premium not yet paid on the HOS Secondary Market before the completion of the first batch of new HOS flats by 2016-17. It is an interim measure to address the home ownership needs of the eligible group. The Subsidised Housing Committee of the Housing Authority (HA) endorsed in September the implementation details after taking into account the different views in the society," said Professor Cheung.

     "We understand that the solution to the housing problem is to increase supply. The review of Long Term Housing Strategy has been launched to study the ways to increase housing supply, including the optimisation of the usage of existing public and private housing stock, in the short, medium and long term; the projection of housing demand for both public and private sectors to meet the needs of various groups in the community, including young people, the elderly, poorly-housed households, first-time home buyers and those looking for upgrading their living environment. In the short term, the Government has decided to switch the rent-to-buy scheme to direct sale of the 1 000 flats under the Hong Kong Housing Society's Tsing Luk Street development for the 'My Home Purchase Plan' and release the 830 surplus HOS flats of the HA for sale," Professor Cheung added.

     Currently there are 250 000 HOS flats, 120 000 flats under Tenants Purchase Scheme and 9 000 flats under Hong Kong Housing Society's Flat-for-Sale Scheme, making a total of 379 000 flats with premium not yet paid tradable under the SMS.  These flats could be sold to public rental housing tenants and the 5 000 eligible WF buyers under the above-mentioned interim scheme.

Ends/Monday, November 5, 2012
Issued at HKT 22:10


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