Hong Kong home prices hit another record high in February

Venus Wu

HONG KONG, March 31 (Reuters) - Hong Kong's private home

prices climbed for an 11th straight month in February, hitting

another record high, a government index released on Friday

showed.

In February, Hong Kong's private home prices index rose 1.1

percent from the previous month, to 312.8 from 309.4, according

to data from the Rating and Valuation Department. The February

figure was 14.3 percent higher than a year earlier.

The Asian financial hub has the world's least affordable

private housing and flats cost 18.1 times the gross annual

median income, according to a survey by Demographia, a private

firm.

Hong Kong's newly-selected leader Carrie Lam, who will take

office in July, said on Tuesday she was "very determined" to

tackle the high cost of housing, one of the top concerns of

foreign business executives about the city.

The government has vowed to increase housing supply and has

raised stamp duties to try to rein in prices, but to little

effect.

Property developers from mainland China have been submitting

record-breaking bids in Hong Kong land auctions, which is likely

to keep driving housing prices up.

(Reporting by Venus Wu; Editing by Richard Borsuk)