Property: a way to spend the dirty money in China

“Crooked cadres in China prone to hide their dirty money in property”
“Luxury flats are a relatively easy and inconspicuous place to conceal dirty money”
By Jane Cai in Beijing, SCMP, 7 February, 2013
The cancer of corruption is showing its impact on society but people are finding out (finally). The corrupt distort the real estate market, buying properties in bulk, driving prices up, leaving apartments (and even office space) vacant in large quantities. Then we are told there is “high occupancy rate” (of the ones on the market for rent!). Rental prices have gone up in Beijing as a result, making life very difficult for migrant workers who do not have the possibility to buy something (restrictions and too expensive). Service people are harder to get here as they cannot cope anymore with the rising costs. Restaurants, shops and offices are closing down, or move to other locations as rents are too high. I know several restaurants who were successful but had to give up; some had their rent increased by 300%. It is simply unsustainable. The corrupt not only rob the people, they also poison society. How can one still respect the officials if this is not cleaned up?
Yesterday we were driving way out of the city, to the north. I was looking at the rows and rows of huge apartment complexes. Just wondering: they might be all sold, but how many are actually inhabited?
I am told office space is tight. Then why do I see all those vacant spaces in the different SOHO complexes? The explanation: owners do not bother to rent them out. Or their conditions are unrealistic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *