Ireland tells Vietnam how to spot the warning signs of a real estate bubble

Aug 18, 2011. After suffering one of the most destructive housing market bubbles in recent world history, you might not imagine that Ireland would be the first port of call for those seeking advice on how to develop their property sector.

But, at a seminar funded by the Irish government’s aid organisation in Hanoi on Thursday, Irish officials argued that precisely because of their country’s painful experiences, they have some useful lessons to share with Vietnam, which is facing its own overheating property market.

Although interest rate hikes have cooled the market slightly, the surge in property prices over the last few years means that central Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam’s respective political and commercial capitals, now have some of the world’s most expensive real estate in a country with average annual GDP per capita of just $ 1,200.

As in Ireland, a huge expansion in credit has fueled a construction boom, which has coincided with the liberalisation of property ownership laws by Vietnam’s government.

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