The next phase of Saudi Arabia’s white land tax will not be rolled out before 2020, Reuters reports.

The Saudi government in March began levying a 2.5% land tax on undeveloped urban land (white land) planned for residential use, in a bid to address the housing crunch in urban areas.

The tax on undeveloped land may also include commercial areas in the near future, the Arabic language newspaper Okaz says, quoting Mohammed Al Mudaiheem, the white land tax scheme supervisor at the Ministry of Housing.

The official says that the ministry is not aiming to control property prices or influence market dynamics.

“Landowners will still have to pay the fees for the tax bills that were already issued even if they sell the land,” he adds.