Singapore's public housing board to continue having high deficit in next few years: minister   2015-01-20 18:49:50

SINGAPORE, Jan. 20 (Xinhua) -- The net deficit of Singapore's Housing and Development Board, which is charged with building and maintaining the public housing estates, will continue to run high deficit in the next few financial years, a government minister said on Tuesday.

This was due to the completion of public housing flats launched in the ramp-up phase in financial year 2013, National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan said in parliament.

The spike in the deficit of the Housing and Development Board was due to the ramp-up in flat building and upgrading programs. The deficit in future years will depend on factors, such as housing demand, the board's building and upgrading programs, and developments costs and policy changes, Khaw said.

The Housing and Development ran a deficit of 1.97 billion Singapore dollars (1.48 billion U.S. dollars) before government grant and taxation in the financial year 2013-14.

The Singapore government significantly increased the supply of public housing flats sold to local resident households in the years since 2011.

In a bid to curb rising property prices in the aftermath of the global financial crisis, authorities also put in place rounds of cooling measures.

The Singapore residential property market comprises the market for public housing flats built by the government and sold to resident households and the market for properties built by private developers. They are separate from each other. The public housing market providing housing for about 80 percent of the population is tightly regulated, with the basic principle of one unit for each eligible household.

Editor: Mioh Song
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