PRESS DIGEST - Hong Kong - July 18

HONG KONG, July 18 Wed Jul 17, 2013 10:26pm EDT

HONG KONG, July 18 (Reuters) - These are some of the leading stories in Hong Kong newspapers on Thursday. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST

-- Beverage tycoon Zong Qinghou, the richest man in China and the chairman of Hangzhou Wahaha Group, said he plans to open at least 100 shopping centres across the mainland over the next three to five years. He is also confident that the revenue generated from the retailing sector will exceed that of bottled-water business by 2015. (link.reuters.com/jyb79t)

-- Home prices in the city could fall as much as 45 percent over the next three to five years amid higher property taxes, rising interest rates and a bleak outlook for commercial property, according to the forecast by real estate agent Hong Kong Property. (link.reuters.com/kyb79t)

HONG KONG ECONOMIC JOURNAL

-- China Resources Land Ltd chairman Wu Xiangdong said contracted sales totalled 36.2 billion yuan ($5.90 billion)so far this year, and has completed 61 percent of this year's sales target. He expects average sales for the second half to be 4 billion to 4.5 billion yuan a month.

HONG KONG ECONOMIC TIMES

-- China Resources Holdings Co, the parent of China Resources Power Holdings Co Ltd, said it considers recent media reports alleging corruption in the company to be defamatory and that it had adversely affected the reputation of its leadership. The company also said it reserves all rights to pursue legal recourse.

THE STANDARD

-- Gaming revenue in Macau is expected to slow down in the second half as the arrival of high rollers tapers off, the Monetary Authority of Macao warned. (link.reuters.com/myb79t)

SING TAO DAILY

-- China Vanke Co Ltd has acquired two pieces of residential plots in Changsha, Hunan province, at an auction for a total of 960 million yuan.

-- At least two mainland online gaming companies, Snail Digital Technology Co Ltd and Shenzhen Dong Fang Bo Ya Technology Co Ltd, plan to list on the Hong Kong exchange, raising a total of about HK$2 billion ($257.81 million), according to market sources.

APPLE DAILY

-- Beijing Enterprises Water Group Ltd said it plans to buy two project units from Standard Water Ltd for 1.35 billion yuan to acquire 36 water projects in the mainland.

For Chinese newspapers, see............... ($1 = 6.1353 Chinese yuan) ($1 = 7.7578 Hong Kong dollars) (Reporting by Twinnie Siu; Editing by Supriya Kurane)