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BUDGET 2019 TO PLACE MALAYSIA ON STRONGER FOOTING

According to the Malaysian Prime Minister, the upcoming Budget 2019, to be tabled on Friday November 2, 2018, will be designed to place Malaysia “on a stronger footing”. This will ensure the prosperity of the rakyat and generations to come. The Government’s policies will always be business friendly and responsive to new ideas and suggestions. The government remains confident that the new policies will create a stronger base in creating a balance between prudent spending and to ensure support for the private sector.

(The Star & NST, 27/10/2018)


 

SELANGOR CYBER VALLEY CAN ATTRACT INVESTMENTS

Selangor Cyber Valley (SCV), the 11th new growth area being developed by Selangor State Development Corp (PKNS), is expected to be able to attract investments and businesses into the state. The 1,285 acre SCV is strategically located, with mixed development encompassing residential units, an industrial park, a commercial centre and education institutions. SCV is also equipped with a high-speed network of fibre optic cables and an environmental detection device to indicate air quality.

(The Star, 29/10/2018)


 

MIDA SEES 35% INCREASE IN FOREIGN INVESTMENTS IN 1H18

The Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA) recorded a 35.3% increase in foreign investments to RM26.5 billion in 1H18, mainly attributed by the manufacturing and primary sector. Despite rising competition and a challenging external environment, MIDA denoted that Malaysia remained as a competitive investment location for foreign investors. China accounted for RM6.5 billion or 43% of total foreign investments, followed by South Korea (16%), Japan (10%), Singapore (5%) and France (4%). Domestic investments led with RM53.7 billion, contributing 67% to total approved investments, all within the services, manufacturing and primary sectors.

(The Star & The Edge Financial, 30/10/2018)


 

GOVT PROJECTS RM21 BILION IN YEARLY SST COLLECTION

The government is projecting an SST tax collection of RM21 billion a year compared with RM43 billion in GST tax collections, according to the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry. The reduction in tax collection would increase consumer purchasing power and assist in boosting retail businesses. Though traders are required to charge lower prices and earn moderate profits while growing their businesses, some retailers are still selling existing stock at high prices. Under the SST, 5,300 types of goods were exempted from taxes compared with 500 items under GST.

(The Edge, 31/10/2018)


 

MALAYSIA WELCOMES CHINA DEALS

Malaysia welcomes foreign direct investment from any country, including China, as it benefits the country via capital, technology, value creation, jobs and skills transfer, according to the Economic Affairs Ministry. Malaysia will have much to gain from China’s Belt and Road Initiative, which will help bridge the infrastructure and connectivity gap between Malaysia and Asean countries.

(NST, 31/10/2018)


 

MAKING MALAYSIA AN INNOVATION HUB

The government has unveiled plans at the launch of the National Policy on Industry 4.0 (Industry4WRD), to transform Malaysia into becoming one of the main destinations for the high-tech industry by 2025. Plans have unveiled a four-pronged strategy for Malaysia to be on a stronger footing within the manufacturing sector via higher productivity, contribution, innovation and increasing the number of high-skilled workers. The manufacturing sector has contributed 23% to the gross domestic product, whereby 98.5% of Malaysian small and medium-sized enterprises fall within this sector. In relation to innovation, it is envisioned that the country could be ranked among the top 30 nations in the Global Innovation Index by 2025, currently Malaysia is ranked 35th in the index.

(The Star, The Edge & NST, 01/11/2018)


 

KL CITY PLAN GAZETTED, COPY AVAILABLE FROM NOVEMBER 12, 2018

The Dewan Rakyat was informed that the Kuala Lumpur City Plan 2020 has been gazetted by the Attorney-General’s Chambers to promote sustainable planning and development in the capital. The plan prioritises environmental quality, social equity and economic prosperity and will be available from November 12, 2018.

(The Edge, 02/11/2018)


 

KEDAH MENTRI BESAR REVISITS KULIM AIRPORT PROPOSAL

The federal government’s fiscal condition will not deter the Kedah state government’s optimism to construct the proposed Kulim International Airport (KIA). The proposed cargo airport, which was first mooted in 2013 and 2016, is expected to be primarily driven by private investments. The state government is finalising the detailed design of the airport before presenting it to the federal government by the end of 2018. The KIA was proposed to serve as a regional airport for the northern states of Peninsular Malaysia and Southern Thailand, which is designed with two runways and was slated to commence with the reclamation of 1,483 acres of rubber estates in Sidam Kanan, near Padang Serai. Currently, Kedah has two airports, which includes Sultan Abdul Halim Airport in Alor Setar and Langkawi International Airport.

