RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Property cooling measures averted potential financial meltdown: home affairs minister

But lifting them is still under discussion, he said.

Singapore could have suffered a disastrous housing bubble similar to what the US went through if it weren’t for the cooling measures placed on property, according to Home Affairs minister K Shanmugam.

In a recent speech, Shanmugam said the cooling measures were inevitable as legislating to stop people from buying a second or third property was out of the question.

Shanmugam said the risk was mounting in Singapore’s entire financial system were borrowing a lot of money to buy a second and third property--on the basis that someone would come in and rent.

“That's when we put in our ABSD (Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty) and TDSR (Total Debt Servicing Ratio),” Shanmugam said.

“Otherwise the entire banking and financial system would have gone through what the US and Europe went through,” he added.

Additionally, Shanmugam said discussions for the lifting of the measures are still ongoing, and will depend on the economy’s health and the market’s stability.

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