Beijing Wudaokou Housing Prices: 100k RMB Per Square Meter

Housing prices in Beijing's Wudaokou neighborhood.

From NetEase:

Beijing Wudaokou housing prices 100,000 yuan per square meter, netizens: [Must be the] center of the universe

China Economic Net Beijing March 20 Report. Recently, netizen @AdRa1n posted a real estate agency’s home listings showing that homes in Beijing’s Wudaokou neighborhood are 100,000 RMB [16k+ USD] per square meter. This home in the Beijing Haidian district Wudaokou neighborhood school district is 37 sqm at 3.5 million RMB, or 100,000 RMB per sqm. Then property developer Ren Zhiqiang sighed: “The original price back then was only 4000-some yuan per sqm.” One netizen expressed: It is Wudaokou that is the center of Beijing, the center of the universe, and now I’ve given up all hope of buying a home in Beijing.

Industry insiders say the trend in housing prices in rising quickly, mainly because of its school district, close to Tsinghua and Peking Universities. However, many netizens still cannot accept it, with netizen “围脖-你的心情” scoffing at the housing prices: “Looking at these housing prices is like a joke!” Netizen “齐不凡” mocked very “aesthetically”: “Early in the morning, while on the balcony of my 36th floor home, I poured myself a cup of 37℃ water, and softly blew dry the rust floating on top. Although it is smoggy outside the window, I can close my eyes, and rely on the sounds that not far away is the university I was just 300 points shy of getting admitted to, with busy office workers rolling back and forth on the subway and public buses like ants. I delightfully listen, listen to the gasps of the lowly lives of the downtrodden. This is Wudaokou, the center of the universe.” Netizen “周伯通招聘” who came to Beijing for work laughed: “A 100,000 per sqm home can be rented for just several thousand yuan, Little Zhou [referring to self] expresses being extremely blessed; As a migrant worker, I don’t even need a Beijing hukou to be able to live in such an world-class high-end community as Wudaokou, so Little Zhou expresses being extremely proud! 4000 yuan/sqm in 2000, an increase of only over 20 times, truly not expensive!”

The Two Meetings that just ended confirmed the goal of continuing to tightly control housing prices, but numerous netizens still find the high housing prices unacceptable. Netizen “边城” said: “Even if my wages were to ride a rocket they would never catch up with rising home prices.” Whereas netizen “典道体育” sighed: “In Beijing, it’s not about using money to buy a home, it’s about using one’s life to buy a home!”

Opposite the many scoffs and sighs, there were also many rational netizens who analyzed and provided suggestions. Netizen “Seven_张” believes: “In the 10 years since 2003, and if we go by wave theory, after Beijing home prices experienced the 2nd and 4th adjustments of the 2008 and 2011 waves, it should already formally have entered the 5th wave. Speculators have reached the unloading stage, but liquidity has been removed by the State Council’s 5 [Housing Market Regulation] Policy Measures, leaving no alternative but to continue pushing the prices up, moving towards following suit. No one buys at 100,000 [per sqm], but it is hung there to create anticipation of rising prices, to attract people to buy the houses next to it at 60,000 [RMB per sqm].” Whereas netizen “韦世亨” proposed: “If you want Beijing’s housing prices to drop, it’s simple. Right now, the main thing is that the best schools are all centralized in Beijing. As long as the government stipulates that anyone regardless of possessing a Beijing hukou can enjoy equal school admissions, Beijing’s housing prices will naturally fall.”

Comments on NetEase:

YO而然 [网易福建省厦门市网友]:

Imperial capital of the universe.

网易广东省深圳市网友:

Years ago, two baskets full of money for two baskets of rice; Years later, a house full of money for a house!

Z哥0 [网易湖南省长沙市网友]:

Why not use this money to go live in a second-tier city? Good house, good car, good air.

大连通通网络 [网易辽宁省沈阳市网友]:

Just like a vacuum, the core electrical components ought to be more expensive, right?

网易云南省昆明市网友:

Fill in the blank —
First line: Speaks the truth, does practical things, considers the people in all respects; Second line: Seeks innovation, seeks development, always sharing the burdens of the country.
Third line: No such person.

First line: Speaks lies, does bad things, breaks the law committing crimes harming the ordinary common people; Second line: Drives luxury car, lives in luxury homes, oppresses the people as local tyrant.
Third Line: _________

大大的良民啊 [网易北京市网友]:

You think China’s housing prices are expensive but that’s because you guys are poor. Of China’s leaders, which one of them truly believes housing prices are expensive? The more expensive the happier they are.

网易云南省昆明市网友:

Housing developers say: If land prices weren’t included, China’s housing prices are the lowest [in the world].
National Development and Reform Commission says: If taxes aren’t included, China’s gas prices are lower than America’s.
Anti-Corruption Discipline Inspection Commission says: If corrupt officials are disregarded, China’s civil servants are the most honest.
China’s Red Cross states: Without embezzlement, China’s supervision of donations is the best.
The Bureau of Quality Supervision emphasizes: If there weren’t unscrupulous businesses, China’s food is the safest.
The Bureau of Statistics’ statement is the most practical: If the ordinary common people weren’t included, Chinese people’s lives are the happiest.

网易北京市网友 [songzhaoy]:

Wrong, the best way is to even out school resources. Then put an end to waidiren going to school in Beijing. This way, Beijing’s children can get into schools, without having to “break their heads” to do so. When I was small, every two to three hutongs had one primary school, and we never saw anyone raising housing prices. Overall, it’s still waidiren who have impacted everything in Beijing. The weather, public transportation, housing, food, sanitation…

网易北京市海淀区网友 [浮萍王子]: (responding to above)

If there weren’t waidiren, Beijingers wouldn’t even be able to eat shit. If people were allowed to take the gaokao anywhere or the test questions were made uniform, Beijingers would all fucking fail and be lucky just to get into occupational schools. Just how many Beijingers are bosses, they all fucking work for waidiren, and they still have the face to talk…

网易宁夏网友 [俺为祖国喝茅台]: (responding to above)

The person upstairs [above], in reality, during the planned economy era, when your entire family was still in the countryside raising pigs, Beijingers’ lives were already very good, and on the contrary, what Beijinger’s shat out was better than what your entire family ate. Without waidiren, Beijingers would not be eating shit. Now in the reformed and opened up era, you also have the opportunity to come to Beijing’s hutongs to sell fried scallion cakes, so you can stop envying Beijingers. If there came a policy where those without Beijing hukous could not work in Beijing, you’d have to go back to the countryside to raise pigs, while Beijingers would continue living well, because their lives were already good, so without you entering Beijing to work, their lives would be even better, really~~~

