Sunday, August 30, 2015

Refugee housing and a New Life

Updated (at end) 

It is a huge problem for Europe, we are told in the Tavern, that hundreds of thousands of refugees are pouring out of largely Muslim countries and into Europe. They mostly do not stop in the countries they land in - Greece, Italy - but travel on to Germany, Britain, France and the Scandanavian countries. 

The further away from the middle east and Africa, the better, it seems. For them, at least.  They are mostly Muslims fleeing Muslim countries. 

Those countries to which they flee do not think much of the idea however as they are crowded and have housing problems of their own. And the refugees get 'bottlenecked' in places even more deperate.
Mediterranean Cruise it is NOT 
Migrants’ intense frustration at being stuck in Hungary erupted into a noisy unified protest at the country’s main railway station at Keleti, Budapest this morning, with further disruption planned for tomorrow at the start of the working week.
In scenes of increasing desperation, children as young as five held up signs on the shoulders of their parents as they whistled and chanted their way through two levels of the station.
For the first time, all of the migrants had a common voice despite their historic differences, and Kurds, Afghanis joined Indians, Syrians and Iraqis to plead to be allowed out of the country. Around a thousand people have been camping for more than four days at the station desperate to try move onto Austria or Germany.
There are tens of thousands of mainly Syrians and Afghans fleeing the Middle East. They have arrived in Hungary after a months-long journey.
Andy Bolt told us..... 
Invading Germany
Europe must change or be changed: 
Hundreds of angry migrants demonstrated outside Budapest’s Eastern Railway Terminus on Tuesday demanding they be allowed to travel on to Germany, as the biggest ever influx of migrants into the European Union left its asylum policies in tatters…
A refugee crisis rivaling the Balkan wars of the 1990s as Europe’s worst since World War Two has polarized and confounded the European Union, which has no mechanism to cope with the arrival of hundreds of thousands of poor and desperate people.
Germany is likely to accept by far the largest share. In the case of those fleeing the Syrian civil war it has effectively suspended an EU rule that asylum seekers must apply in the first EU country they reach.
But with trainloads of migrants rolling into Munich and Rosenheim from Austria and Hungary, it insisted on Tuesday that the rule was nevertheless still in force and urged other EU countries to abide by it.
Germany is fast realising it can’t keep acting noble in the way approved by most journalists. It may have to close its borders against illegal immigrants: 
The German Chancellor said for the first time that the Schengen zone, which allows passport-free travel across mainland Europe, cannot continue in its current form unless other EU countries accept their share of migrants…
Her comments ... signal that European leaders are beginning to question whether the EU can continue to exist with open borders as it struggles to cope with the hundreds of thousands of migrants coming into the continent from Africa and the Middle East…
Germany, Europe’s biggest economy, is set to receive 800,000 asylum seekers this year, four times the total for 2014 and more than any other EU country.
Where to put all of these people? How to give them a 'New Life' ?

In Oz we get many people with great sympathy for refugees, but not one of them is willing to house them, feed them, clothe them etc.,  'Personally'.  

It is always the Taxpayer who has to foot the bill. 'Someone else'

But there is 'someone else', a country that has already footed huge bills building cities that remain quite empty. 

One might wonder why the refugees do not go there. It is further away from the middle east than Norway.
Ghost cities: The bustling places with no people

THEY are the cities and towns filled with museums, big buildings and even mega highways.

The only thing missing is people.
This may sound odd, China having so many people. But the 'move' from the 'country' to the city is mainly to Beijing and Shanghai. The regions are being depleted.
From capital cities to mega towns, these are places that time, and people, have literally forgot.

In some cases, the cities wait for people to move in, while in others they have been left to rot.

Here are just a few of the places around the world which are full of buildings but are empty of residents to fill them.
Here are some - just a very few of dozens - examples. 


Opened in 2005 and hailed as the largest luxury shopping centre in the world with 659,612 square meters the owners expected 100,000 visitors a day, CNN reported.

However, one employee claimed it had just a 20 per cent occupancy rate and the visitor rate is far from that.
The video further below shows that 20% is wishful.

China has been adopting and adapting the 'European' style and feel, too, for those refugees who seek that instead of the middle eastern and African chaos they run from.
Dongguan is home to more 10 million residents and the luxury centre was built in a rural area, with some suggesting its residents are unable to afford the designer labels it aspires to sell.
Not 'just' China.

