Vietnam's largest city plans to help property firms clear stock

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Ho Chi Minh City's government plans to utilize the large stock of unsold apartments in order to provide housing for relocated residents, an industry official said.

The city is considering buying apartments between 40 and 70 square meters as it prepares for key public projects that will require many residents to be relocated for land clearance, the news website VnExpress cited Chairman of the HCMC Real Estate Association Le Hoang Chau as saying.

He said it usually takes a few years to develop a new housing project for relocated residents. "If the city proceeds with this plan, it will have a large supply of apartments for relocation purposes on hand while helping developers clear their stock."

Chau said city officials have not announced how many units they plan to buy, but have promised developers they will not have their profit margins reduced.

The city's real estate market took a big blow last year after the government tightened the issuing of credit, making it difficult for both developers and homebuyers to take out loans.

According to VnExpress, there are no official statistics on the number of unsold apartments in the city. Officials have projected that approximately 83,000 families need to be relocated between 2011 and 2015.

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