野无渡 [网易浙江省舟山市网友]: (responding to above)

Life is not fair, there’s no need to complain about this point. As the capital, resource policies being biased towards it is also natural, there’s no real reason to grumble about it. But this kind egotistical attitude of the first and third floor [songzhaoy & 俺为祖国喝茅台] is truly unbearable. First floor, you motherfucker, it’s been how many years since [China has] opened up, and you old relic are still talking about putting an end to waidiren, is overpriced housing really so simply a result of waidiren? You’re just being a cunt. Third floor, you motherfucker, selling fried scallion cakes and raising pigs are both about making money through one’s own hard work. People can go where they please, or is your Beijing fucking independent? Going there requires a visa and how great that would be? And how other shouldn’t envy you Beijingers. I don’t envy shit. Envy 200,000 RMB per square meter? Envy your smog? Envy your sandstorms?

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  • qiyulin

    I can’t even afford to take the sofa in Wudaokou. it’s all Koreans buying up the area anyway.

  • BiggJ

    It cost a lot to die of lung cancer now a days,

    • maja_ldm

      oh, shut up. I recently had to move here (renting….), the place is all right but the air is probably the worst in the whole city… I just can’t understand why people seem to refuse to use the 4th ring and drives through Wudaokou at rush hour……..

      • maja_ldm

        *drive

      • BiggJ

        I just can’t understand why people seem to refuse to use the 4th ring and drives through Wudaokou at rush hour……..

        Face.

      • BiggJ

        Come talk to me in 10 years and tell me how your lungs are doing. It’s only going to get worse…not better.

        • El Puma R.

          that’s the main reason why I left China. Nothing better only worse

  • mattsm84

    These people would be better off saving their money anyway. Once that housing bubble bursts, a lot of people are going to lose a lot of equity.

    • DavidisDawei

      I have cautioned my friends in China this is not sustainable, but they do not believe it is a bubble that is going to burst. They see prices rising year after year and don’t believe their government would let that happen…
      I have run the numbers with them…renting is a much better option right now IF prices are going to drop, but Time will tell who is right.

      • Zhegezhege

        There’s an enormous and obvious investment bubble and a lot of hubris in China at the moment.

        • DavidisDawei

          Ni Hao Zhegezhege,
          Are you saying that the Chinese believe there is a bubble and they are buying property anyway?

          • Zhegezhege

            Ni hao to you too,
            It’s a massively complex issue so I kept the comment short.
            However, I think it’s fair to say that there are definitely many Chinese that go in to real estate because they consider it the least-bad legal option. And this is a contributing factor towards the sustaining (for now) of the bubble. But then there are also plenty of people that are just believing the hype.

      • mark

        When the crunch comes, they will just print money to let nominal property price remains stable. When everything increases by 5 times relative to property price, it means that the real value of property has dropped by 80%.

      • vincent

        David what do you think about the outlook for Zhuhai though, they’re building that bridge to connect to Zhuhai to HK I believe, do you think that Zhuhai would be more cushioned against a real estate bubble burst? As I see it people in HK and Macau may look towards Zhuhai due to the relatively cheaper housing and the fact that HK has limited land to build on, your opinion?

        • Alain

          Zhongshan is also expensive, I’d imagine Zhuhai is insane.

          • vincent

            Yeah it is @disqus_WZIcugfsjv:disqus and I expect it may become more so in the future but let’s see what happens.

          • Alain

            Personally I don’t like too developed parts of china, too many haughty uppity waiguoren and too expensive. Better to be in a poorer part of China where you can use your foreign status well and drink and smoke cheaply. I certainly would not be happy in those concrete jungles, guangdong is too developed for my liking. But vive la difference, I just like my 24 rmb for 12 bottles of beer.

          • vincent

            I actually mirror your feelings about the too developed parts of China, I couldn’t stand Shanghai, Guangzhou or even Shenzhen, but I settled on Zhuhai because it’s fairly slow paced, sort of a perfect mix between rural and urban areas, but I guess it depends on where in Zhuhai one lives as well.

        • DavidisDawei

          Hey Vincent,
          That could definitely impact property values – I had not heard about a bridge being built from HK to Zhuhai. I have been on the bridge from Shanghai to Ningbo which is over 20 miles long. Spanning HK-ZH would be a more difficult project.

          In Shenzhen, Hong Kongers have driven up the prices there. I have a friend who lives in Buji (Shenzhen) which is not a convenient location, and he sees Hong Kongers buying up the property there as well. It makes sense for Hong Kongers to buy property in Mainland China because the prices in Hong Kong have become even more absurd than in Mainland China.

          Waterfront property will always charge a premium. As they say, buying property is all about Location, Location, Location. I love these buildings(photo below) along the walkway in Zhuhai. Me personally, when things go into a frenzy, I take my money and go – I’ll take a calculated risk, but I am not a gambler. I do not think property in China is of equal (or higher) value to what I can buy in the USA. In the end, Your house is a place for you to raise your family and enjoy life – it is best to live there debt free…any investment property comes down to crunching the numbers…Zhuhai is in a great location – that will never change. Steve Wynn put his money into Macau – I’d say he has guarantees and assurances we could never get.

          Is it even possible to get a reasonable deal now? Can you carry the property and all the expenses associated with it even if it does not generate revenue for you? Even with all the construction going on in Zhuhai, I walked into these compounds and noticed so many of them are vacant! Sorry this is so long..hope I answered your questions.
          Cheers,

          • Alain

            Problem is zhuhai…the sea is not swimmable….even I heard many admit full of oil. It’s no carribean resort, let us be practical now.

          • vincent

            Yeah the sea isn’t that great but I do see some people going swimming, I wouldn’t though the water just doesn’t look very inviting :P

          • Alain

            This could be the fly in the ointment, the thorn in the side as far as I am concerned. It’s not exactly carribean or mediterranean, so advertising coastal living, but no swimming,,,well? Thanks for your reply.

          • vincent

            The solution might be…swimming pools? haha

          • Alain

            Fair point, the problem is, well I rented a nice apartment in Zhongshan, problem was the swimming pool could not be used because it was treated like a park by the locals.