This purpose-built city became the capital of the country formerly known as Myanmar in 2005.

It was commissioned by the then ruling military junta three years earlier and hosted the ASEAN Summit in 2014.

The city boasts large government buildings, parks, golf courses, housing and even a 20-lane highway.
Its name literally means “seat of the king”, but the only leader who lives here is President Than Shwe.
It’s a space he shares with other government workers, military and police in a city designed for one million people, according to government figures. The city has a military-only zone, a ministry zone while its residential zone is filled with apartments which are allocated according to rank and marital status.
Chinese 'Italy'. The Italians would be delighted to send refugees here.
Filled with wide empty boulevards, Ordos has a central plaza that’s 2.5km long which seems massive when you consider the city has a population of just 140,000.
The roads are wide and even in peak hour appear to be empty according to SBS Asia correspondent Adrian Brown.

The city located on the outskirts of Ordos is another giant place which appears to be empty.
Originally designed to accommodate a million people, many of the city’s properties have been sold, but according to Brown, remain empty.
The homes were purchased for an investment when a mining boom which is now over.

China building mega cities but they remain empty ghost towns
A recent CBS 60 Minutes report in the US exposed dozens of new cities in China sitting empty - with the apartments snapped up as investments by the nation's wealthy middle class, then sitting empty as the owners fail to find tenants who can meet the rent.
Financial experts fear the ghost town explosion will lead to a housing bubble burst, following China's real estate boom which came after the government changed its policy 15 years ago and allowed people to buy their homes.
The middle class saw real estate as a solid investment, more stable than the sharemarket and offering better returns than the banks.
Government laws do not allow the Chinese to invest overseas.
Hong Kong-based financial analyst Gillem Tulloch said while the initial boom provided good returns, he fears the bubble is about to burst.
"What they (the wealthy middle class) do is they invest in property because property prices have always gone up by more than inflation," he told CBS's 60 Minutes.
"It's the main driver of growth and has been for the last few years. Some estimates have it as high as 20 or 30 per cent of the whole economy.
"I think they're building somewhere between 12 and 24 new cities every year."
But the huge growth has let to a glut of not just apartments, but entire towns and has forced the government to bring in a one-apartment law, where people can own just one property.
In Inner Mongolia, developers built the city of Ordos for one million people. But most of it remains empty.
Early last year the BBC reported Ordos was the largest ghost town in China, and that the housing bubble there had already burst.
Mr Tulloch told 60 Minutes China's government had spent an estimated US$2 trillion to build the cities and to keep the country's economy going.
"They've simply built too much infrastructure too quickly," he said.
"People are being moved into the cities but that doesn't necessarily mean they can afford these apartments which cost US$100,000. These are poor people moving into the cities, so they're building the wrong kind of apartments.
"There are multiple classes of people that are going to get wiped out by this, people who have invested three generations' worth of savings into properties will see their savings evaporated."
But a more balanced view, not really dispelling the theme, also is considered. 
The myth of China’s ghost cities
Ghost towns tend to start as boomtowns, and contemporary China more than likely has more boomtowns than any other country in history. No economy has ever risen so rapidly and no place has ever built so much so quickly. This rapid growth has resulted in peculiar side effect: ghost cities, everywhere.
Although the term “ghost town” is technically a misnomer in this case. A ghost town is a place that has become economically defunct — in other words, a place that has died. What China has is the opposite of ghost towns: It has new cities that have yet to come to life.
There are nearly 600 more cities in China now than there were when the Communist Party took over in 1949. This large-scale urban transition began in the early 1980s, when rural areas began being rezoned as urban en masse and the city took center stage in China’s plans for the future. In the early 2000s this urbanization movement was kicked into high gear. New urban developments began popping up seemingly everywhere — along the outskirts of existing cities as well as in the previously undeveloped expanses between them. Many cities doubled or even tripled their size within relatively short spans of time. In just 15 years Shanghai alone grew sevenfold and its population increased to more than 23 million from 6.61 million.
China’s broader urbanization movement shouldn’t be thought of as a developmental free-for-all. There is a method behind all of this building and an overarching framework. Ten massive new urban conglomerations called mega-regions have been proposed in strategic locations across the country. These are essentially city clusters of 22 million to more than 100 million people each that are to be connected through infrastructure, economically, and, potentially, even politically.
China’s fiscal policy all but requires local municipalities to comply with this broader urbanization plan. According to the World Bank, local municipalities must fend for 80 percent of their expenses while only receiving 40 percent of the country’s tax revenue. Land sales make up much of the difference, resulting in a buy low, sell high scheme, as municipalities buy up cheap rural land, re-designate it as urban, and then resell it at the high urban construction land rate — pocketing the difference. According to China’s Ministry of Finance, land sales raised $438 billion for China’s local governments in 2012 alone.
When developers purchase these new plots of land, they are prohibited by law from sitting on them. They must build something. While it is commonly thought that getting in on a new development zone early is key to making a big profit, these areas tend to lie far outside the bounds of mature, built-up urban areas. This often means constructing vast apartment complexes, giant malls and commercial streets in places that do not yet have much of a population base to support them.
Building a new city from the ground up is a long-term initiative, a process that China estimates takes roughly 17 to 23 years. By 2020, Ordos Kangbashi plans to have 300,000 people, Nanhui expects to attract 800,000 residents and 5 million people are slated to live in Zhengdong New District. China’s new cities are just that: new.
There is hardly a single new urban development in the country that has yet gone over its estimated time line for completion and vitalization, so any ghost city labeling at this point is premature: Most are still works in progress. But while building the core areas of new cities is something that China does with incredible haste, actually populating them is a lengthy endeavor.
When large numbers of people move into a new area, they need to be provided for; they need public services like healthcare and education. Therefore, a population carries a price tag and there is often an extended period of time between when cities appear completed and when they are actually prepared to sustain a full-scale population. This could be called the “ghost city” phase.
Most large new urban developments in China eventually move through this phase and become vitalized with businesses and a population. Essential infrastructure gets built, shopping malls open, and places where residents can work are created. In many of the biggest new cities, new university campuses will emerge and government offices and the headquarters of banks and state owned enterprises will be shipped in, essentially seeding these fresh outposts of progress with thousands of new consumers. From here, more businesses are attracted — often drawn by favorable subsidies like free rent — and more people trickle in as the city comes to life.
Some of China’s most notorious ghost cities saw phenomenal population growth in recent years, according to a report by Standard Chartered. In just a two year period from 2012 to 2014, Zhengdong New District’s occupancy rate rose doubled, while Dantu’s quadrupled and Changzhou’s Wujin district increased to 50 percent from 20 percent. Though there is still an excess of vacancies in these places, when urban areas of high-density housing are even half full there’s still a large number of people living there — more than enough for the place to socially and economically function as a city.
It generally takes at least a decade for China’s new urban developments to start breaking the inertia of stagnation. But once they do, they tend to keep growing, eventually blending in with the broader urban landscape and losing their “ghost city” label.
China has another significant advantage over Europe, as far as taking Muslim refugees. The Chinese authorities do not like muslims. They have a way with deterring Islam.

