Wednesday, September 3, 2014   




Exco member on flat sales defensive

Eddie Luk

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

An Executive Council member said whenever he sells his luxury properties, it will have political overtones because of his position in the government.

Franklin Lam Fan-keung made the comment when lawmakers voiced concern after he sold two Mid-Level properties for a profit of more than HK$10 million.

Lam said he offered the apartments for sale in June and July, and both were sold before the new stamp duty was announced.

The two units, on the 14th floor of Casa Bella, were bought in 2001 for HK$4.2 million and HK$4 million respectively.

One was sold for HK$9.95 million last month and the other for more than HK$9 million earlier this month.

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Lam stressed he had no prior information of the crackdown on the sale of housing, which was implemented last week and before he sold the properties.

"I was not in Hong Kong for the entire week [last week], I told the Exco secretariat I would not be in Hong Kong and they did not tell me about the meeting."

Lam added that while he realized what he said may be politically sensitive, he does not think there should be too many restrictions.

Lam said when he joined Exco in July, he informed the authorities that he planned to sell a portion of his portfolio comprising 27 properties.

Another Exco member, Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee, confirmed that she and other members did not know about the new measures when they were asked to attend an emergency meeting on Friday.

But some lawmakers were aghast that Lam was in the dark.

On Friday, the government imposed new stamp duty measures on properties bought by companies and non- residents.


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