(The Malaysian Reserve, 30/10/2018)


 

STATUS OF LPT3 TO BE KNOWN ON NOVEMBER 2, 2018

The planned East Coast Highway 3 (LPT3) project is still under review and its status will only be known during the tabling of the 2019 Budget on November 2, 2018. The 147 km LPT3 project covers three districts in Terengganu, Kuala Terengganu, Setiu and Besut, and six districts in Kelantan, namely Pasir Puteh, Bachok, Kota Baru, Pasir Mas, Kuala Krai and Pengkalan Kubor.

(NST, 30/10/2018)


 

MMC-GAMUDA TO CONTINUE UNDERGROUND MRT2, WITH FURTHER COST CUTS

MMC-Gamuda will continue the Mass Rapid Transit Sungai Buloh-Serdang-Putrajaya Line (MRT2) project with a larger reduction in costs for underground works. MMC-Gamuda has agreed to increase the margin of cost reductions of the underground works to RM3.6 billion from RM2.13 billion. MMC-Gamuda would continue to be the contractor for the underground works at a total cost of RM13.11 billion. In totality, the total cost of construction (for both above ground and underground) will have been reduced by RM8.82 billion, from RM39.35 billion to RM30.53 billion.

(The Star, NST, The Sun & The Edge, 27/10/2018)


MAXIS EXTENDS EXISTING HOME FIBRE NETWORK TO PROVIDE SOLUTIONS FOR GAMUDA LAND’S TWENTYFIVE.7

Mobile telecommunication services provider Maxis Bhd and Gamuda Land Sdn Bhd have signed a service agreement to provide network infrastructure and services to the twentyfive.7 Township in Kota Kemuning, which has a gross development value (GDV) of RM4.2 billion. Under the agreement, each of the 279 landed homes in Phase 1A and 1B, and 596 serviced apartment units of The Amber Residence will be equipped with a customised MaxisONE Home fibre plan with speeds of up to 300Mbps. Courtesy of Gamuda Land, the customised plan will come with unlimited iFlix access at home and on mobile, unlimited free domestic calls to all mobile and landlines and a DECT phone, all of which will be free for residents for two years from the time it is activated. Gamuda Land also will also deploy these services at Gamuda Cove near Cyberjaya and Gamuda Gardens in Rawang.

(The Edge & NST, 01/11/2018)


 

VERTICE SECURES RM25 MILLION MODIFICATION JOB FOR GENTING’S ARENA OF STARS

Vertice Bhd’s unit has secured a sub-contract job worth RM25 million, involving modification works at the musical amphitheatre, “Arena of Stars”, in Genting Highlands, Pahang. The subcontract, comprising roof covering and acoustic works at the theatre, will be undertaken from November 1, 2018 to April 21, 2019.

(The Edge & NST, 01/11/2018)


 

IOI PROPERTIES TO LAUNCH RM3 BILLION WORTH OF PROJECTS IN FY19

IOI Properties Group Bhd will launch projects worth a total gross development value (GDV) of RM3 billion during its current financial year ending June 30, 2019 (FY19), which is higher than the FY18 GDV of RM2.8 billion. The optimism is mostly premised on the strong demand for its projects in China and Singapore.

(The Edge, 01/11/2018)


BANK NEGARA COMMISSIONS ‘REVIEW’ ON PURCHASE OF LOT 41

Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM), which is yet to close the chapter on a RM2.066 billion land purchase in January 2018. The central bank initiated a review (currently ongoing) by an independent party in relation to the acquisition of the tract, Lot 41, which is adjacent to its Sasana Kijang complex as it is believed BNM overpaid the Ministry of Finance for the tract. The unit price of the land worked out to be RM823 per sq. ft. based on an area of 67.41 acres.

