Chinese investment in Kiwi Property market to slow – in the face of tighter Chinese capital controls

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Chinese investment in the New Zealand real estate market is likely to slow over the next couple of years according to a leading Chinese trade and investment expert.

As the Reserve bank warns of rising mortgage rates could see Auckland home buyers spend 70 per cent of income on housing costs.

Source: 1 NEWS

Chinese investors have shown a strong appetite for housing investments around the globe in recent years, including in cities like Sydney and Auckland.

However Professor Chen Bo from Huazhong University of Science and Technology, who has advised the Chinese Government on trade and investment reforms, told 1NEWS Political Editor Corin Dann in Shanghai, that "what we are seeing now is the Chinese Government is not trying to facilitate investment abroad anymore like it was".

Over the last year or so the Chinese Government has become concerned about outflows of capital and has looked to prop up the value of the Chinese currency the renminbi, in the face of uncertainties about China's debt and economic outlook.

Mr Chen believes over the last few years some Chinese investors have looked to real estate abroad, not because they look for profit opportunities in those countries, but because they are afraid that investment opportunities in China have gotten gloomy.

But he says investment in property abroad is not considered to be healthy.

He goes on to say "if you are talking about real estate investment in New Zealand from China, I think so, there will be kind of a tightening in policies and you will probably see less and less kind of investment within the next one to two years".

Mr Chen gives the example of an individual wanting to study in New Zealand or send remittance to relatives in New Zealand.

He says where previously they could wire 50 thousand dollars US without application.

Now he says "for any amount over 10 thousand dollars US you need to fill out a bunch of documents saying exactly what you are trying to do, which makes you feel very cumbersome".

He says this is one of the signals from the government that it wants to tighten capital out flows "no matter whether it is a firm or individual".

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