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Subsidies for housing proposed for residents in temporary units

Thu, 16th Mar 2017

The Urban Renewal Committee’s plenary meeting discussed topics relating to temporary housing, renovation of industrial buildings and the establishment of a government-owned company.

The committee proposed to establish subsidies for residents who are being relocated from old buildings into new ones.

Currently, the region is relying on the construction of temporary buildings to house displaced residents while it modernizes, according to Paul Tse, who also explained that this is difficult for Macao to put into practice.

“A second choice can be provided to the residents,” noted Tse, clarifying the conditions under which the committee deems it appropriate to grant a subsidy.

“This is on the basis of maximizing choices for residents and to give them an opportunity to decide how to solve their housing problem during urban renewal,” said Tse, explaining that residents can either choose to buy or rent a property. An additional option is proposed:

“To avoid double taxation, the committee additionally proposed to consider providing low-interest loans to residents who will be giving up their occupation of those properties but will maintain their right to them so that they can move back at a later time,” said Paul Tse. “A low-interest loan will help their financial situation.”

Earlier, the Urban Renewal Committee revealed that it is looking to establish a government-owned company, the structure, working direction, management, and supervision board of which was discussed by the committee.

“It provides more flexibility in terms of commercial discussions,” said Paul Tse, when addressing why the committee is determined to set up the company.

The committee also suggested reducing the government’s property interests in relation to the redevelopment of old buildings given that the government has previously maintained full property rights. The committee’s preliminary conclusion is that the government will maintain 90 percent of the property interest of buildings between 30 to 40 years, 85 percent of those that are more than 40 years, and 80 to 85 percent of those related to key interests or which have already been demolished.

With respect to the renewal of industrial buildings, the committee considered that those with fewer difficulties should be the initial focus.

The committee further suggested providing legal and safety instructions for building owners to follow.

The committee considered the renewing of industrial buildings to be a short-term goal within the city’s renewal purposes.

When talking to the media, the Secretary for Land, Public Works and Transportation, Raimundo do Rosário, was questioned about the demolition of the Lai Chi Vun village. Rosário maintained his stance in relation to the recent dispute over the Lai Chi Vun village shipyards, claiming that there is nothing he can comment or add because the Chief Executive has made the matter of the region very clear.
(Macau News / Macau Daily Times)