          • DavidisDawei

            Vincent; lots of cute and friendly women in Zhuhai; you picked a great place to live in China – notice the little guy in the basket- haha

          • Chat2Arseholes

            There’s 3 dogs in this photo.

          • DavidisDawei

            Really?

            I think she’s cute and she was a doll/very friendly in person.

          • Alain

            I’d imagine it being a SEZ most are very material minded, I’d avoid there, go somewhere like inner mongolia.

          • DavidisDawei

            Alain,

            It was still enjoyable being along the ocean; even if it was polluted…cheers.

          • vincent

            Sorry for the late reply David, I agree with you Zhuhai is a great place to live and the people are quite friendly as well I get lucky always picking great places to live lol :)

          • DavidisDawei

            I didn’t see a beach in the Gongbei area of Zhuhai, but did see a lot of fisherman – see photo below.
            I was hiking along the coast in Dapeng a few days earlier and I came across a creek entering the ocean there. It was so beautiful, my initial impulse was to sit down with a cold beer and let the water flow over me, but then I thought of a conversation I had the night before when a local told me of the cancer/pollution problem from local companies dumping chemicals into the water. It was too cold anyway – Such a shame.

          • Alain

            Raw sewage in the river, not worth it now is it?

          • DavidisDawei

            Agreed – There are things we can’t see that can make us sick and/or kill us. So tempting, but not worth the risk…

          • vincent

            Very interesting and thanks for the feedback David, here’s a link about the bridge http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hong_Kong%E2%80%93Zhuhai%E2%80%93Macau_Bridge , I’d have to say prices in Zhuhai have come down marginally but that was when the government announced some measure to cool down the property market, it hasn’t gone down by much though.

            I live very close to the place where this photo was taken, if I am right the sea should be right behind, it takes me about 5 minutes to walk to this area and I agree these buildings are quite nice. Most of these buildings, and the building you see in the background are very expensive, I believe that most of the units look empty because the owners (from HK and Macau) just buy the property but don’t actually live there.

          • DavidisDawei

            Vincent,
            Yes – the water and walkway were behind me.

            If that tunnel/bridge is completed, that will boost property values since it makes it that much easier for the typical Hong Konger to gain access to.

            Zhuhai does not feel as crowded or populated as Shenzhen. In addition, Zhuhai does not feel as developed as Shenzhen – therefore it makes sense they would go there.

            Try to identify where that traffic will be entering – will it be Gongbei? People will need to go thru customs. I do not know Macau or Zhuhai very well Yet. You have an advantage, you know the area. Make someone an offer they can’t refuse – haha.

    • lostalien

      and when it does go pop! i WILL BE LAUGHING ABOUT IT.

  • BiggJ

    I should sell my 3 floor 5 bedroom lake side house with 3 acres of land.”4000 squared meters per acre” in Canada and buy 7 squared meters in Beijing. Seems like the right thing to do….same price.

    • YourSupremeCommander

      They will throw in smog for FREE.

      • Mark

        For a small nominal fee, you can get to eat drainage oil, arsenic pork, paraffin rice and other special delicacies that the evil West health authorities had strigently stamped out!

        • Dr Sun

          like horse meat in your beef you mean ?

    • KS

      Little J, please give me your contact info so I can give you a job. You obviously have way too much time on your hands to comment on every article. As a fellow Canadian it is embarrassing.

      • BiggJ

        You’re right, I do have a lot of time on my hands. Im on vacation with my wife in china. How about I give you a job…..come do some directional oil drilling in Fort Mac with me in the fall. You can make more there in 6 months then you can in china for 10 year doing teaching or whatever you do. What do you make teaching? $3000 a month? I make 5 grand a week. And I only work 7 months a year. Just because you don’t have a house, don’t hate on me.

        • KS

          Little J, guess I touched a sore spot. I am sure you are the English teacher or trainer or whatever you want to call it. You are one of those arm-chair know-it-alls who prognosticate from a trailer park in Saskatoon. You give Canadians a bad name. My job offer still stands, with an added bonus of manner training.

          • BiggJ

            What? Why all the hate? I don’t understand what your problem is. You can think and say whatever you want about me. For real buddy.

          • Alain

            That is what a forum is for, surely? Your 5 grand a week can’t buy net silence, my lad.

          • mr.wiener

            Cool, You got stalkers! Better put a big fence round that apartment of yours.

        • Guest

          What are you prattling on about? Put up or shut up as you stay in the states….is there such a job going? get back to us. You sound like Rickinchina, only he will actually listen and be a buddy of everyone, unlike you, you pompous priggish know all!

          • BiggJ

            http://ca.indeed.com/cmp/The-Crossing-Company/jobs/Horizontal-Directional-Driller-98c5c777f5c9a14d

            I’ve been doing this job for 7 years for the same company, not this company i posted. you might only get 3000 a week, each company pays different. Just like any job you get raises every year. You have build up to this job. Even starting out you can get 300$ a day.

            It’s not fun work. It’s cold and shitty. And you are out in the middle of nowhere for weeks a time. Sometime they bring a helicopter to fly you out if the road is bad. Thats always fun.

          • El Puma R.

            I’ve heard about such job and I even considered doing it back when I had no clue what to do with my life. And then.. China came along.. I can say I didn’t make 300 dollars a week, but I can speak and write chinese and I don’t have to live in China anymore. =)

        • Alain

          You are canadian then, my apologies. Learn some humility, like from princess diana, now am I right or am I right?

          • mr.wiener

            Why did Princess Diana cross the road?
            Inertia.

          • Alain

            Now then my dear canadian boy, I rattled elijahs cages some time back, and I have been in hiding but have now decided to come out of retirement and return to public life. Take the gloves off so to speak, and come into the ring hitting hard, hahaha. When I’m fully recharged, I’ll respond in kind to your anti royal comment, dear boy. And most Canadians love the royals, now am I right or am I right? Well I have not been wrong on most things in my 40 years, and so won’t concede on this either

          • mr.wiener

            Well you are wrong about one thing again. I’m Australian, not Canadian, you Pommy wanker you :)

          • Alain

            Fair enough, I have a soft spot in my heart for aussies, just not canadians so much. I was too nice to Elijah, I’ll put my kid gloves back on as your an aussie. No worries mate!

          • Dr Sun

            At least Aussies have the convictions of their ancestors behind them.

