A UBC Geographer says the out-of-reach cost of housing in Metro Vancouver is the result of an effort by politicians to attract wealthy immigrants and investment from Asia.
UBC Geographer David Ley says politicians simply have not done due diligence in terms of putting boundaries around foreign investment.
He points to last month’s provincial budget.
“I think the last budget was a case in point where the ministers basically said, ‘we want investment. We don’t want to upset people’s equity,’ which means, of course, we want to keep prices high.”
Ley says the bar to bring in wealthy immigrants into B.C. and Canada was set well lower than other countries, including the States.
“Those people have done nothing wrong they are simply taking advantage of opportunities that have been made available to them. One case in point one of the business programs required that immigrants set up a business and hire one Canadian. The US equivalent of that program is that you have to hire ten Americans.”
He says politicians seem to be taking the attitude high housing prices are simply the cost of doing business in encouraging investment and trade from Asia.