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Taiwan has 1.56 million vacant house units: statistics

2011/11/03 18:09:15

Taipei, Nov. 3 (CNA) There were 1.56 million vacant housing units in Taiwan as of the end of 2010, according to a report released by the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) on Thursday.

This figure showed that 19.3 percent of Taiwan's housings had been left unoccupied at the end of last year, representing an increase of 1.7 percentage points, or 328,000 units, compared with 10 years ago, the report showed.

DGBAS conducts a nationwide census of housings and population once every 10 years.

Keelung City in northern Taiwan had the highest house vacancy rate, at 25.2 percent, and the capital city of Taipei had only 13.4 percent of housings left unoccupied, the lowest among all cities and counties in the country.

DGBAS officials attributed the upward climb of the house vacancy rate to an increase in the number of housing units and to a slowdown in population growth over the last 10 years.

The number of housings hit 8.074 million, up 1.4 percent annually on average since 2000, while Taiwan's permanent population totaled 23.124 million, growing only 0.4 percent per year, lower than the 0.9 percent annual growth rate for 1990-2000.

New Taipei City saw the largest increase in the number of housings, up 222,000 units from 10 years earlier, but Hsinchu County, also in the north, registered the highest house growth rate of 35.7 percent, though it actually got only 42,000 new housings during the period.

DGBAS defines vacant housings as those without permanent residents or those that are left unused for any other purposes, including housing units that are waiting for tenants or to be sold. (By Lin Hui-chun & Bear Lee) npw