(The Edge, 01/11/2018)


 

 

CPI LAND TO OFFER TOWWNHOUSES FOR SERINTIN PHASE 2

In 1Q19, CPI Land Sdn Bhd will be launching the second phase of its first township project, Serintin in Mantin, Negeri Sembilan, pending relevant approvals from the authorities. The 26 acre project has a gross development value of RM160 million and was first launched in 2016. The first phase comprises 137 double storey terraced houses (configuration of 20’ x 65’, priced at RM420,000 and was 90% sold), two and a half storey homes and three storey shop lots. The entirety of the first phase was completed in June 2018. While initial plans were double storey houses, phase two is now expected to comprise 190 two-storey townhouses in three differing land sizes (20’ x 70’, 20’ x 75’ and 20’ x 80’). The selling price per unit for the second phase ranges between RM220,000 and RM250,000.

(The Edge Property, 02/11/2018)


 

ECOFIRST HOPES THERE WON’T BE MORE TAXES

Ecofirst Consolidated Bhd is hopeful that the government will not introduce any additional real estate taxes in the 2019 Budget, as the additional tax could weigh heavily on the current sluggish property market. The group believes that continued focus on housing affordability is still essential and hopes the government will allow for provisions that will help Malaysians purchase homes and secure housing loans. The group flagship development, Liberty@Ampang Ukay Phase 1 is 95% sold and is on track to meet its full completion in November 2019. Ecofirst is now working on Phase 2, which is expected to be launched in 3Q19 with three proposed blocks comprising larger-sized units to suit young, growing families.

(NST, 27/10/2018)


 

GIVING BUYERS CHANCES FOR MORE GAINS

Mah Sing Group Bhd has launched its “Desire Refer n Reward” campaign which offers buyers rebates of up to RM38,000, when they refer friends or family to purchase completed residential and commercial properties prior to December 31, 2018. Other perks include easy ownership financing packages (flexible financing schemes with a low deposit) and affordability (ability to adjust the payment of financial schemes to limit down payment). The group provides complimentary renovation consultation appointments with its professional panel of interior designs for selected projects, in addition to furnishing packages and moving-in services. Within the Klang Valley, projects under the campaign include D’sara Sentral, Icon City, Icon Residence, Lakeville Residence, Southville City’s Cerrado, Southville City’s Savanna Executive Suites, Southville City’s Savanna Lifestyle Shops and M Residence 1&2, and Garden Boulevard. Within Penang, projects include Legenda@Southbay Plaza, The Loft@Southbay Plaza, Ferringhi Residence and Ferringhi Residence 2. Lastly in Johor Baru, projects include Meridin Medini 1&2, Meridin Bayvue, Iparc Industrial Park, Sierra Perdana, Austin Suites, Austin V Square, Sri Pulai Perdana and Meridin East.

(The Star, 01/11/2018)


 

HARVEY NORMAN SEES HIGHER SALES

Harvey Norman Malaysia (HNM) expects sales growth to be in excess of 12% during 2018 and plans to open 60 stores nationwide in the next 5 to 10 years. In 2019, HNM will open six additional stores in Ipoh, Miri, Kota Baru and three more in Johor. HNM had launched its Mid Valley Superstore (approximately 38,500 sq. ft.) on October 27, 2018, and with the opening of the outlet, the Australia based home solution company, now has 23 stores in Malaysia.

(NST, 29/10/2018)


KAMDAR CLOSES TWO OUTLETS IN THE KLANG VALLEY

Kamdar Group Bhd has closed two retail outlets at Mid Valley Megamall in Kuala Lumpur and SS2 in Petaling Jaya, as the tenancies for the rented premises have expired.

(The Sun, The Edge, The Star & NST, 01/11/2018)


 

MAHB TO REVAMP AIRPORT RETAIL

Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) will revamp retail space in five of its international airports to sustain competitiveness and transform them from being a mere transportation hub, to doubling up as a shopping destination. This plan includes the KL International Airport (KLIA), KLIA2, Langkawi International Airport, Kuching International Airport and Kota Kinabalu International Airport. MAHB will be dividing the retail areas into retail magnets led by duty free, food and beverage and high fashion components. In the next three to five years, MAHB will roll out the “Reset” plan for retail components in order to position these airports as “international shop fronts”. With the “Reset” strategy, MAHB aims to increase its non-aero-based revenue to 60% from the current 50% and intends on growing its retail sales of RM35 per pax, by at least four times in the next five years.

