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China debt crunch

Chinese authorities move to calm 'mortgage strike' nerves

Homebuyers threaten to stop paying mortgages to protest unfinished projects

Some residential projects in China are running years behind schedule as top developers grapple with huge debt loads and financing problems. (Photo by Yusuke Hinata) 

HONG KONG -- China's top banking regulator has pledged to back a bid to speed up completion of hundreds of unfinished housing projects nationwide, after tens of thousands of homebuyers threatened to stop paying their mortgages in protest.

On Thursday evening, the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission said it would beef up coordination with housing and construction authorities, as well as the central bank, to help local governments in "guaranteeing the delivery of homes," according to a report by state broadcaster CCTV, which cited an unnamed official.

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