“Vancouver’s becoming a safety deposit box for the global rich!” – developer seeking billions in tax dollars for affordable housing pitches city’s “hot real estate” to buyers in China

By ThinkPol Staff with files from Lisa Tanh

“Vancouver is becoming a safe deposit for the global rich!”

Those are the words[1]Original: http://www.westbankcorp.cn/media/141.html Archive:http://archive.is/jdxTy used to promote Vancouver real estate in China by luxury real estate developer Westbank, whose owner Ian Gillespie is under fire for asking the federal government for billions in tax dollars to build 50,000 affordable housing units in Vancouver and Toronto[2]https://thinkpol.ca/2018/05/18/chinese-developer-raised-funds-trudeaus-liberals-seeking-40-billion-tax-dollars-build-affordable-housing/.

“In recent years, the boom in Vancouver’s properties has attracted the global rich,” the post on Westbank’s China site goes on to say. “It took only two years for Vancouver’s housing prices to double.”

According to Westbank, the Vancouver real estate market offers a number of advantages to investors:

Taxes and Fees Policy: Unlimited Purchases , Unlimited Loans , Unlimited Selling , Extra Stamp Duty, this triggers temporary volatility but does not affect the buyers’ enthusiasm on investing

Housing price gain: Vancouver’s house prices gain in recent years is top in the world, it went up 25.5% last year

Demand exceeds supply: The influx of large numbers of new immigrants and high-net-worth households in Vancouver has caused a supply shortage of real estate and this critical situation is difficult to change.

Canadian dollar exchange rate: Historical lows, favouring overseas buyers entering the market

Mortgage interest rate: The lowest in the world’s first-tier countries, between 2% and 3%, it currently is at the lowest level in Canada’s history.

The transfer of Uncompleted Residential Properties: Apartment Residences only requires 25% down payment, can be transferred before completion, low cost and high yield
Canada’s economic performance is eye-catching, leading in the global developed countries!

Vancouverites continued to react with anger and disbelief to the news that Ian Gillespie, who has been dubbed the “architect of the housing crisis”, is seeking taxpayer money to build affordable housing.

“Westbank is a major contributor to housing affordability issue,” housing advocate Raza Mirza with Housing Action for Local Taxpayers (HALT) said. “They have perpetrated the crisis by selling new supply, which would have gone to locals, to non-residents in sale galas outside of Canada.”

“Now they are trying to profit further off the affordability crisis, they are contributing to,” Mirza added. “This is another situation which shows Ottawa’s lack of basic understanding in dealing with issue British Columbian, especially taxpaying residents of Lower Mainland, are facing.”

On social media, some accused Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of trying to payback a “Liberal bagman,” and vowed to vote against the Liberals at the next election — if Westbank receives any public money.

Gillespie fundraised for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberals during the 2015 federal election campaign.

Adam Vaughan, the federal parliamentary secretary for housing and urban affairs, denied that Westbank’s proposal is a done deal.

“I wouldn’t call it a proposal because it’s not fully formed yet,” Vaughan said. “It’s not entirely clear to the government what they’re trying to achieve.”

Vaughan said it’s essentially saying “give us control of all your funding and trust us to deliver 50,000 units,” while a unit funded program would be giving funding on a unit-by-unit basis.

“We have affordable housing crisis right across the country from Halifax to Montreal to Calgary,” Vaughan said. “And to suggest that we’re going to spend the entire budget in two cities, well, it’s not going to happen.”

Westbank did not respond to ThinkPol’s request for comments in time despite repeated requests.

References   [ + ]

1. Original: http://www.westbankcorp.cn/media/141.html Archive:http://archive.is/jdxTy
2. https://thinkpol.ca/2018/05/18/chinese-developer-raised-funds-trudeaus-liberals-seeking-40-billion-tax-dollars-build-affordable-housing/