(The Star & The Edge, 30/10/2018)


 

REGION’S FIRST SMART ‘CASH FREE’ CONVENIENCE STORE OPENS IN IPOH

In what is seen as the first of its kind in Southeast Asia, a smart convenience store which accepts only cashless transactions opened its doors to the public in Ipoh. Called the ‘Twenty4’ smart department store located in Ipoh Parade shopping mall, sells various local and international products using high-tech self-service machines. The shop is open at all times, whereby customers can purchase a variety of items including food and personal care items via cashless transactions. Customers can purchase products at the store using debit cards, credit cards, Paywaves, Samsung Pay, Apple Pay or other forms of E-Wallet payments.

(The Edge, 31/10/2018)


 

CARING PHARMACY TO ADD NEW STORES IN SECOND-TIER CITIES

Having crossed the half-billion ringgit mark in sales in the last fiscal year, Caring Pharmacy Group Bhd plans to spend RM6 million to RM8 million in 2018 to add 12 to 15 outlets to its portfolio, mainly within second-tier cities outside the Klang Valley. Since the group’s presence is strong in the Klang Valley and Johor Bahru, the group will add outlets in Kota Kinabalu in Sabah, Kota Bharu in Kelantan and Kuantan in Pahang. In FY18, the group opened nine new pharmacies in Kedah, Perlis, Terengganu and Sarawak.

(The Edge Financial, 31/10/2018)


 

TESCO IS PLANNING PROPERTY VENTURE

UK-based retailer Tesco Stores (M) Sdn Bhd, plans to venture into property development. It will involve the redevelopment of one of its larger stores, Tesco Extra Ampang, which could signal the first wave of executing several similar projects. Tesco intends on maximising the value of the land it owns and is seeking a property developer to partner and jointly develop the site, which is large enough (13 acres) to allow the existing store to operate while development is taking place around it. The location is suitable for affordable homes, which is the sort of property required by home buyers.

(The Edge, 27/10/2018)


 

SUNWAY TIES UP WITH MKH TO DEVELOP RM540 MILLION PROJECT

Sunway Bhd has entered into a joint venture agreement with MKH Bhd to develop a transit-oriented mixed development project worth RM540 million in Kajang, Selangor. The project will be located on a 5.28 acre site, which is expected to be launched in 4Q19 and completed within four years. Sunway will hold a 60% equity stake in the joint venture firm, whereas MKH will hold the remaining 40%. The development will comprise commercial lots and residential units, which will include affordable units.

(The Star, 27/10/2018)


 

CHINESE FIRM TO BUILD RM8 BILLION RESORT OFF LABUAN’S KURAMAN ISLAND

A Chinese investor will spend RM8 billion to develop an international island resort and marina destination off Kuraman Island, generating 10,000 jobs. construction of the mammoth 363 acre multi-hotel, residential and commercial project could begin in 1Q19. The 10-year master plan commencing in 2019 is expected to provide multiplier effects in the region of RM1 billion for Labuan with at least 800,000 tourist arrivals per year.

The project comprises 16 three to six star resort hotels, a tourism town enclave, condominiums and apartments, international marinas, a wellness centre, a water world theme park and sea water lagoon and a signature seafood restaurant. There will be three more man-made islands namely Kuraman 2, 3 and 4 to be built in stages in the periphery of the existing Kuraman Island and these will be fully completed in 2029. A detailed Development Order application will be submitted to Labuan Corporation, a local authority under the Ministry of Federal Territories, whereas all technical compliances are to be met after the approval of the Land Application by Labuan Corporation.

(NST & The Edge Financial, 02/11/2018)


 

ECM LIBRA’S ORMOND GROUP TO OWN, OPERATE AND/OR MANAGE HOTEL VENTURE

ECM Libra has identified three guest accommodation models that will contribute to its growth. To be placed under the soon-to-be-set-up Ormond Group Sdn Bhd, this wholly-owned unit of ECM Libra will own, operate and/or manage “three distinct models”, which will be the pillars of the hospitality group (includes Ormond Hotels, Tune Hotels and SubHome). Ormond Group already owns four of the 14 Tune-branded hotels and by the end of 2020 this figure will expand to 15 hotels with 3,000 rooms. ECM has thus far acquired Tune Hotel 1Borneo in Kota Kinabalu, Tune Hotel George Town in Penang, and the rights to operate and manage Tune Hotel KLIA Aeropolis for an estimated RM30.93 million via cash and a share swap. It has also bought into TP Hotel (Flinders) Trust, which owns a two-storey building in Melbourne, and 50% of Tune Hotel klia2. According to reports, Tune Plato Ventures Sdn Bhd (a joint venture between Tune Group Sdn Bhd and ECM Libra) had acquired a 50% stake in SubHome Management Sdn Bhd, which is growing exponentially and targets to provide 3,000 units in Malaysia by end-2018, from the current 450 units.

