BEIJING, July 22 -- China looks set to start levying property tax in 2012 on a trial basis, sources from the Ministry of Finance said.
"Property tax will first be rolled out in several cities in a pilot program," the National Business Daily reported on Thursday, citing unidentified participants of a seminar held by the Ministry of Finance.
China will first pick several cities as it would be difficult to start levying the tax on a nationwide basis, said the newspaper, without naming any of the cities to be included in the pilot scheme.
But earlier reports said Shanghai and Chongqing would be among the first batch of cities to collect the tax.
Property tax is expected to add to the revenue for local governments and at the same time curb property speculation by increasing the cost of holding more than one apartment.
In late May, the State Council approved guidelines on the systematic reform of the economy submitted by the National Development and Reform Commission, which included the clause "gradually push the reform of tax on holding of properties."