This is the weekly news wrap, featuring the latest real estate stories from Hong Kong. Whether your interest lies in industrial, retail, office real estate or asset investments, we have got the news that matters, covered.

Rate Hikes for Hong Kong Borrowers a `Matter of Time' After Fed
A dose of reality may be on the way for Hong Kong, even as it breezes through the US Federal Reserve’s latest rate hike. Because its currency is pegged to the dollar, Hong Kong effectively imports US monetary policy and adjusts borrowing costs in line with the Fed. The Hong Kong Monetary Authority raised its base rate to 2.25% from 2% Thursday, following a 25 basis point move by the Fed.

Swire in Talks to Sell Hong Kong Towers for $1.8 Billion
Swire Properties is in talks to sell its stakes in two Hong Kong towers to Hengli Investments Holding Group for more than HK$14 billion, according to people familiar with the matter, adding to a spate of deals in the world’s priciest office market. Hengli is reportedly in discussion with banks on getting financing for the purchase of the buildings, known as Cityplaza Three and Cityplaza Four.

Details on Vacancy Tax for Hong Kong Flat Hoarders Coming in June
South China Morning Post
The government is set to unveil details this month of a vacancy tax on property owners hoarding newly built flats that remain vacant as it seeks to find immediate as well as longer-term solutions to ease the city’s acute housing shortage. A government source said the tax would be collected through an existing channel which would save administrative costs, but it was yet to be decided whether it would be in the form of a rates charge.

Park House Sold for Record Price of $2,910 psf Per Plot Ratio
The Straits Times
Orchard property Park House has fetched a record collective sale price of S$2,910 per sq ft per plot ratio (psf ppr). The public tender for Park House was awarded on June 1 to Shun Tak Cuscaden Residential, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hong Kong-listed Shun Tak Holdings. This new benchmark price beats the previous peak of $2,526 psf ppr, which Hong Kong's Swire Properties paid for the Hampton Court collective sale site at Draycott Park in 2013 - a deal also brokered by CBRE.

Post Headquarters Makes Way for Office
The Standard
The Hongkong Post headquarters in Central should be demolished to make way for commercial development, and a new HK$1.6 billion postal complex should be built in Kowloon Bay, it has been suggested. The proposal was discussed in the Legislative Council's public works subcommittee yesterday. Deputy secretary of the Development Bureau Doris Ho pui-ling said the move would yield space in Central, so that more Grade A offices could be built to meet needs in accordance with the government's territorial development strategy "Hong Kong 2030+."

Hong Kong Ferry Wins URA Project with $1b Bid
The Standard
Hong Kong Ferry yesterday won the Urban Renewal Authority's contract for the Tung Chau Street/Kweilin Street Redevelopment Project in Sham Shui Po with a HK$1.03 billion offer. The project, situated at 270 to 286 Tung Chau Street intersecting Kweilin Street, has a site area of about 16,038 sq ft and the project will produce a total gross floor area of about 144,300 sq ft.

China Property Sales Pick Up as Developers Push Projects to Market
China’s real estate investment growth slowed in May but remained firm, with sales growth hitting a near one-year high, defying fresh purchase curbs and higher financing costs and indicating resilience in one of the country’s main economic drivers. Property investment rose 9.8% in May from the same period a year earlier, compared with a 10.2% rise in April, according to Reuters calculation based on National Bureau of Statistics data. It grew 10.2% in the first five months of the year.

CBRE in the News

Shuttered Shopfronts Show Impact of E-commerce on Hong Kong’s Retail Sector
South China Morning Post
Features Lawrence Wan, Senior Director, Advisory and Transaction Services – Retail, CBRE Hong Kong

Beijing Capital Land Quickens Pace to Redevelop Hotel Properties
Finet (Chinese only)
Features CBRE Research