(The Edge, 27/10/2018)


RAMSAY SIME DARBY EYES PORTFOLIO EXPANSION

Ramsay Sime Darby Health Care Sdn Bhd (RSDH), the 50% joint venture company of Sime Darby Bhd, is eyeing strong expansion in Malaysia and the wider region. The company now owns and operates three hospitals each in Malaysia and Indonesia respectively, and has the support of its shareholders and a debt facility to facilitate both organic and inorganic expansion. In Malaysia, RSDH owns and operates the Subang Jaya Medical Centre (395 beds), Ara Damansara Medical Centre (80 beds) and ParkCity Medical Centre (140 beds). While in Indonesia, the company owns and operates RS Premier Bintaro and RS Premier Jatinegara in Jakarta and RS Premier Surabaya in Surabaya.

(The Star, 27/10/2018)


 

MEXTER TO BUILD RM558.53 MILLION WELLNESS VALLEY IN PAHANG

Mexter Technology Bhd, which is involved in the healthcare services industry, proposes to make the sector one of its core businesses following plans to develop the LYC Wellness Valley in Genting Sempah, Pahang, with an estimated gross development value of RM558.53 million. The group also proposes a name change to LYC Healthcare Bhd. Mexter’s 70%-owned subsidiary LYC Living Sdn Bhd, entered into a conditional consultancy and project management agreement with LYC Venture Sdn Bhd to develop 10 acres of land into a medical, healthcare related and wellness community known as LYC Wellness Valley. The development is estimated to commence in 2019 and is to be completed by 2025.

(The Sun & The Edge, 31/10/2018)


 

MBI SPORTS COMPLEX TO OPEN TO PUBLIC ON NOVEMBER 1, 2018

Four venues at the Ipoh City Council (MBI) Sports Complex including the Tuanku Zara Aquatic Centre and the badminton, squash and tennis arenas, will be open to the public on November 1, 2018. The aquatic centre has an adult pool and two pools for children with entrance fees ranging from RM2 to RM10. The booking fees for badminton, squash and tennis courts range from RM6 to RM25 per hour.

(The Edge, 01/11/2018)


 

INHERITANCE TAX MAY FURTHER DAMPEN PROPERTY MARKET

It is inappropriate to introduce inheritance tax now despite the need for the government to widen its tax base to raise revenue, as its implementation will further dampen the property market. The Association of Valuers, Property Managers, Estate Agents and Property Consultants in the Private Sector Malaysia (PEPS) expressed that if inheritance tax was to be recommended in the 2019 Budget, the minimum threshold should be RM10 million, whereby the inheritance rate should be imposed at 5% for RM10 million and above. It is understood that the government was toiling with the idea of imposing taxes such as inheritance tax and real property gains tax. This is to tide over the shortfall of revenue from the withdrawal of the goods and services tax and the subsequent introduction of the sales and services tax, and to diminish the government’s debts and liabilities. As for the real property gains tax, PEPS denoted that although there was no evidence of concrete speculation, the market has shifted towards a subdued state in the last two years. Hence, PEPS recommends that the current real property tax structure (last revised in 2015) should be maintained until the property market stabilises.

(The Star, 30/10/2018)


 

 

 

CONSIDERATION TO ALLOW RESALE OF AFFORDABLE HOUSES TO FIRST-TIME BUYERS

The government will look into the proposal for the resale of affordable houses to be open to only those who are purchasing a house for the first time. This is one of the Housing and Local Governments’ objectives to ensure that those who have yet to own a house will be given priority.

(The Edge, 01/11/2018)


REHDA: PROPERTIES IN NEW LAUNCHES TO BE AT LEAST 5% CHEAPER

Following numerous calls for lower property prices, the Real Estate and Housing Developers’ Association Malaysia has stated that house buyers may now expect prices to contract between 5% and 10% for new launches. This is partly attributable to the 2.5% to 5% of savings experienced by developers after the exemption of the sales and services tax (SST) on basic construction materials and all construction services. Many developers are also offering discounts and rebates due to the soft market for new launches and home buyers are expected to pay lower prices, depending on the location and type of product offered.

