Chinese portal tries to lure investors back to Vancouver

The site, zh.rew.ca, will offer new material as well as translated content from parent site REW.ca.

"REW.ca recognizes the unique importance of the Chinese community in Greater Vancouver, and we are proud to offer this first of its kind, comprehensive Chinese-language real estate search portal," Ian Martin, general manager for REW.ca, said in a press release.

The new site will be in the simplified Chinese characters used in Mainland China -- Hong Kong, Taiwan and Chinese communities elsewhere in Asia use traditional characters – indicating that it is targeting a base of customers who have often been seen as a key driver of prices in the B.C. market.

Although the total impact of foreign investment inflows into Vancouver properties is subject to debate, prices in the Vancouver market have benefitted from investment on the part of new Canadians and residents as well as inflows from overseas investors, who can have properties managed by professional firms or family members residing in Canada.

While data are somewhat opaque in this area, the market does seem to be more influenced by events across the Pacific than others in Canada.

A Bloomberg news chart in late January demonstrated a strong continued correlation between economic growth in the People’s Republic and Vancouver home prices.

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