BEIJING, Jan. 24 (Xinhua)-- Restrictions on foreigners buying real estate property in Beijing were called off as Beijing introduced a slew of measures Friday to revitalize the sluggish property market.
The residency requirement and house type limits for foreign expatriates buying homes in Beijing has been called off throughout 2009, according to the 15 opinions co-released by nine departments-- including the municipal construction committee, development and reform commission and finance bureau of Beijing.
In 2007, the local government issued regulations stipulating only expatriates living in Beijing more than one year and those who could provide details proving they would be the primary inhabitants could buy one house.
"In simple words, foreign expatriates in Beijing could buy only one house then," said Li Wenjie, general manager of real estate agency Centaline China's North China Branch. "The house price skyrocketed at that time. The government wanted to curb foreign capital in driving up the property price."
Foreign purchases accounted for seven to eight percent in all the real estate transaction in Beijing before the regulation took effect. After that, the number dropped to 0.5 percent, he said.