However, the quantum of savings for developers will be contingent on the type of developments and will only be applicable to new projects, as prices for those projects during the goods and services tax (GST) era would have been agreed upon with the contractor. Under the GST regime, residential property developers were unable to claim input tax credit and had to absorb the cost increase. However, with the abolishment of GST and the SST waiver, developers should expect to experience certain savings in development costs. Rehda is encouraging all developers to pass on these savings back to purchasers in the form of price reductions.

(The Sun, NST, The Edge & The Star, 30/10/2018)


 

CHINESE NATIONALS OWN MOST HOUSES UNDER MM2H PROGRAMME

A total of 4,499 applications to purchase homes under Malaysia My Second Home Programme (MM2H) have been approved for foreign nationals since 2007. The Malaysian Deputy Housing and Local Government Minister expressed that out of the total applications, Chinese citizens owned 1,664 units (37%). This was followed by citizens of the UK with 357 units, Bangladesh (250 units), Iran (217), Japan (208), Pakistan (192), Singapore (175), Australia (147), South Korea (127), United States (115) and “other countries” (1,047).

(The Edge, 02/11/2018)


 

JOHOR TO WOO AIRBUS TO SET UP MRO OPERATIONS IN THE STATE

Johor wants to entice one of the world’s leading aerospace corporations, Airbus, to set-up its commercial planes maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) operations in the state. The relevant Johor authorities will meet Airbus officials in Paris and visit their plant in Toulouse. This is a good opportunity to promote Johor’s MRO operations, whereby Airbus will be able to service their planes in Johor.

(The Star, 31/10/2018)


   

PROMISING OUTLOOK FOR PORTS IN JOHOR

The prospects for port operations in Johor are optimistic in the coming years with progress and development taking place in the southernmost part of the state. Iskandar Malaysia, which is located in southern Johor, is expected to drive economic activities within the economic growth corridor. Iskandar Malaysia will boost the logistics and halal sectors which offer good growth prospects for operators of Johor Port and Port of Tanjung Pelepas (PTP). The Johor Port Authority (JPA) and other stakeholders intend on developing and positioning Johor as one of the leading halal hubs in the region. JPA will sign a memorandum of understanding with Iskandar Halal Park, which is a RM250 million integrated industrial halal park in Pasir Gudang.

(The Star, The Edge & NST, 30/10/2018)


 

THIRD BRIDGE PROPOSAL TO BE DISCUSSED AT JMC MEETING BY DECEMBER 2018

By December 2018, the proposal to build a third bridge linking Johor to Singapore will be discussed by the Johor government in the Malaysia-Singapore Joint Ministerial Committee (JMC) Meeting in Singapore. The proposal to build a bridge from Sungai Rengit, Pengerang in the Kota Tinggi district, to Pulau Ubin in Singapore was submitted at the end of August 2018. This is to reduce traffic congestion at the Johor Causeway and the Malaysia-Singapore Second Link and is line with Pengerang’s current rapid development.

(The Edge, 01/11/2018)


 

GOVERNMENT CAN’T STOP FOREIGN OWNERSHIP IN FOREST CITY

The Pakatan Harapan government has no power to stop the sale of property under the Forest City project in Johor to foreign buyers, according to the Deputy Housing and Local Government Ministry. This is because the multi-billion project comes under the Johor government and is located within the international zone in Gelang Patah (hence, there are no restrictions on foreign ownership).

(The Star, 02/11/2018)


 

MORE INFO NEEDED FROM 250,000 RIBJ APPLICANTS

Approximately 250,000 people who applied for the Rumah Impian Bangsa Johor (RIBJ) affordable housing project in 2017, will now need to submit their applications online once again with additional details. The response for the two projects in Bandar Dato Onn (488 homes to be completed in 2020) and Bandar Baru Majidee (320 homes that will be ready by the end of 2019)

has been overwhelming with circa 350,000 people applying for homes when it was launched in 2017. After vetting through the applications, at least two-thirds of the initial applicants will need to go online and provide additional information, particularly with regards to their salaries and debts. This process is now open until November 7, 2018 with hopes to announce potential buyers by November 21, 2018. RIBJ is priced between RM85,000 and RM100,000.

