31 Jan '13, 6am

Free to read: Singapore's surcharge on property threatens to rattle an uneasy relationship with foreigners.

SINGAPORE—An increased surcharge the Singaporean government has assessed on most foreign buyers to try to tamp down soaring property prices threatens to rattle Singapore's uneasy relationship with many of its rich foreigners while giving Americans an edge in one of Asia's hottest property markets. Enlarge Image Close Bloomberg News Singapore recently boosted the duty on residential purchases, a move that could rattle some foreign investors, although U.S. buyers are exempt. This month, the government boosted to 15% from 10% the fee added to the purchase price of residential property bought by many foreign nationals, including the Chinese, who were the second-largest group of foreign buyers last year. In contrast, U.S. buyers don't have to pay the surcharge, thanks to a bilateral trade accord with Singapore. Joy Stevenson, a U.S. native who has lived in the city-state for mo...

Full article: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142412788732337520457...

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