This is an advantage for any muslim refugee fleeing the chaos of Islamic life. Most are scared to abandon Islam because other Islamists will kill them.  They just might otherwise.

Any 'moderate' muslim that we hear so much about, wishing to escape Islam, the Koran, the evil anti-human creed that holds life so nastily as it beheads it, can find real refuge in China where the authorities would be right on their side.

A new life in a new country that would have no hesitation in cracking down HARD on extremism would benefit all of us.

Perhaps we can give china a hand. 

Food for thought and I have a cellar-full to wash it down with.

As a final thought, however, all that land used for the new cities. We saw the video of the reporter and his gummunt minder being shown around and speaking to the 'grateful' farmers, but is there perhaps more to it than meets the eye? 

Oh yes.



  1. In the middle of a triangle with Broome, Telfer and Fitzroy Crossing at each corner is a good place to put them - they can have all that land.

    1. I have often contended that Oz could absorb 100 million people with some ease, if they actually built their way. A big wall to contain an inland sea, surrounded by a hundred cities of one million people could be built by refugees. The preference for China above is mainly because China has a head-start in building cities from scratch and deals firmly with muslim terrorists. We don't.

  2. Oz had a bit of an issue with them in the C19th I believe.


Ne meias in stragulo aut pueros circummittam.

Our Bouncer is a gentleman of muscle and guile. His patience has limits. He will check you at the door.

The Tavern gets rowdy visitors from time to time. Some are brain dead and some soul dead. They attack customers and the bar staff and piss on the carpets. Those people will not be allowed in anymore. So... Be Nice..