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Families With 3 or More Kids to Get Housing Benefits

Posted February. 27, 2009 08:58,   


President Lee Myung-bak yesterday announced plans to grant preferential treatment in home purchases for families with three or more children to raise the national birth rate.

At an emergency economy meeting at the presidential office of Cheong Wa Dae yesterday, he ordered officials to help larger families by giving them preferential rights in obtaining leased apartments or offering houses at reduced prices.

“At a time when the falling birth rate has emerged as a national problem, we need multifaceted measures to encourage procreation,” presidential spokesman Lee Dong-kwan quoted President Lee as saying.

“Now is the time to provide houses to those without them and the young generation when housing prices are falling due to the economic downturn. By doing so, we can revive the economy and boost the welfare of the people.”

Accordingly, the Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs Ministry is discussing for families with three children or more the expansion of the special provision for houses; lower interest on mortgage loans; extension of lending limits; and lower house prices by differentiating installment sale prices.

Saying houses must be built at proper places for people who need them, President Lee ordered the building of houses within a city instead of focusing on new towns in suburban areas.

He told Strategy and Finance Minister Yoon Jeung-hyun and Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs Minister Chung Jong-hwan, “Look around the vicinity of Seoul aboard a helicopter. Then you’ll see greenbelt areas packed with greenhouses. If houses are built in such areas, we won’t need additional infrastructure such as roads and schools.”

On pushing for privately funded projects, the president said, “Given that starting a new project takes more than a year, expediting existing projects led by provincial governments is a more effective way.”

yongari@donga.com jefflee@donga.com