Vancouver a coastal seaport city in western Canada, has witnessed 21st century’s largest financial flows where money is shuffled frenetically by the affluent Chinese as secured assets abroad. According to the estimates of the Institute of International Finance, this amount accounts for about $800 billion since the middle of 2014.
The investments have had a dramatic effect on not only the physical and demographic transformation of the country but also on its economic transformations. Formerly old-fashioned places such as the Alberni Street also has a Prada boutique, which is one of the largest Rolex showrooms in the entire North America, along with a sixty-two story tower having a Shangri-La hotel.
The cost of housing in Vancouver is also rising at an increasing rate and there are several factors influencing it which include huge foreign buyers, taxation policies, improper zoning of land and a shortage of supply. Vancouver is not the business capital of Canada, the economic base of Vancouver being real estate.
Huge volumes of money arrive in Vancouver and that too at such a fast pace that there is no option of standing by. Wealthy investors invest in real estate which automatically increases the price of the land several folds making it difficult for the inhabitants to bear the load of it.
Government is taking measures for the controlling the prices of the land and restricting such activities but for those policies to be effective, the government needs to know specifically who owns which property in Vancouver.
Statistics Canada reported that more than 7% of the property in Vancouver until 2017 is owned by non-residents, though it did not release any facts or figures. Contrary to this, the Transparency International in 2016 found that almost half of the Vancouver’s expensive land which accounted for approximately C$1 billion was untraceable.
Source: Bloomberg.com, Reuters.com