• Kyodo


Residential land prices in Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya rose by an average of 0.5 percent in the 12 months to Jan. 1, while commercial land prices increased by an average of 1.6 percent, both rising for the first time in six years, the government said Tuesday.

While average residential prices nationwide edged down 0.6 percent, and commercial property dropped 0.5 percent, the number of survey locations seeing land price increases jumped to around 7,000 from about 2,000 in 2012, the Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Ministry said in an annual report.

The highest land price was ¥29.6 million per square meter at Yamano Music Co.’s head office in Tokyo’s Ginza district.

The survey showed that land prices are recovering not only in the major metropolitan areas but in other locations as well.

A ministry official attributed the recovery to rising demand for condos and offices due to the Abe administration’s aggressive economic policies and low interest rates.

Some survey locations, including in Tokyo, saw price increases of more than 10 percent, but the official denied the possibility of an economic bubble backed by speculative purchases.

While commercial prices rose in all three major metropolitan areas, residential prices edged down 0.1 percent in Osaka.

Both residential and commercial land prices increased in Sapporo, Sendai, Fukuoka, Kusatsu in Shiga Prefecture and Naha in Okinawa. However, land prices declined at more than 70 percent of the survey locations in non-metropolitan areas.

In Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima, the three prefectures hit hardest by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, the number of survey locations that saw price rises increased due to growing demand for land amid reconstruction work.

Residential land prices rose 2.5 percent in Miyagi while Fukushima saw a 1.2 percent increase.

A residential location in Ishinomaki, Miyagi Prefecture, saw a 15.1 percent increase, the highest among residential locations.

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