          • Alain

            My dear lad, I see you like a fight, I tell you what once I’ve fully recharged we shall have at it. In the meantime, I’ll be in the wings warming up, I might not wear the gloves though, break your little nose hard, it may be necessary, now am I right or am I right?

          • mr.wiener

            I could never figure out the enmity you had towards Elijiah. I thought you were just being a dick, but that is your prerogative.
            Leave Dr Sun alone, his virtual marriage to linette is suffering enough.

            If a good stouse is what you crave then might I suggest a certain japanese historical revisionist…?

          • Alain

            Dear boy, elijah was racist towards mainland chinese, if he just adjusted himself a tad, he may have been happier. anyway, I wish him well, but I know I am not wrong, he was being racist towards others. Good night, Al

        • mark

          I do not have any technical qualifications nor experience. Only a bachelor in accountancy from a reputable university in Singapore. Any 5k/week job for me?

          • Alain

            rmb, or?

          • BiggJ

            Well starting out you can make at least 30$ an hour. Just just doing bullshit manual work on an oil rig. You don’t need collage or anything. Just need all your safety tickets. And you can get all them in a week. Then just man up and go to work. If you stick with you get payed more and more every year. It’s like alot of jobs. the higher up you are the less work you have to do. If you are strong enough and can lift 50kg with ease. Then give it a try.

          • Alain

            Good god man your priorities are all arse or ass backwards. Breaking your back, paying over the odds, lifting heavy stuff, get thee to China young fella me lad, and dont work as hard, drink more, smoke more, I won’t say wo shi dui de, because you know it makes sense,hahhaa

  • La Mano Gaucha

    Might as well buy a relatively decent apartment overlooking NYC’s Central Park near the Guggenheim, or else in a posh area of Nice or something comparable. Who needs Beijing, anyway, especially at those absurd prices?

    • BiggJ

      Yeah I agree, If you’re going to spend that kind of money at least live somewhere nice.

      • bert

        Like NYC or Nice right?

    • bert

      This is a stupid statement. You might as well buy some property in a nice clean rural area where you wouldn’t have to deal with crime, people and pollution. But of course you won’t be able to go to the Guggenheim everyday like you planned or the back streets of Nice. Stop showing off.

      • La Mano Gaucha

        Beijing is a city. The ad hominem isn’t working for you. Keep drinking your Kool Aid.

  • vincent

    There has to be a cheaper way to get lung cancer and other respiratory illnesses.

    • DavidisDawei

      Smoking;
      those are your two choices over time when you smoke..(lung cancer and other respiratory illnesses).
      Don’t understand why so many Chinese men smoke.
      A lot fewer Chinese women (not including Hong Kong)

      • Kai

        Haha, yeah, that’s probably cheaper.

        That said, it’s pretty easy to understand why so many Chinese men smoke. It’s the same reason why so many men around the world do, and why so many men in the past have. Smoking has been a popular and widespread habit and thus a lucrative industry for ages.

        • DavidisDawei

          Hi Kai,
          Are you saying men in China start smoking because of peer pressure or because everyone else is doing it so they think it is the natural thing to do?

          • Alain

            No no no, smoking will help you meet friendly chinese who will help you out, light a fag, drink their wine, enjoy their food, you know it makes sense now?

          • Dr Sun

            never trust a non-smoker, ever ! in any country, they all have issues – serious mental issues and can’t be trusted.

          • Alain

            Indeed and I am happy to smoke chinese cigs…to your health sir, they buy far more than they would in the UK or HK both of which I have no interest in,

          • El Puma R.

            I will still be a smoker even after I quit tobacco. ;)

          • Alain

            Nothing wrong with smoking. All older foreigners prefer smoking in China, why, because it is cheaper. My salary stretches here more than in the UK and that is fact. I wont go home to pay almost 5 pounds a pack and all the snivelling hyenas can take a leap!

          • El Puma R.

            My life stretches more in my country than in China and that’s a fact. Salary? better in China but in the long run the job itself is less productive, no roots to grow and there’s no fucking way I’m letting my kids live in such could of smoke.

            I said I’ll still be a smoker even after I quit tobacco because I have my own garden full of flowers :) the ones you can and can’t smoke.

            ;)

          • Alain

            I earn 10,000 rmb a month and a provided flat. Granted, 10,000 rmb is nothing in the UK but I don’t care what people in the UK think, there is no work for me there, as I have a bad back like, so english teaching where I can be seated in front of a class of receptive students, suits me to a tee. I like cheap beer and smokes, so that also rules the UK out for me. Now some may be happy earning high salaries in Canada and the UK, but what good is rule of law if you cant walk the streets at night, pay over the odds for everything and are taxed on everything. I would not go back to do manual labour, no way, and anyone who does so is an idiot. End of story!

          • DavidisDawei

            What?? Is this a joke Dr Sun?

          • Kai

            Those are certainly among the reasons but I was generally alluding to why smoking is so popular worldwide in general. The reasons for picking up the habit are fairly common and there’s a massive industry behind its popularization.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cigarette_smoking

  • come on mate that’s not expensive, 100,000 Yen = 1051.97 USD

    • KAMIKAZIPILOT

      Read again, it’s Yuan, not Yen. 1 USD = 6.2 RMB

      • YourSupremeCommander

        It has nothing to do with reading, it has to do with algebra 101.

        • La Mano Gaucha

          Are you high? :-)

          • YourSupremeCommander

            Not as much as you sir.

    • La Mano Gaucha

      100,000 Yuan = ~16,000 USD

    • Alphy

      …. Dude you are bad at either math or English like what the others have pointed to. Based on the article’s apartment it is 37m2 apartment for 3,500,000 RMB, or if you convert it to US standard it is around 565,000 USD for a 400 Sqft apartment.

      Even worst the 400 sqft is not usable footage. It is accounting for common areas like stairway and parking outside, average out in the entire complex. You usually take off 30% off of that figure for what you actually get in China.

  • Dr Sun

    Why any body would want to live in that smog ridden, damp, freezing cold culture-less city with the worst food in China is beyond me anyway.

    • meo fio

      Lots of mongolians

      • Dr Sun

        Most Chinese north of the Yangtze are Mongolian.

    • Mark

      Because the rest of China is even worse, where the Govt is effectively the mob itself?

      • Zhegezhege

        Shanghai is far superior to Beijing.