(The Star & NST, 01/11/2018)


 

FOREST CITY AIMS FOR “INDUSTRY-INTEGRATED CITY” STATUS BY 2020

The developer of the Forest City project in Johor is set to realise the idea of having an “industry-integrated city” and mixed-use development on four man-made islands over the next two years. The group’s main focus is to set up industries and further enhance tourism components as it continues to launch residential units based on the demand and supply status of the property market. The developer will build up the “industrial” component as part of the Industry Integration Blueprint 2020. The company has so far reclaimed 50% of Island One, which is utilised for retail space, the Endorra Sales Gallery, a five-star hotel and commercial units. The three remaining reclaimed islands will be built on the basis of demand and supply. On the mainland, Country Garden Pacific View (CGPV) has developed the Forest City Golf Resort and a five-star hotel. CGPV also continues to work closely with the Johor and federal governments to build affordable housing for Malaysians, which is part of Forest City’s long-term plan for sustainability. CGPV had sold 90% of its residential units as at the end of 2017 despite various challenges, including capital control measures by the Chinese government. The company launched approximately 20,000 residential units for sale by the end of 2017 and started “handing over the keys”: for 480 residential apartment units on September 1, 2018.

(The Malaysian Reserve, 29/10/2018)


 

KIMLUN SECURES RM164 MILLION BUILDING JOB IN MEDINI ISKANDAR

Kimlun Corp Bhd has secured a RM164 million contract from Sunway Iskandar Sdn Bhd to build a commercial and an apartment block in Medini Iskandar, an urban township in Johor with mixed components of residential, commercial, public facilities, infrastructure, and green areas. Kimlun’s wholly owned subsidiary, Kimlun Sdn Bhd, is expected to complete the buildings by the end of June 2021.

(The Edge, The Star & The Sun, 31/10/2018)


 

MUAR FURNITURE PARK TARGETS RM1.06 BILLION REVENUE IN 2023

The Muar Furniture Park (MFP) is expected to bring-in revenue in excess of RM1.06 billion once it is fully operational in 2023. The industrial park is being developed on 987 acres of land in Bakri in Muar, Johor, and is capable of housing between 180 and 220 companies. Currently, 112 Muar-based manufacturing companies have secured spots at the industrial park, 35 of which have received assistance worth RM70 million from the government.

(The Malaysian Reserve, 01/11/2018)


 

TMC LIFE AWARDS RM48.7 MILLION PILING JOB TO PUTRA PERDANA

TMC Life Sciences Bhd has awarded a RM48.7 million contract to Putra Perdana Construction Sdn Bhd to undertake piling works for the construction of the 33-storey Thomson Iskandar Medical Hub in Johor Baru. TMC’s wholly owned subsidiary, BB Waterfront Sdn Bhd, has awarded the 40-week contract to Putra Perdana, with completion expected by September 2, 2019.

(NST, 01/11/2018)


 

POSITIVE GROWTH IN PENANG TO CONTINUE

Penang is expected to outperform the national growth average for the third consecutive year as the manufacturing and services sectors continue to remain robust in 2018. The state is poised to register a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth of between 5.2% and 5.3% for 2018, whereas average growth for the national GDP is expected to be around 4.5% to 4.8%. Penang will also invest in the future by setting aside resources and funding for the development of its human capital.

(The Sun, 30/10/2018)


 

TROPICANA DIVESTS 55% STAKE IN TROPICANA IVORY FOR RM70.7 MILLION

Tropicana Corp Bhd’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Tropicana Development (Penang) Sdn Bhd (TDP), is disposing of its 55% stake in Tropicana Ivory Sdn Bhd (TISB) to Hemat Tuah Sdn Bhd, for RM70.7 million. Upon completion of the disposal, TDP will no longer hold any equity interest in TISB. TISB is a joint venture between Tropicana Corp (via TDP) and Ivory Properties Group Bhd (via Ivory Utilities Sdn Bhd) and is principally engaged in property development activities. The proposed disposal will enable Tropicana to realise the gains from its investment in TISB, and to conserve cashflow requirements of TISB in order to focus on other developments.

