Saturday, August 23, 2014   

Stamp Duty debate continues
(07-14 18:37)

A debate is continuing in the Legislative Council over proposed amendments to a government bill to double the stamp duty on property transactions.
Councilors had passed the second reading of the bill Monday morning.
The government hopes the bill will be passed before Legco's summer recess to help cool the property market.
Lawmakers earlier voted down an amendment put forward by councilor Abraham Shek Lai-him, to exempt companies from paying double stamp duty when they purchase commercial properties.
Meanwhile, the Monetary Authority's Chief Norman Chan Tak-lam says existing property tightening measures could be relaxed once an about-turn in the housing market takes hold.
But Chan said there's no way he can foresee the start of falling prices, nor its speed or magnitude, or whether any fall was only a brief respite or indeed a market turn.
Writing in his weekly blog, Chan said he understood that the tightening measures had been considered as "spoiling the party by taking away the punch bowl".
But he said they were necessary contain market bubbles. --RTHK   
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MTR apologizes over death of stray dog (08-22 16:43)
Li Fei warns against voting down reform (08-22 13:18)
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Protest at MTR over dog's death (08-22 12:09)
'Long Hair' denied entry to China (08-21 17:33)
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Governments sincere on reform (08-21 14:40)

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