The Secretary of State for Trade, Jaime García-Legaz, announced on Monday that the government is considering changing the law to grant a residence permit to foreigners who purchase property in Spain amounting to more than 160,000 Euros.

Speaking at a breakfast briefing organized by The Economist, Legaz Garcia explained that this initiative is specifically targeted at Russian and Chinese market, where it already detected “a significant demand for housing in Spain” and that the policy change will start in "a few weeks".

Regarding the minimum price of 160,000 Euros, he said that it is a "balanced level" for "not give rise to a massive demand for residence permits" as it has ensured that a lower price could be a "pretext" for residence.

As he explained, there will be a meeting Tuesday with the ministries involved to deal with this regulatory change that the government aims to boost foreign demand for housing at a time when domestic demand is paralyzed and just outputs the surplus unsold flats built.

On this change are working works the Ministries of Economy, Employment, Development, Interior and Foreign Affairs, since last spring.

Competitiveness in the property market:

He assured that there are "lots" of real estate demand outside Spain and has pointed out that the Spanish housing market offers a situation "very attractive" to the considerable fall in prices has had.

Furthermore, we evaluate the competitiveness of the sector by its proximity to other European countries and the political and legal stability that offers foreigners.

"In a few weeks will start the immigration reform decree to boost foreign demand and help reduce the supply of housing stock," he said, after adding that this policy change has also been carried out in Ireland and Portugal and being valued by governments of other European countries.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo, moved on already the 14th November in the House of Representatives that the Government is accelerating residence permits for foreigners who buy property in Spain.

The President recalled that, after 17 consecutive months of falling sales, in August and September, they have improved. "It's a minor detail, but it is positive," he said.Rajoy: you have to sell the stock of housing

According to Rajoy, Spain needs to sell these homes and the construction industry go "forward" because it employs many people, both through direct and indirect.

"Therefore, it is an important sector for the Spanish economy as a whole and I hope he recovers," he considered.

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