        • Dr Sun

          Even Wenchang is better than Beijing, LOL

          • Alain

            Anywhere is better than being unemployed back in the west with rule of law, now am I right or am I?

          • Dr Sun

            you have a point.

          • mattsm84

            Two years ago, I would have agreed. But now? Far better to serve in Heaven than to rule Hell.

          • El Puma R.

            indeed ! We just got back home with my Chinese wife and she’s loving it! some things might be a little expensive but she’s enjoying every little bit of it and one thing she can’t stop looking at that’s the blue sky, everyday. We might not have a job yet but we’re here for just two weeks and it’s already taking off for us. I truly don’t understand what’s with the Chinese stomping over each other to buy a house (if you can call it a house) that you can’t see from 50m because of the pollution and gets awfully dirty within 20 minutes after you opened the windows… and you have to give it back after 50 years. Oh I know now… they don’t care about that shit because all they look at is the screen of their iphone.

            Ok gtg now the sun is shining over a clear sky, my longboard is ready and my friends are waiting for me.

          • Alain

            You will need a job my friend, I wager you shall be back in China sooner or later. there is no work, trust me, good luck though!

          • mattsm84

            Why would you assume he won’t get one? If people came here only to wait out an economic storm, then those same people should be gearing up to leave because that storm has past. Look at the numbers related to GDP and job growth, the recession is clearly over.

          • Alain

            When you have an influx of esl teachers to China and young spaniards fleeing to central and south america, you know that all is not rosy in the west, not rocket science, is it? You don’t have to be an economist to see the “bigger picture”. China/south america, they are going through their boom, the EU and the USA is in decline, although by EU standards the UK is weathering the storm quite well. Just differences of opinion, and who wants to work as a toilet cleaner in new york when you can’t even walk the streets at night my lad. No, get to China, where you can walk at night! Now am I right or not?

          • mattsm84

            You’re not, and economics is, believe it or not, a (social) science. Things aren’t actually getting better here, quite the contrary. For most ESL teachers, wages have remained stagnant over the course of the last two or three years while the price of goods and services has increased. The amount of money that I have to dedicate shit like groceries and utilities has more than doubled in that time, as have other consumer goods. Inflation without growth in wages is itself a hidden tax. For ESL teachers, that’s decline. Meanwhile, in the US, GDP growth has remained steady, job growth has been constant, and unemployment is dropping. The recession, as I have said, is over, and the notion of American decline is beginning to look very, shall we say, 2008.

            Part of the reason for the difference in perspective that you seem to be harping on is that In China you can get a job where you work roughly 25hrs a week, make roughly $24,000 a year, and live in a 100 square meter apartment with your mother, father, aunt, uncle, or in-laws and still be considered to be a relative success and well within the middle class. In the US, such a person would be considered an underemployed failure. Now, the difference is that in China the person would be an ESL teacher while in the US they’d be an office temp. But really, in terms of job satisfaction, how different is collating and goofing off on reddit from teaching some little emperor the correct way to say “usually”? So its not that life in China is especially great for an expat, its just that everybody’s life is kinda shitty.

            Plus, if this person’s is married, his wife can get a job too–if she’s fluent in English and Chinese, she can probably get a good one–where she makes more than $10,000 a year. Hell, if the make around $25k a year they are at the median income, and well on their way to home ownership. And I mean an actual home, with like a roof, and a yard.

            So lets not go nuts, teaching China’s a working vacation, something you do after college before you get you’re life together, but its not ever really much else.

            Oh, and about crime. The difference is that crime in the west gets reported and that the police actually do their jobs. Other than that, its not that different. Especially if you’re white and middle class, as most ESL teachers are.

          • mattsm84

            About the Uk weathering the storm. Growth hasn’t exceeded 1% in 5 years. Austerity has failed those poor bastards, and things aren’t going to improve for them until the lib dems can break off from the conservatives.

            So there, you were wrong about everything.

          • Alain

            Fair enough I was wrong about the UK. But NOT everything, FT’s still come to China even though wages remain static. Explain that one then? I know I’m not wrong, so one of us is a barefaced brit liar.

          • Alain

            Thanks for your reply. Can’t agree with all of it though I am afraid to say, but differing opinions are always good, if anything it will get your blood boiling and that can’t be bad can it? Will keep you young and sharp, haha. Now matthew my lad, I’ve just come back in a rather stroppy mood and was meant to be relaxing this weekend, but am afraid you will just have to let me reply to you on this matter.

            You’re not, and economics is, believe it or not, a (social) science.

            I never claimed to be an economist, are you one?

            Things aren’t actually getting better here, quite the contrary. For most
            ESL teachers, wages have remained stagnant over the course of the last
            two or three years while the price of goods and services has increased.

            I noticed some things have gone up, however big cities don’t equal the whole country. Other things remain the same price, and I am happier here than in the Peoples Republic of Canada or the EUSSR of which I hold a passport of both, neither one to me is suitable to live, unless you can convince otherwise? Show me where I can earn 10-20000 rmb for doing next to nothing with a free flat in England and I will gladly go back home, even then, tsingtao for 7 quid (GBP) in a chinese restaurant in London, sorry, no thanks. I broke my back (literally) for years in the UK and not willing to do it again. End of story here as far as I am concerned!

            The amount of money that I have to dedicate shit like groceries and
            utilities has more than doubled in that time, as have other consumer
            goods.

            Personally I think you are doing it wrong, good god man, on the money you earn as an ESL teacher in China you should be living like a king, easily affording a chinese girlfriend, and drinking and smoking away. One tip, eat and live like a local, my good man.

            Now I do have to get packed and set for my trip to Yangshuo for some r and r, but rest assured once I’m fully recharged I’ll be back hitting hard without my gloves like. Not personal mind, I just like playing devils advocate and mixing up the pot a bit, and if you are ever around my way, the beer is on me.

            Cheers and Beers.
            Al

          • mattsm84

            No offence, but why is it always the Brits that love it here? Talk to an America, Canadian, Aussie, or an New Zeelander, and with only a minimum amount of prodding they’ll admit that this place doesn’t hold a candle to where they are from originally and that they one day plan to go back and get their real life started. The Brits on the other hand will just rave about how great the cheap booze and smokes are, and how wonderful it is not to ever have to do anything but hang out in bars. Is it that the whole island filled with people that aspire to be nothing more than shiftless middle aged booze hounds or do they all just end up as expats in China?

