BEIJING Jan 15 China's land price inflation for
residential homes is expected to quicken this year after picking
up in the fourth quarter, the Ministry of Land and Resources
said on Tuesday, amid growing expectations that the property
market is rebounding.
The average price of land for residential homes rose 1.2
percent to 4,620 yuan ($740) per square metre in 105 cities
between October and December compared to the third quarter, the
ministry said. Prices had risen 0.9 percent in the third
Rising land prices may fuel speculation that China's
property market, which has picked up after the central bank cut
interest rates last year to shore up the economy, is on a
Home affordability in China is near record lows and vexes
Beijing, which has tried to calm the property market for three
years over fears that steep prices would fuel social discontent.
"Improving economic data and the rebound in property
investment and sales have underpinned the mild recovery in land
prices in the fourth quarter," said Zhao Song from China Land
Surveying and Planning Institute, a research unit under the land
"We should be wary of looser liquidity conditions offseting
the effect of property controls in 2013," Zhao said.
On an annual basis, prices of residential land also rose 2.3
percent in the fourth quarter, up 1.2 percentage points from the
previous three months to end five consecutive quarters of
Land prices in Chinese cities along the Pearl River delta,
an export stronghold that houses Guangdong, rose the fastest in
China in the fourth quarter, the ministry said.
A private survey showed average home prices in China's 100
largest cities rose 0.2 percent in December from November in the
seventh straight month of increase, reinforcing signs of a
recovery in the property market.
($1 = 6.2192 Chinese yuan)
(Reporting By Xiaoyi Shao and Koh Gui Qing; Editing by Jeremy