(The Edge, 27/10/2018)


AFFORDABLE HOUSING SCHEMES TO BE MONITORED FOR PROMPT DELIVERY

Timely delivery of affordable housing schemes in the state will be given close attention by the Penang government. All the projects, whether built by the private sector, state or federal governments, should be promptly completed, according to the State Housing, Town, Country Planning and Local Government Committee. Built by state investment arm Penang Development Corporation (PDC), Jiran Residensi comprises 353 low medium-cost (LMC) units and 354 affordable housing units located in Kampung Jawa in Butterworth, Penang. With a built-up of 700 sq. ft., each LMC is capped at a price of RM72,500. The affordable units are offered in sizes of 850 sq. ft. and 1,000 sq. ft., with prices ranging between RM200,000 and RM250,000. The project is close to completion and the Certificate of Completion and Compliance will be ready by June 2019. The state has built a total of 28,195 low-cost, LMC and affordable homes since 2008 and 22,065 units are currently under construction. Meanwhile, a total of 32,212 units by both the public and private sectors have received approval for development.

(The Edge, 29/10/2018)


UMW TOYOTA’S TWO PENANG OUTLETS TRANSFERRED TO A FOREIGN PARTNER

From November 1, 2018, two of UMW Toyota Motor Sdn Bhd’s own outlets in Penang have been transferred to a foreign partner. This follows the company’s announcement in October 2017 that it would be transferring the majority of retail operations of its branch to its dealers and other relevant parties. The foreign partner is Netz Toyota Tama Co Ltd, which has been associated with Toyota in Japan for almost 60 years. Resulting from this partnership, UMW Toyota ascertained that Netz Toyota’s locally-incorporated arm S&D Tama Malaysia will be officially taking over operations of UMW Toyota’s existing branches in Prai and Penang in the northern region of Peninsular Malaysia. The two 3S outlets are located on Jalan Jelutong on Penang Island and at the Prai Industrial Estate on the mainland.

(NST, 02/11/2018)


ATRIUM REIT PLANS RM180 MILLION PURCHASE OF TWO LEASEBACK DEALS IN PENANG

Atrium Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) plans to buy and leaseback two pieces of land in Penang from Lumileds Malaysia Sdn Bhd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Lumileds International BV, for an aggregate of RM180 million cash. The proposed acquisitions represent a good opportunity for the trust to expand its existing portfolio of investment properties. The first transaction involves the acquisition and leaseback of 7.62 acres of leasehold land in Bayan Lepas FIZ Phase 3 (along with the factory and all buildings erected on the site), from Lumileds for RM50 million. The other transaction involves the acquisition of 11.82 acres of leasehold land and a leaseback at Kawasan Perindustrian Bayan Lepas Fasa 4 for RM130 million. Lumileds previously signed a lease arrangement with landowner Penang Development Corporation on February 11, 2011, to lease the property for a period of 30 years, expiring on February 10, 2041.

(The Edge & The Star, 02/11/2018)


SARAWAK TO INVEST RM2 BILLION IN DIGITAL ECONOMY

The Sarawak government will invest RM2 billion to develop the state’s digital economy. The state has recently launched its digital economy strategy, including plans to develop the digital economy up to 2022 and has set up the Sarawak Multimedia Authority, Sarawak Digital Economy Corp and Sarawak Development Bank to spearhead digital economy initiatives.

(The Star, 02/11/2018)


SARAWAK CONSOLIDATED EYES FOR MORE GOVERNMENT IBS PROJECTS

Sarawak Consolidated Industries Bhd (SCIB) has secured two major contracts worth approximately RM10 million for the supply of industrialised building system (IBS) products for two government projects namely the Sarawak General Hospital (SGH) redevelopment project and the Sungai Tapang school’s extension. The RM351 million SGH redevelopment project, which is expected to be ready by early 2021, involves the construction of a 160-room medi-hotel, a multi-storey car park (1,789 parking bays), a helipad and a three-storey day-care centre to house 60 beds, seven operating theatres and surgery care facilities. SCIB had recently completed the supply of IBS components worth approximately RM4 million, for reconstruction and extension projects of 15 dilapidated schools. Earlier this year, the Federal Finance Ministry approved RM1 billion for the reconstruction of 400 dilapidated schools in Sarawak using IBS products, whereby most of them were located in rural areas.

(The Star, 29/10/2018)


RICS

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Jones Lang Wootton