          • Alain

            Fair enough reply, no offence taken, I like to think no matter how heated things get around here, we can always have a beer and a chat. You see, for kiwis, canadians, aussies and the seppos, they probably have it very good back home, might be nice places. But if you come from a council estate in manchester, now with parts resembling south central LA, but with not the same weather, not to mention London, men wielding swords outside parliament, for many brit FT’s, China is a nice, safe and inexpensive place to while away your time. I am of the firm opinion teaching in China is better than being on unemployment benefit or the ‘dole’ back in the West. Those aussies and kiwis come here, because things must not be that great at home either, cant be much fun chasing huntsman spiders out of your moms spare room on the sheep farm in the middle of the dusty dry outback can it now?! BTW, I think you’ll meet more americans and aussies (perhaps less kiwis and canucks) although I’ve met plenty of those too, who have a love of the beer in China. It takes all types, does it not?

          • BiggJ

            I don’t think it has all to do with there is not any work in western countries. It’s there is no work for curtain people. And these people can get job if they adapt to their surroundings. If someone spends 5 year at a university learning some bullshit like “drama” or something that is not practical. Well maybe china would be a good place to come and be a teacher. I assume it would be hard to find a job with some of courses these universities are teaching. I think the best thing to do is learn a trade. Like welding or electrician course or something. Always high paying jobs for that stuff in Canada, i don’t know about anywhere else.

            I was reading that Canadian immagration is doing this”fast track” visas for foreigners with trade skills so they come work because there is not enough workers to fill the jobs. There are job if you are doing the right thing.

            And about China I do agree it’s pretty safe. And the cheap booze and smokes is cool. I don’t know about the UK, but smokes in Canada are around $12 a pack for 25 smokes. It’s all tax. Everything is tax. To me china is cheap as shit. Everything….rent, food, smokes, taxi everything is dirt cheap. Compared to what im use to paying. Even with all that, I don’t think i could live here for a long time. The only thing that would stop me is the bullshit pollution. I can taste it in my mouth. Im not disagreeing with. This is just another way of looking at it. Your situation is a good, you have a fucked back, so teaching english a good step. To each his own. Just have fun doing what you’re doing. :)

          • Alain

            Thanks for your reply, enjoyed it immensely. Hope you are enjoying Canada to my man. Have a labatts ice for me, would love to find that in China.

          • BiggJ

            Labatt blue:) I like my local Nova Scotia beer “Alexander Keiths” …Actually Labatt bought the Keiths brewery a few year back. Anyway…pointless story. lol

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Keith%27s_Brewery

          • Alain

            Labatt blue, good call. Thanks for letting me know.

          • BiggJ

            No no, you’re right, there is Labatt Ice and all kinds of different shit. :) Chinese beer I must say just get me full more then anything. Not enough Alcohol in it. How much is in chinese beer? like 2.5 %? If so, it’s way too weak. This is alittle off topic, but Molson Canadian a few years back”and they still do” had these mini kegs. I collected all the hockey team ones. Each one had like 5L of beer in it. :)

          • Alain

            Yeah, generally there isnt really any 5 percent chinese beer knocking about I’d say the average is around 3 percent mark. Thanks for the pic!

          • BiggJ

            This reminds me. The coolest fucking thing I ever seen a beer company do was “coors”. They had this can that when the beer was cold enough the mountains on the can changed to blue.:) I just thought that was the shit, I don’t even really like coors all that much but i bought it for a while just because of that. lol

          • Alain

            I recall a bottled brand of lager in the UK that had something similar, my mistake, it was newcastle brown ale, it had something on the label that showed when it had got cool enough in the fridge to drink.

    • Alain

      My dear boy, I knew a south african dishwasher who told his boss to stuff it, bought a one way ticket to Beijing, got a job teaching in Inner Mongolia, married a nice fragrant local lass and never looked back. I used to load pallets as a fork lift truck driver in’t warehouse like until I got signed off on the disability with a gammy back, and then decided China was the future. They listen to me and I earn me 10,000 a month with ease. No, no, Beijing is paradise so some, esp those unemployed back home, cheap beer, cheap smokes, you just need to adjust your vision a bit my dear lad. Wo shi dui de hai shi wo shi dui de?!

      • Dr Sun

        ” I earn me ” ESL teacher by any chance ?

        • Alain

          Aye, indeed, that was local slang though like, you are very perceptive, but then I am from the far northern frozen reaches of England, so the weather in Beijing does make me shudder not one jot. Now listen dear boy I plan on relaxing this weekend and then taking a short break, but you can be sure, I’ll be back with gloves off, a heavy hitter right on your beak so to speak, that rhymes, hahaha, ……atcha!

          • Dr Sun

            Geordies don’t scare me, lol

          • Alain

            Close but no cigar, don’t want to give the game away (and not game pie either) but North, but not the locale of broon ale swilling knuckle draggers. Fancy another shot at the title, sun yat sen, I promise I’ll done my gloves, but I’ll still come in swinging, smash you hard, hahaha

  • meo fio

    Rent house, buy gold

  • BiggJ

    I never understood the whole idea of buying an apartment. When I first came to china my wife said her brother bought a new house. In my mind I thought a House on it’s own piece if land, maybe a nice front lawn or something. She said he payed 300,000CND dollars for it.1 dollar=around 6.1 or 2 yuan. I thought this has to be a nice house. So we go there and it’s just a 2 bed room apartment. It’s pretty big as far as apartments go….and it’s a new building….but it’s not worth 300,000 dollars. He was showing me around and was so proud of it. And thats cool, he did work hard to get it.And it is nice. It’s just for that money you could get something so much better. I understand you need to live close to work and shit……it’s just too much…..and in china to boot. I was thinking why not just rent some place? And then you can move when you want. And what if the value goes down after a few year and you want to sell it? I rent an apartment now for 2000 yuan that is just as good as his apartment. The rent prices where I stay in china are cheap compared to the city. So I get a nice place for cheap.

    Her brother was asking me about my house in Canada and wanted to see some pictures of it. I had a few on my phone and he could not believe it. And I payed 1/2 of what he paid for his place. Mind you I live in country. I don’t have any neighbors, a lake you can swim and fish in. An open face fire place place. A garage and a barn. If you wanted something like that in Beijing it would cost you 750,000,000 dollars or more.

    • sendtodave

      “I never understood the whole idea of buying an apartment.”

