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New Home Permits Issued In South Korea Fell 16.1 Percent In January

By February 27, 2017 at 1:39 am
In July 2016, the government introduced plans to control the supply of new apartments as it tries to curb the growth of mortgage loans. (Photo : Getty Images)

Permits issued to build new homes fell 16.1 percent from a year ago in January, according to government data released Monday, amid efforts by the government to limit the number of new homes as part of its plan to control household debt.

New home permits came at 39,898 in January, compared to 47,536 permits issued in the same month in 2016, according to data compiled by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport.

For the entire year 2016, construction permits issued for new homes in the country fell 5.1 percent from the previous year. New home permits came at 726,048 last year, compared to 765,328 issued in 2015, according to the ministry.

Since July last year, construction permits issued for new homes have been on a steady decline, except in November when they increased 3.2 percent from a year earlier.

Last July, the government unveiled plans to control the supply of new apartments as it tries to curb the growth of mortgage loans, which was then blamed as the biggest factor behind the increase in overall household borrowing.

In January, new home permits issued in the capital region, which includes Seoul and the surrounding Gyeonggi Province, dipped 21 percent from a year ago to 18,717. The capital region accounts for almost half of South Korea's population of 51 million people. New home permits issued in the rest of the country fell 11.2 percent to 21,181.

Last year, new home permits issued in Seoul declined 26.2 percent on-year, while those issued in the entire capital region dropped 16.5 percent to about 341,000. In the rest of the country, new home construction permits issued increased 7.9 percent on-year to 384,886.

Construction permits for new apartments plunged 20.3 percent in January, in line with the government's plan to lower new supplies. Permits for other types of housing, like row and detached houses, declined by just 6 percent from the previous year to 13,322. 

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