(Bloomberg) -- Hong Kong postponed the tender of a plot of residential land after protests over the controversial extradition bill blocked access to government offices.
The plot, located near the city’s former airport, is estimated to fetch as much as HK$13.6 billion ($1.74 billion), according to Knight Frank LLP.
“It’s probably because of the trade war and recent social movements, the government may be worried about the impact on the number of bidders, amount of the bids and government revenue,” said Thomas Lam, an executive director at Knight Frank. Market confidence could be affected if the number of bidders isn’t up to expectations or the tender fails, he said.
Protests over the bill, which would allow extraditions criminal suspects to be extradited to mainland China, turned violent Wednesday, with police using tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse the crowd. The Central Government Offices will be closed Thursday and Friday amid security concerns.
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It’s the second time this week the protests have affected the property market, with Goldin Financial Holdings Ltd. dropping its successful HK$11.1 billion bid for a commercial land parcel, citing “recent social contradiction and economic instability.”
Developers led declines on Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index for a second day Thursday, as spiking interbank rates added to concerns over a lack of sales catalysts.
The Hang Seng Property Index fell as much as 2.2%, following a 2.8% slump Wednesday. Hang Lung Properties Ltd. led declines, dropping 2% as of 11:44 a.m. local time. New World Development Co. slid 1.6%, heading for its biggest two-day loss since November 2016.
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