Property crisis means Chinese cities sell land to themselves

Hui Ka Yan, chairman of China Evergrande Group, speaks during a news conference in Hong Kong on Tuesday, March 26, 2019. Foto: Bloomberg photo by Paul Yeung

On the surface, the recent land auction by the Chinese city of Rizhao appeared routine. There were four bids, pushing the price up 11% to $170 million. A closer look reveals something curious: The offers were reportedly made by a finance entity owned by the Rizhao government, meaning the city effectively sold land to itself.

Across China, local government financing vehicles have replaced cash-strapped property developers as the biggest buyers of land for real estate development, stoking fresh concerns over the ability of these off-balance sheet borrowers to repay a debt pile that tops $8.4 trillion by some estimates...

Læs også
Top job