A landmark skyscraper owned by Hong Kong's richest man Li Ka-shing has sold for a record of more than $5 billion, a report said yesterday, indicating that the city's booming property sector shows no sign of slowing down.
Li's CK Asset sold its 75 percent stake in The Centre, which is located in the city's bustling Central district, to a consortium led by a Chinese energy firm, the Hong Kong Economic Journal said, citing unnamed sources. The city's fifth tallest skyscraper would become Hong Kong's most expensive commercial building ever sold if the HK$40.2 billion (US$5.15 billion) deal goes through, the paper reported.
The sale would surpass a transaction earlier this year, where a prime commercial lot - occupied by a multi-storey car park also in Central - was sold off for HK$23.28 billion by the government to Henderson Land, which is owned by the city's second richest man, Lee Shau-kee. The deal will soon be announced and the name of the building may be changed, the report added. Hong Kong's surging property market has become a political issue as costs in one of the world's most expensive metropolises continue to soar, forcing some small businesses to close owing to sky-high rents while many residents cannot afford to buy or rent decent homes.