      I bought a new apartment in a decent community, 30 minutes to the Macau border, 110 m^2 plus a huge “garden.” Cost a bit about 525,000 RMB (not decorated).

      I’m OK with this.

      • BiggJ

        That’s cool. Just myself I would rent apartments. They don’t feel like home to me and they never seem like a long term thing. Just just my opinion, I was never raised in a city. I like the country lifestyle. Like my own land and space to roam about. It’s better if you have pets too.

    • Alphy

      It’s all about preference, and as social beings, people are making decisions based on what we see other accept as reasonable. Many people would trade proximity over size and privacy. Majority of Chinese has this mindset. Not because they don’t want a big house with privacy, but because most people were already willing to accept cheaply made apartment at sky high prices as long as they have the convenience they seek.

      Luxury apartments and their so call “villas” are hot sell in China as well. Though mostly they are bought for investment purposes. Actually the more expensive they are the better, as they could hold more cash in lesser amount of property and usually they go up in price faster than cheaper ones.

      • maja

        I know plenty of people who has to drive hours going to work, and some of them choose to buy far away apartments just because they were slightly cheaper. this is in Beijing.

      • BiggJ

        I agree it all about preference. The only thing I like about living in a town or city is things are right there when you need it. Where I live if you don’t get what you need before 8pm or 9 on the weekends. You’re pretty much stuck until the next day. That includes gas and cigarettes. :) I enjoy everything else though but that my opinion. In china I don’t know much about what people look for in housing. Also in china don’t you have to give back the land or house after so many years? like 70-80 years or something? How does that work?

        • Alphy

          Ya my parents have a place in “middle of no where” USA as well. They love it because they like the house and scenery it gives them. Though of course they have cars and driving within 10 mins would allow them to still buy any essentials they need.

          You are correct about the land ownership. No one owns land in China, you just get property usage rights. No one really knows what would happen when mass amount of property runs out of usage rights. What most people expect is that the government will charge them extra for extension for the usage rights. Without usage right the house can get demolish legally as many have witness in China’s force evictions.

          • BiggJ

            Lucky them, 10 mins drive brings me to the village where there is everything I need, but closes early, 8 on weekdays. Or I can drive 35 mins to a town with a 24 hour gas station.

        • Alphy

          The thing that heats majority of people to buy home is urgency to protect their assets. Just today my coworkers here were just discussing with me on no matter how much raise they get here in China, as long as you don’t have a house you at the loosing end. Wage here never had match up with housing growth. If they buy late, they could loose out to 10 years worth of saving. It doesn’t matter what job you have or how hard you work, unless you invest in housing, most Chinese feel their money will only loose value and there will be no security for the future.

    • maja

      Canada prices are probably cheaper then most… in the last couple years small apartments no bigger then 80sqm have been sold for more then 200k€ near my parents’ house in Italy, and that’s in a small village with nothing around.

      • BiggJ

        It depends where in Canada. Some places are crazy fucking expensive for bullshit really. My house is Nova Scotia, the prices are really good there. Any city in Canada I think it pretty expensive. Alberta and BC are also expensive.You can buy a nice house with some land in Nova Scotia for like 75,000$. Some are like 50,000 for a nice size house and land. You can get something pretty nice for 125,000.Like next to the ocean or a lake.

        • Alphy

          Housing prices by any Chinatown in Canada is quite high.

      • moop

        actually canada’s own very large real estate bubble is coming to a head soon

    • DavidisDawei

      Bigg J,
      I’m with you…living in a building with 1000 other people is not a house.

      Curious to know – Please ask your brother in law,
      does he pay a monthly fee for building security, common charges, current and future maintenance, etc?
      When the building has a major repair required (new roof, sewage line), who is responsible for paying for this?
      Thanks

      • BiggJ

        I asked my wife this morning and she said he pays every 6 months or once a year for security, and trash and a few other things like gardeners. She don’t know about building repairs. She don’t know how that works. She is going there today and I told her to ask him. But if I had to guess I would hope it would be the building owner who took care of unforeseen shit that happens or new repairs without the people consent. Then again, this is china…anything is possible.

        • DavidisDawei

          OK – Thanks BiggJ,
          In the USA, depending on the complex, condo/HOA(Household Association) fees can run anywhere from as little as $300/month up to $2,500(or more) Per Month.

          These fees are used to cover all common charges and to perform routine and unscheduled maintenance. It is not uncommon for the HOA to send out an additional bill to every owner in the complex for unforeseen expenses.

          You also need to pay property taxes and utilities in addition to these HOA costs and your mortgage. It is interesting to find out how these expenses are covered in China since this needs to be factored into the overall cost of ownership.

          It would not make sense to buy property and let it sit empty in the USA (in most cases) because of these additional expenses.

          • Canman

            There is a monthly property management fee, here in Beijing it is around 2-3 RMB/square meter/month for newer/average (non-luxury) apartment. Aside from that and utilities the only other cost is the public heating fee (if the apartment is not self-heated) which depends on the district but averages to around 30 RMB/square meter/year. This along with no annual property tax makes it fairly low cost for speculators to just sit on their empty apartments.

          • ScottLoar

            Added to the fact many absentee owners simply don’t pay the management fee as well as more than a few who yet live in the apartments. In my building in Shanghai the management fee and management company is continually disputed by a loud minority of owners who simply don’t want to pay and are committed to spending some goodly portion of their waking hours to reduce the fees by a few RMB per month or twisting the situation to their advantage no matter how shameless. Such people would rather let grime run down the building walls than spend money to clean, and this in a building where the selling price is above RMB40,000 per square meter (and that price would be thought cheap).

          • DavidisDawei

            Thanks for your reply Canman

    • El Puma R.

      And they’ll throw lung cancer for free

  • And that’s essentially $5,000 per sq. ft.
    You can purchase an apartment in this tbh
    http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2013/03/20/superscraper_432_park_avenue_is_officially_on_the_market.php#more

    • Yariguy

      Not quite. $16,000 per square meter is closer to $2,000 per sqft. There are 9 square feet in a square meter, not 3.

      • BiggJ

        Almost 11..like 10.something

  • The Acidic Hasidic

    Im actually working in real estate here in beijing, not near wudaokou though.

    For inside 4th ring road, there are no current prices under 30k/ sqm. At 30k you are looking at south west 4th ring.

    For us to develop our housing complex it cost us 4000 RMB/ sqm. We were recently selling at 38.8k a sqm, but we have stopped selling until the government allows us to up our prices (not my desicion) to 42k a sqm.

