New property registration system launched

2015-03-02 01:21:55 GMT2015-03-02 09:21:55(Beijing Time)  Global Times
Minister of Land and Resources Jiang Daming (L) and vice governor of Jiangsu province Xu Ming (R) unveiled the nameplate of the new Property Registration Bureau of Xuzhou city, Jiangsu province.Minister of Land and Resources Jiang Daming (L) and vice governor of Jiangsu province Xu Ming (R) unveiled the nameplate of the new Property Registration Bureau of Xuzhou city, Jiangsu province.

Regulating real estate market indirectly linked to anti-corruption drive

Observers said that the official launch of China's property registration system on Sunday would allow the government to better regulate the real estate market and provide convenience for property owners in registration procedures.

While the new system is not linked to the sweeping anti-graft campaign, experts believe it would have an indirect effect.

The Ministry of Land and Resources has set up a nationwide property registration system to provide a unified platform.

This means individual or corporate owners will no longer have to register their properties with various departments such as the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development, the Ministry of Agriculture and the State Forestry Administration.

The platform calls for information of every registered property to be shared in real-time among different regions, departments, and industries at various levels. Private information will be protected and not be made public.

A new real estate certificate will be issued for every housing transaction. Property owners can also renew their certificate starting from Sunday, and they will still be allowed to use the old certificates.

The first copies of the new real estate certificate have been issued to two people in Xuzhou, Jiangsu Province and Luzhou, Sichuan Province on Sunday, signaling the official implementation of the new rule.

Twenty-six provinces have set up registration departments, including Guangdong, Hebei, Sichuan and Hainan.

Wang Guanghua, the director of the real estate registration department of the Ministry of Land and Resources, said the new system will protect the Chinese citizens' basic right to property ownership.

For example, the centralized database will avoid the mistakes of one property being sold to more than one person or entity, Wang said.

The central government has yet to release further implementation details of the new regulation. Experts believe the details are not likely to be introduced in March.

The couple Xing Weifeng (R), Zhao Yuanyuan (L) got China's first property registration certificate from Minister Jiang Daming(C).The couple Xing Weifeng (R), Zhao Yuanyuan (L) got China's first property registration certificate from Minister Jiang Daming(C).

"The centralized information database will help [the government] better regulate the market, as it will provide statistical support when the government rolls out policies related to the real estate market, including those involving property taxes," Dong Liming, a former professor of the College of Urban and Environmental Sciences at Peking University, told the Global Times.

Chinese authorities passed the Property Law in 2007, establishing a unified property registration system.

In 2014, the government conducted a public consultation on the bill, before it was officially launched.

Although the new system is not specifically designed to curb corrupt officials or speculators, it would discourage clandestine ownership of more than one property, Dong said.

A lack of transparency in real estate ownership has allowed corrupt officials and speculators to acquire multiple properties, leading to a rise in property prices and assets transferred overseas.

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