Over $1 billion stolen in China's low-cost housing programme
BEIJING (AFP) - China's affordable housing programme lost nearly US$1 billion to embezzlement last year, the national auditor reported on Friday, underscoring the obstacles to official efforts to fight graft.
About 5.8 billion yuan (S$1.1 billion) went towards "loan repayment, foreign investment, land requisition and house demolitions, office cash flow and other expenses not related to affordable-housing projects", the National Audit Office said on its website.
A total of 360 projects or organisations "embezzled" the funds, it said.
Housing costs - which have spiralled in recent years despite government controls - have become a sensitive issue as ordinary Chinese find themselves struggling to afford a home.