China Seizes Hopson, Evergrande Undeveloped Guangzhou Plots, HKET Reports

Guangzhou Municipal Land Resources and Housing Administrative Bureau has seized three pieces of undeveloped land from property developers including Hopson Development Holdings Ltd. and Evergrande Real Estate Group Ltd., Hong Kong Economic Times reported, citing unidentified people.

The Guangzhou government canceled land purchase agreements and seized more than 550 million ($80 million) of deposits because the developers didn’t fulfill terms of the contracts, the report said, citing people close to the land bureau.

Hopson bought one of the sites in 2007 for 350 million yuan and Evergrande bought one in 2008 for 4.1 billion yuan, the report said.

China began requiring developers pay higher deposits for land purchases last month and banned banks from lending to developers found to be hoarding land as Premier Wen Jiabao pledged to crack down on real-estate speculation and keep housing affordable. Property prices in 70 Chinese cities gained a record 11.7 percent in March from a year earlier.

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