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Beijing land values surpass US annual GDP

Beijing land values surpass US annual GDP

Staff Reporter

2013-08-28

Transaction prices in China’s urban housing market have touched new highs in 2013, such as Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Hangzhou. In Sunhe, located in the Zhaoyang district in Beijing, Cofco Property, spent 2.36 billion yuan (US$385 million) on July 23 this year to buy an HIJ plot, measuring 33,000 square meters. The floor area was priced at 44,000 yuan (US$7000) per square meter, making it the most expensive plot of land in the capital. On Aug 16, China Resources won the bid for a plot of land in Qianhai, Shenzhen for 10.9 billion yuan (US$1.7 billion), which broke the record for the highest price quoted for a single land transaction.The China Economic Weekly reported in 2011 that if Beijing sold all its land, it could generate a total amount that was higher than the US’ annual GDP. At present, this sales figure has already far exceeded the United States’ GDP for 2012.

Over recent years however, although real-estate prices in Beijing were the highest, its land values were constantly surpassed by cities, such as Shanghai and Wenzhou in Zhejiang. Therefore, the selling price of the plot of land in Sunhe had reinforced Beijing’s confidence in its land values.

The prime property in Sunhe has also attracted several leading real-estate developers, who competed for the land.

However, selling prices in the real-estate market are constantly breaking earlier records.

In Shanghai a plot of land in Pudong was sold to Taiwan-based Maxbase Holdings Limited for 1.21 billion yuan (US$197 million) after over 200 rounds of bids on May 9. This was labeled as the highest transaction price in Shanghai since 2011.

The floor area was priced at 39,932 yuan (US$6,500) per square meter. The premium rate was 47.5%.

But the record was soon broken by another plot of land in Pudong, which was sold for 40,079 yuan per square meter.

On May 29, a Beijing-based developer spent 4.6 billion yuan (US$751.5 million) for buying land on Xinhua Street in the Changning district of Shanghai, which was the highest land transaction price reported in the city so far this year.

These records have been surpassed yet again by other deals struck in June and July.

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Kee Koon Boon (“KB”) is the co-founder and director of HERO Investment Management which provides specialized fund management and investment advisory services to the ARCHEA Asia HERO Innovators Fund (www.heroinnovator.com), the only Asian SMID-cap tech-focused fund in the industry. KB is an internationally featured investor rooted in the principles of value investing for over a decade as a fund manager and analyst in the Asian capital markets who started his career at a boutique hedge fund in Singapore where he was with the firm since 2002 and was also part of the core investment committee in significantly outperforming the index in the 10-year-plus-old flagship Asian fund. He was also the portfolio manager for Asia-Pacific equities at Korea’s largest mutual fund company. Prior to setting up the H.E.R.O. Innovators Fund, KB was the Chief Investment Officer & CEO of a Singapore Registered Fund Management Company (RFMC) where he is responsible for listed Asian equity investments. KB had taught accounting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) as a faculty member and also pioneered the 15-week course on Accounting Fraud in Asia as an official module at SMU. KB remains grateful and honored to be invited by Singapore’s financial regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to present to their top management team about implementing a world’s first fact-based forward-looking fraud detection framework to bring about benefits for the capital markets in Singapore and for the public and investment community. KB also served the community in sharing his insights in writing articles about value investing and corporate governance in the media that include Business Times, Straits Times, Jakarta Post, Manual of Ideas, Investopedia, TedXWallStreet. He had also presented in top investment, banking and finance conferences in America, Italy, Sydney, Cape Town, HK, China. He has trained CEOs, entrepreneurs, CFOs, management executives in business strategy & business model innovation in Singapore, HK and China.

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