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Singapore Budget 2014: Too early to relax property cooling measures, says DPM Tharman

Published on Feb 21, 2014 3:54 PM
 
The Government will continue to monitor the real estate market and adjust its measures when necessary, Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam said in his Budget speech. -- PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI FOR THE STRAITS TIMES

It is still too early for the Singapore Government to relax its property cooling measures, given the increase in home prices in the last four years, said Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam.

The Government will continue to monitor the real estate market and adjust its measures when necessary, he added.

He said that the Government has been concerned about property prices, which have risen strongly in recent years.

The successive rounds of market-cooling measures are working, with both the HDB resale and private residential prices stabilising, Mr Tharman added.

"We are not engineering a hard landing," he said in the annual Budget speech in Parliament on Friday.

"But neither are we able to eliminate cycles in the property market, with upswings in prices in some years followed by corrections."

Addressing complaints by business about rising costs including property rents, Mr Tharman noted that companies have faced rising rental expenses in the last few years, especially in industrial space.

But he said that a very large quantity of industrial and shop space is entering the market, and should have a moderating influence on property prices and rents over the next few years.

For more news and analysis on Singapore Budget 2014, click here for ST's Big Story coverage.