    If it were me i would firesail and get rid of our remaining inventory at 30k RMB/ sqm. a close to 700% profit seems resonable to me and at that price would sell the remaining 15% we have unsold in less than 1 day. we cant do that because the banks wont let us, and they have better guanxi than we do.

    • I mean…I understand many accounts of this are a bit…skewed at worst and misinformed at best, but do you feel there isn’t anything resembling a bubble at this point?

      It’s certainly a different scenario than the US (here, it was consumers who got fucked, in China’s case, it’d be the banks, developers, and Municipal Governments…and speculative buyers), but to be honest, even in China this level of demand can’t sustain it for another 10 years?

      I just want to know if this talk, while usually blown of proportion, is based in some reality.

    • El Puma R.

      30k per square meter for an apartment where everything will be broken within to years located in the middle of a place full of smog? 700% profit in a land where 70% of your people live below the line of poverty?
      All this makes no sense to me. The market and the boss and all those tiny excuses some people have to keep carrying on with their lives.

      You people have no soul and if some of you still do, you’re happy to be slaves of something very, very evil. You better pray the Chinese “Liberation” doesn’t happen again because if it does, it’s your ass that’s going to be hanging way up somewhere in beijing.

      I’m so glad I left China and even though I really miss certain things, I’m truly happy I don’t have to put up with such nonsense anymore.

      • Alain

        I wager you will come back when you have no job in Argentina. Trust me on this one, unless you have means to support your lotus blossom that don’t require working for a living?!

        • I actually do, and I’m absolutely ok with you being comfortable in such an intrascendent job.. you know, I actually enjoyed it but I can´t say I wouldn’t change it for anything, that’s just dumb.

  • ScottLoar

    What’s a person to do? Without residency permit in Shanghai or Beijing the chances of your child entering a good school as preparation for entry into a good university are slight. So, move to Shanghai or Beijing and the prices of real estate soar.

    What’s a person to do? The economies and opportunities in Shanghai, Beijing and Shenzhen (even though the place is chaotic at best and dangerous at worst) are much better than elsewhere and so people come, driving up prices of everything but especially real estate.

    What’s a person to do? Investment venues are untrustworthy, stock market returns uncertain, savings returns low, and without a scheme of social security people must rely on their own savings to ensure health care, retirement, and provide for their descendants. The only place money can realize a good return on investment is in real estate or parking it overseas. Ergo, real estate prices soar.

    • DavidisDawei

      Scott,
      Reminds me of the game musical chairs…it is great as long as you aren’t the one left standing when the music stops…
      Unfortunately for me, I am not one of the chosen few or politically connected so I won’t be told to get my money out before the Boom…I have never been good at timing markets.
      In China, I see prices most people can’t afford…if these were premium properties I would expect that…since those are exclusive…but they are not
      Cheers

  • DanielKoh

    still much cheaper than singapore

    • sendtodave

      I was wathing an Anthony Bourdain “Layover” where he went to Singapore. He commented on how it was impressive that there was not much traffic.

      His Singaporean friend laughed, and said that is because the permit to own a car for ten years costs up to 100000 dollars (about $80k US).

      Singapore ain’t cheap.

      • Astaroth

        Sounds a ghastly place!

  • lostalien

    will never buy a house here.

  • lostalien

    i could buy a house, car, wardrobe, put a kid through a life of school for these prices.
    the gov MUST do somethign about it.

    • moop

      the govt created and exacerbate the problem

  • dave

    Funny read! First off just because its advertised for that doesnt mean they will get even close to that price. Look at Erdos. those fuckin idiots were so proud to have found coal under there shacks and farms that they have tried to drive the price up on everything there. Now its like a ghost town.
    I really dont know why expats are flogging to china. Unless from A more economically developing place. Chinas more expensive then the west. You get shitty housing for the money and to eat a proper meal costs at least 25 dollars. and theres still a chance your eating prefabbed veg and 60-40 split on your meat between street garbage and boxed cow. Unless you work for a multi national company making at least 6000 dollars a month with housing bonus and such beijing is a shit whole. Look at all the moronical esl teachers bragging about there 30 dollars ano hour. But dont have a pot to piss in after there long binge at the bar. Even for the ones who are saving there 1500 a month at what expense are you doing it. Chinas the fucking asshole of the world. Take as much as you can from chinese and get out. Treat it like they do

    • Alain

      Look at all the moronical esl teachers bragging about there 30 dollars
      ano hour. But dont have a pot to piss in after there long binge at the
      bar.

      There is your answer right there, don’t drop 600 rmb a night at some loud, noisy, smoky bar. Simples. Not all esl teachers are morons, I know I’m right, dear boy.

  • Jack

    Chinese houses are garbage. I should know, I am living in one and it is falling apart…

  • donscarletti

    I am sympathetic to Shanghainese who complain about “waidiren”. Shanghainese consider themselves to have built that city and feel resentful for others coming in to harvest the fruits of its prosperity.

    Beijing however was built through the nation’s coffers. The government collects taxes equally, but spends disproportionately in a single city. What business is there in Beijing that is not financed by the central government, provide services to the central government or provide services to people who work for the central government? Even the tourist industry thrives because of what Qing and Ming built with the nation’s funds.

    What does Tsinghua have to do with Beijingnese? It was built by America and financed by the Qing in reparation for destroyed property and dead Americans in Shanghai. It was built to educate Chinese, not specifically Beijingnese. When most ambitious Chinese study outside their home province, why can’t Beijingnese do the same? Are the dormitories in other provinces not suitable?

    If the people of Beijing want to act churlish, they should find out where their ancestors came from and go there to keep out outsiders.

    • maja

      if waidiren want to come, which is absolutely understandable and agreeable, they should have care of the actual life they have here.. btw, I’m talking about people with a degree living in shared apartments, I feel it’s them bringing the prices up, thinking they have to push every available coin in lodging and saving up on eveything else.

      tl;dr it’s a situation far too complicated to be summed up in terms of locals and immigrants, but since you brought it up: some immigrants should learn FASTER how to get around in their new homes.

  • Nowen

    All aboard the real estate bubble collapse train? Anyone?

  • TraderPaul

    When will the Chinese and Arabs stop building empty 1br apartments and theme parks in the desert, and start building something useful and which contributes to civilization such as a space elevator or a transatlantic tunnel?

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