WORLD

New Zealand To Ban Foreign Buyers From Purchasing Homes

The ban comes in an effort to cool soaring property prices.

25/10/2017 11:19 PM AEDT | Updated 25/10/2017 11:19 PM AEDT
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Prime Minister-elect Jacinda Ardern said the ban will be introduced by Christmas.

New Zealand Prime Minister-elect Jacinda Ardern says she wants to ban overseas buyers from purchasing existing homes as prices grow more unaffordable for local residents.

A bill to ban such purchases will be introduced by Christmas, Ardern told a workers' conference on Wednesday.

But trade and foreign ownership restrictions could hurt New Zealand's reputation as an open economy and antagonise the likes of China.

Trade between the two countries has grown to more than $NZ20 billion ($A17.8 billion) a year, and Chinese President Xi Jinping called the relationship "unprecedented" in its depth.

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Auckland, New Zealand.

Many of Labour and New Zealand First's policies during last month's election campaign drew on voters' concerns that immigration and foreign buyers of local homes were putting too much pressure on infrastructure and house prices.

Ardern's pledge follows Australian states such as NSW and Victoria who have doubled the foreign-buyer stamp duty surcharge. Victoria also axed the stamp duty concession for off-the-plan investors in July.

The rise in New Zealand house prices over recent years has been fuelled by strong immigration, low interest rates and limited housing supplies.

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