Mon, Jul 30, 2012 - Page 13 News List

MND to auction rights to land to fund rebuilding

RIGHT TO GIVE RIGHTS:The ministry plans to use the proceeds from the sale to pay back a NT$74.7bn loan it took to renovate old military living compounds

By Amy Su  /  Staff reporter

The Council for Economic Planning and Development (CEPD) has approved the Ministry of National Defense’s plan to raise funds to rebuild military residential compounds by auctioning superficies rights to two plots of land in Taipei’s prime real-estate areas by the end of this year.

In the past, the defense ministry raised funds for rebuilding old military residential compounds by selling the land it owned.

“But the ministry has to come up with new ideas to activate assets, after the legislature passed the law to prohibit the sale of large-area, state-owned land parcels last year,” Lin Yao-tsung (林耀宗), a director of the ministry’s General Political Warfare Bureau, told a media briefing held last week at the council.

Under the ministry’s plan, auctions for two large plots of land in Taipei’s Songshan District (松山) and Zhongshan District (中山) are to be held by the end of the year. The ministry will grant the winning bidders superficies rights for 50 years, which allow the bidders to build in the designated areas.

The plan is expected to help the ministry repay a NT$74.7 billion (US$2.48 billion) loan for the purpose of rebuilding military residential compounds by 2019, as well as adding NT$72 billion to the national coffers over a period of 60 years.

Earlier this year, the Ministry of Finance also twice tried to auction the right of superficies of a development project in Taipei, but failed to attract any bidders.

Market watchers said potential bidders were less interested in the deal because the winning bidders would be required to construct two buildings for the finance ministry’s use as part of the deal.

In contrast, the defense ministry’s plan does not have such requirements and Lin said the plots of land would be open to commercial use.

In related news, the finance ministry will continue the auction for 12 land development projects tomorrow, with the base prices for the right to build set between 30 percent and 50 percent of their market price to attract more bidders, compared with between 50 percent and 70 percent recorded in the past two years.

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