• Monday, Mar 01, 2021
  • Last Update : 07:11 pm

US sale of Hong Kong consulate property held up by China

  • Published at 06:52 pm December 30th, 2020
This general view shows the outside of 37 Shouson Hill Road in southern Hong Kong
This general view shows the outside of 37 Shouson Hill Road in southern Hong Kong on December 30, 2020, part of a multibillion-dollar property of six mansions owned by the US Consulate General in the city AFP

In July, the United States ousted China from its Houston consulate, prompting China to seize the premises of the US consulate in Chengdu in retaliation

The sale of property owned by the US consulate in Hong Kong failed to be completed as scheduled on Wednesday after China unexpectedly stepped in and said its approval is needed, the buyer said, amid wide-ranging bilateral tensions.

Hong Kong developer Hang Lung Properties said in a regulatory filing that it was unable to complete the purchase of the residential property, the latest twist in the $331.5 million deal in an upscale location in the financial hub.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin later told a daily news briefing in Beijing that the application requirement was “in light of US regulations on the management of registered properties of foreign missions in the United States and based on the principle of reciprocity”.

“Only when they get the approval in writing can they proceed,” Wang said.


Also Read- US bolsters support for Taiwan and Tibet, angering China


Hang Lung, which agreed in September to buy the property used to house US consulate staff, said in its filing on Wednesday that it had received a letter from Hong Kong’s Land Registry last week saying that the property is “not an ordinary real estate property”.

According to the letter, Beijing advised the Hong Kong government that if the US Consulate General intends to rent, purchase or sell any real estate in Hong Kong, the US government must make a written application to China at least 60 days before the deal, and the deal shall not proceed without the written consent of the Chinese government.

“The matters as stated in the letter were exceptional and were not made known to or anticipated by (Hang Lung),” the developer said.

Hang Lung said that after informing the United States, the US on Tuesday contested the necessity to comply with the diplomatic obligations.

Hang Lung is evaluating and taking legal advice on possible actions, including exploring the feasibility of extending the time for deal completion.


Also Read- China to overtake US as world's biggest economy by 2028


A US consulate spokesperson told Reuters that more time is needed for the buyer and seller to complete the processes needed for closing on the property.

During the tender of the property, industry consultants said many developers in mainland China and Hong Kong were hesitant to venture an offer because it was seen as politically sensitive.

The former British colony returned to Chinese rule in 1997.

In July, the United States ousted China from its Houston consulate, prompting China to seize the premises of the US consulate in Chengdu in retaliation.

52
Facebook 51
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail