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MALAYSIA’S ECONOMY TO GROW 4.9%

Malaysia’s economic growth forecast remains at 4.9% y-o-y for 2019 given the upbeat performance of domestic and external trade sectors. The domestic economy continues to be resilient as Bank Negara is expected to maintain the overnight policy rate at 3.25% in 2019, amid a 2.2% inflation forecast. Furthermore, a continuous current account surplus could strengthen the ringgit to US dollar/RM 4.00 level by the end of 2019.

(NST, 21/03/2019)


ECER ON TRACK TO SUSTAIN EQUITABLE, INCLUSIVE GROWTH

The Malaysian Government, through the East Coast Economic Region Development Council (ECERDC), has reaffirmed its commitment to the various projects and programmes in the East Coast Economic Region (ECER) to sustain socio-economic growth and uplift the wellbeing of the people. Between 2019 and 2020, ECERDC was targeting to attract an additional RM17 billion and realise RM15 billion in private investment, creating 31,000 job opportunities.

(The Star, 18/03/2019)


INVESTKL HOPES TO ATTRACT 13 MNCS IN 2019

InvestKL, which attracted 12 multinational companies (MNCs) in 2018 with approved and committed investments of RM2.3 billion, aims to attract 13 MNCs from the US, Europe, China, Japan and South Korea in 2019. These countries are strong in the six sectors that the investment promotion agency is pursuing and these are smart technologies, consumer technologies, e-commerce, medical devices, industrial automation and energy and renewable. To date, InvestKL has attracted 78 MNCs with approved and committed investments of RM11.7 billion, and the creation of 11,693 regional high-skilled jobs since 2011.

(The Sun, The Edge Financial, NST & The Star, 19/03/2019)


SELANGOR TARGETS RM10 BILLION IN MANUFACTURING INVESTMENTS FOR 2019

Selangor is targeting to secure RM10 billion worth of approved investments in the manufacturing sector, after seeing a record RM18.95 billion in 2018 contributed by higher foreign direct investment and domestic direct investment. A total of 241 manufacturing projects were approved in the state in 2018, 19% higher than the 202 recorded in 2017. New investments increased 427% to RM13.5 billion in 2018, while expansion / diversification investments increased 79% y-o-y to RM5.42 billion.

(The Edge Financial & The Sun, 21/03/2019)


ALL GOVERNMENT AFFORDABLE HOUSING TO BE BUILT WITH IBS

According to the Ministry of Housing and Local Government, all government affordable housing projects will be built using the industrialised building system (IBS) technology by 2024 as the method is cheaper, faster and it will reduce the government’s dependence on foreign workers. The technology also assists the government to meet their target to build a million affordable homes in the next 10 years and it will also ensure the construction of quality homes.

(The Edge Property, 16/03/2019 & The Sun, 18/03/2019)


TWO SELANGOR DISTRICT COUNCILS TO BE UPGRADED TO MUNICIPALITIES

The Kuala Langat and Kuala Selangor District Councils will be upgraded to municipal councils by 2019. The Selangor State Government hopes the Kuala Langat District Council (MDKL) employees will strive to increase service levels and the income for the local authority once it is recognised as a municipality.

(The Edge Property, 18/03/2019)


RAMADAN BAZAAR AT LORONG TAR, JALAN MASJID INDIA TO BE RELOCATED TO JALAN RAJA

The Ramadan bazaar situated at Lorong Tuanku Abdul Rahman (TAR) and Jalan Masjid India, Kuala Lumpur will be relocated to Jalan Raja, facing the Sultan Abdul Samad Building. The bazaar will be along a 200 metre stretch from the Jalan Gereja traffic light junction until the Leboh Pasar Besar junction. In additional, the Lorong TAR night market will not be relocated at the moment, as discussions with stakeholders are still ongoing.

(The Edge Property, 19/03/2019)


HIGHLAND TOWERS LAND TO BE REDEVELOPED

The Highland Towers land will be redeveloped after the court resolves the remaining cases involving 10 property owners. In the long run, the developer plans to develop a recreational park and 50 bungalows around it as it is not a high-risk development, and the park will benefit the area’s residents.

(The Edge Property, 19/03/2019; NST & The Sun, 20/03/2019)


MRCB STEPPING UP THE GAME WITH ITS BUILDING SYSTEM

Malaysian Resources Corp Bhd (MRCB) is eyeing to introduce the country’s first volumetric building system by the end of 2019. MRCB’s building system (MBS) is a combination of prefabricated prefinished volumetric constructions and a jointing system known as the candle-loc. MBS is a step up from the current industrialised building system (IBS) used by the industry for precast buildings which would reduce project delivery time by 30% compared to conventional construction methods as fabrication of building components are done off-site which is then assembled into fully finished and completed 3D modules that begin prefabrications concurrently with works on-site.

(The Edge Property, 19/03/2019 & The Star, 20/03/2019)


MOVE FOR INTERNET ACCESS FOR NEW HOUSING PROJECTS

The Ministry of Communications and Multimedia hopes to implement soon the decision requiring developers of new housing and industrial projects to provide Internet access. The implementation of the policy will do away with the high cost of Internet infrastructure and installation paid by purchasers and/or occupiers.

(The Edge Financial & The Sun, 20/03/2019)


PERAK GOVERNMENT TO CONTINUE PUSHING FOR FOREST REPLANTING PROJECT

The Perak State Government will continue to push for the 988 acre forest replanting project despite land-clearing issues. The government has approved a permit for the replanting efforts at forest reserves in Kledang Saiong near Batu Gajah, Bukit Kinta in Gopeng and Piah near Gerik. The project to replant the trees at these forest reserves, deemed as unproductive forests where illegal logging had taken place.

(The Star, 20/03/2019)


7 PROJECTS WORTH OVER RM3 BILLION FOR KEDAH

The Federal Government had announced seven projects costing over RM3 billion for Kedah to build developments in the state so it becomes on par with more progressive states. The projects are the Kulim International Airport; a manufacturing industries and logistics hub in Sidam near Kulim; two phases of the Northern Corridor highway project over a 70-km stretch; a digital library in Alor Setar; a petrochemical industrial park in Gurun and the Kasih Ibu Darul Aman programme. As for the two phases of the Northern Corridor Highway, the first phase is the stretch from Bandar Baharu (Kulim) to Sungai Petani and the second phase from Bandar Baharu to the Sultan Abdul Halim Bridge in Penang.

(NST & The Star, 20/03/2019)


ALL CITY STATUS LOCAL AUTHORITIES TO USE BIM ESUBMISSION BY 2021

By 2021, all 20 local authorities with city status in Malaysia will be using the Building Information Modelling (BIM) technology in their initial project submission stage. The Malaysian Government is targeting to run four pilot projects with the collaboration of the Putrajaya Corporation, Petaling Jaya City Council, Melaka Historical City Council and the Kangar Municipal Council on the BIM eSubmission (a Uniform Building By-Laws auto-checker for building plans).

(The Edge Property, 20/03/2019)


BOOST FOR IBS CONSTRUCTION METHOD

LBS Bina Group Bhd will be able to build up to 4,000 affordable properties a year following the commissioning of its RM40 million industrialised building system (IBS) precast concrete plant in Nilai. Located on a 6.99 acre plot, the plant will produce and sell a range of IBS components, including precast concrete and wall panels, slabs, columns and beams.

(The Star, 21/03/2019)


GROUP ENTERTAINMENT OUTLETS IN ONE PLACE

The Melaka State Government has no plans to allow new entertainment outlets to operate in other areas except at Taman Melaka Raya in Banda Hilir to facilitate investment and enforcement efforts. For existing entertainment outlet operators who wish to shift their business operations, the government has agreed to adopt the existing policy in which application for licences for entertainment outlets can only be made for the Taman Melaka Raya area. The new licences to be issued for new entertainment outlets in other areas such as Kota Laksamana, Malim Jaya and Jasin Bestari will conditionally be given to hotels located outside Taman Melaka Raya.

(The Star, 21/03/2019)


20 CENTRES NATIONWIDE TO DRIVE COMMUNITY BUILDING EFFORT

In 2019, the Ministry of Housing and Local Government aims to set up Community Consensus Secretariats in 20 People’s Housing Projects (PPR) handled by the ministry nationwide, which are set to be the main movers under the National Community Policy. The secretariats will co-ordinate programmes and activities between the PPR residents and the public and private agencies focusing on: infrastructure and maintenance; cleanliness, environment and health; security; education and skills.

(The Edge Property, 21/03/2019)


NEW BY-LAWS WILL BE ENACTED TO CURB MISUSE OF RUMAH SELANGORKU

The Selangor State Government is drawing up new by-laws to curb the misuse of Rumah Selangorku affordable housing units. In the interim, the government has instructed Rumah Selangorku developers and the joint management bodies to take action based on the Strata Management (Maintenance and Management) Regulations 2015, which allow them to “restrict access cards to the owners and residents of Rumah Selangorku.

(The Edge Property, 21/03/2019 & The Sun, 22/03/2019)


YFG SECURES RM34 MILLION SUBCONTRACT WORKS FOR LRT3

YFG Bhd’s wholly owned unit YFG Engineering Sdn Bhd has secured a RM33.86 million subcontract from Dynasynergy M&E Engineering Sdn Bhd to provide electrical works for the Light Rail Transit Line 3 (LRT3) project. Slated for completion within 14 months, the project involves the supply, delivery, installation, commission and maintenance of electrical works in the Section 14 and UiTM stations in Shah Alam, along with street lighting and traffic light system.

(The Sun, 19/03/2019)


ECONPILE SECURES RM44 MILLION MRT STATION JOB

Econpile Holdings Bhd has secured a RM44.7 million contract from MMC Gamuda KVMRT (UGW) joint venture to design and build the reinforced concrete box tunnel works for the Hospital Kuala Lumpur Station under the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) Sungai Buloh-Serdang-Putrajaya (SSP) Line (MRT 2). The overall duration of the contract is approximately 25 months.

(The Sun, 21/03/2019)


TWO NEW FLIGHT ROUTES

On March 31, 2019, Malindo Air will launch its new Langkawi – Phuket route that will be operated three times a week. Malaysia Airlines is also scheduled to begin its Kuala Lumpur – Kochi in Kerala, India route on March 31, 2019.

(The Star, 19/03/2019)


LOW-COST CARRIER TO BEGIN MELAKA-PENANG ROUTE IN JULY 2019

AirAsia will be the latest carrier to operate from the Melaka International Airport (LTAM) at Batu Berendam Melaka to Penang from July 1, 2019. Currently Malindo Air services four routes, namely routes to Penang, Langkawi, Kota Baru and Pekanbaru, Indonesia from LTAM.

(The Star, 21/03/2019)


MATRIX CONCEPT EXPECTS MALAYSIAN VISION VALLEY TO BOOST HOME DEMAND

Matrix Concepts Holdings Bhd has set aside 70% of its new launches for affordable homes over the next two years and is anticipating the 379,087 acre Malaysia Vision Valley 2.0 (MVV 2.0) mega project to further boost demand for houses in the area. Matrix also takes comfort from the fact that its landbank is located in the MVV 2.0. Matrix recently acquired another 200 acres in Bandar Sri Sendayan, Seremban and expects the transaction to be completed by May 2019.

(The Edge Financial, 18/03/2019)


TM TO SELL MORE BUILDINGS

Telekom Malaysia Bhd (TM) plans to sell more buildings and landbanks around the country including in Hong Kong to unlock the value of its assets after putting two buildings up for sale recently. In February 2019, a tender bid was called for two buildings (Annexe 1 and Annexe 2) at its headquarters in Kuala Lumpur with a reserve price range said to be between RM273 million and RM312 million.

(The Star & NST, 18/03/2019)


ASSET TRANSFER HELPED TABUNG HAJI ACCOUNTS

The move to transfer under-performing assets from Tabung Haji to a special purpose vehicle has helped to restore the pilgrim fund’s balance sheet. The assets were transferred to Urusharta Jamaah Sdn Bhd (a company wholly-owned by the Ministry of Finance) comprising 29 real estate assets, an unlisted company and 106 domestic security assets, collectively valued at RM19.9 billion.

(The Sun, 19/03/2019)


SCIENTEX 2Q19 NET PROFIT UP 8.5% ON MANUFACTURING, PROPERTY REVENUE

Scientex Bhd’s net profit in 2Q19 grew 8.5% to RM73.75 million from RM67.98 million in 2Q18, on higher revenue from better sales performance achieved from both the manufacturing and property divisions. For the property segment, Scientex has recently acquired 208.9 acres of land in Melaka to expand its affordable housing footprint, while continuing to work on its newly-launched 65.3 acre Rawang development. The company plans to build 50,000 affordable homes by 2028.

(The Edge Financial, 20/03/2019)


MAH SING ALLOCATES RM28 MILLION FOR DIGITALISATION INITIATIVE

Mah Sing Group Bhd has allocated RM28 million for its digitalisation transformation programme. The group has embraced digital initiatives from sales and marketing, construction management and quality assurance, customer experience and engagement, to property management. Over the medium to long term, the group is looking at data analytics so the company can study their prospective buyers’ behaviour.

(The Edge Financial, The Star & NST, 20/03/2019)


SUNCON SECURES TWO PILING JOBS WORTH RM86 MILLION

Sunway Construction Group Bhd (SunCon) has secured two piling works contracts worth a combined value of RM86.43 million. The first contract was related to the Light Rail Transit 3 (LRT3) and was secured by Sunway Geotechnics (M) Sdn Bhd (SunGeo) from S.N. Akmida Holdings Sdn Bhd for a contract sum of RM47.65 million. The LRT3 piling project is slated to commence on March 25, 2019 and is expected to be completed on March 24, 2020. The second contract was secured by Sunway Construction Sdn Bhd from Putrajaya Development Sdn Bhd for a piling job related to a proposed transit-oriented development at Plot 7MD7 at Precinct 7, Putrajaya, for RM38.79 million. The Putrajaya piling project is slated to commence on March 25, 2019 and is expected to be completed on July 24, 2020.

(The Edge Financial, 21/03/2019)


UEM SUNRISE EYES RM1.2 BILLION SALES

In 2019, UEM Sunrise Bhd is targeting to achieve RM1.2 billion sales, driven by several new launches and its plan to clear up its property inventory. UEM Sunrise was planning to do small launches consisting of 200 property units in Kepong, Bangi and Gerbang Nusajaya. On its property inventory, circa 60% of the property inventory is attributed to unsold properties in Johor.

(NST & The Star, 21/03/2019)


ELMINA VALLEY FIVE SET TO LAUNCH

Sime Darby Property is ready to unveil “Elmina Valley Five” (the final phase of linked homes in Elmina Valley precinct) on March 23, 2019. The freehold development comprises 373 units of thoughtfully designed double-storey linked homes, with lot sizes of 22’ x 75’ and 22’ x 90’ and a built-up ranging between 2,330 sq. ft. and 3,541 sq. ft. Pricing tentatively starts from RM816,199 after applicable sales rebates and before bumiputra discount.

(The Star, 20/03/2019)


57,710 SELANGORKU HOUSING UNITS APPROVED FOR CONSTRUCTION

The Selangor State Government has approved 57,710 Rumah Selangorku units from 2016 until February 28, 2019. Of these, 888 Rumah Selangorku units have been completed and the keys handed over to their owners; 11,396 units are under construction and the remaining 45,426 units are at the planning stage.

(The Edge Financial, 22/03/2019)


CATALYST FOR REJUVENATION

Set to be launched in September 2019, “Trion@KL” is a mixed development project by Binastra Land, covering four acres of land at the intersection of Jalan Tun Razak and Jalan Duta. The freehold commercial development comprises a total of 1,344 serviced apartments, 38 units of retail lots and 235 hotel rooms. Serviced apartments occupy two 66-storey towers while Tower C will consist of a four-star hotel by “Mercure Kuala Lumpur” and retail shops will occupy the ground and 1st floors of the development. Slated for completion in April 2023, the apartments will have built-up areas ranging between 689 sq. ft. and 1,055 sq. ft. with prices between RM549,900 to RM946,800.

(The Star, 16/03/2019)


AFFORDABLE HOUSING PROJECT ON TRACK FOR EARLY HANDOVER

In keeping with the quick progress of its earlier projects, SkyWorld Development Group is aiming for an early handover of its “SkyAwani 2 Residences” in Sentul by the end of 2019, ahead of its 2020 deadline. Currently, 70% of construction has been completed. SkyAwani 2 Residences spans 2.79 acre and has 1,905 units. Each 800 sq. ft. unit, sold for RM300,000 has three bedrooms and two bathrooms. The developer has already launched three affordable housing projects under SkyAwani and is expected to launch the fourth project (SkyAwani 4 Residences) in 2H19.

(The Star, 18/03/2019)


ANCUBIC CAPITAL BUILDS PANTAI DALAM SERVICED APARTMENTS

Developed by Ancubic Capital Sdn Bhd, the freehold project known as “Cubic Botanical” will comprise 1,161 serviced apartment units and 20 shoplots housed within two 40 storey blocks on a 3 acre site in Pantai Dalam, Kuala Lumpur. The selling price of the serviced apartment units starts from RM600 per sq. ft. and they have four layouts with built up sizes ranging between 518 sq. ft. and 900 sq. ft. As at March 19, 2019, circa 50% of the project has been “booked”.

(The Edge Financial, 22/03/2019)


BEDDING BRAND OPENS AMPANG GALLERY

A Vono mattress gallery has officially opened its doors to customers at Ampang Point, Selangor. The 1,200 sq. ft. gallery features 12 Vono mattress models under its Back Care, SpinePro and ErgoBed series. In 2019, Vono plans to open three more galleries in Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Bintulu, Sarawak.

(The Star, 16/03/2019)


FAST-FOOD CHAIN CHARTS NEW COURSE WITH 47TH OUTLET

A&W Malaysia has opened its 47th outlet in the country at EkoCheras Mall. The new outlet plans to rejuvenate the A&W brand in Malaysia, targeting a new generation of discerning young consumers. Along with the brand rejuvenation, A&W Malaysia’s parent company, Inter Mark Resources Sdn Bhd, has massive expansion plans, including increasing the number of restaurants in the country to 60 by the end of 2019 and 100 by the end of 2021.

(The Star & The Edge Financial, 18/03/2019)


4Q18 RETAIL GROWTH SLOWS TO 2.7%

In 4Q18, retail industry growth rate slowed to 2.7% y-o-y compared with 3.1% recorded in 4Q17. According to the Retail Group Malaysia, the year-end festive period and school holidays failed to boost the growth rate in 2018 and was consistent with the dampened consumer sentiment index as reported by the Malaysian Institute of Economic Research.

(NST, The Star, The Sun & The Edge Financial, 20/03/2019)


HOW GEOGRAPHY AFFECTS SHOPPING HABITS

According to data from Shopee (ecommerce site), Selangor and Kuala Lumpur top the country with the highest number of orders recorded. In the northern region, it reported a rise in online shopping in the states of Perlis, Kedah, Penang and Perak; with circa a third of purchases from these four states coming from the Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) category which includes products such as toiletries. On the east coast, Shopee recorded a triple-digit growth in the number of new users from Kelantan, Pahang and Terengganu, signalling an increased adoption of e-commerce which is likely driven by the growing affordability of smartphones and internet data plans. In the southern region, Johor, Melaka and Negeri Sembilan saw a rise in the number of Shopee users, with the majority of them being men. The Men’s Clothing category is one of the top categories as compared to other states.

(The Sun, 20/03/2019)


KLCC TO TURN PARKSON SPACE INTO SMALL OUTLETS

KLCC Property Holdings Bhd (KLCCP) will turn the 126,000 sq. ft. space previously occupied by Parkson at Surian KLCC into smaller retail and food and beverage (F&B) outlets to generate more rental income. New tenants are slated to commence operations by the end of 2019. KLCCP is optimistically expects the rental revision in 2019 to remain at 1% to 2%, with a third of the tenants renewing their contracts.

(NST, The Edge Financial & The Star, 21/03/2019)


CITY COUNCIL TO VISIT PROPOSED DEVELOPMENT SITE IN PJ

Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) has agreed to visit the site of a controversial proposed mixed development project on 4.720 acre of land on Jalan 16/11. The proposed development located next to “Phileo Damansara 2” comprising a 40-storey serviced condominium with 503 units, 36-storey small office virtual office (SOVO) with 608 units, 34-storey serviced apartments with 404 units and 24-storeys of SOVOs with 112 units, affordable serviced apartments with 220 units, a commercial and car park complex and residents’ facilities.

(The Star, 18/03/2019)


SP SETIA TO LAUNCH SHOP OFFICES IN FIRST PHASE OF SETIA MAYURI

SP Setia Bhd is set to launch the first phase of its 290 acre township, “Setia Mayuri” on March 24, 2019. Located off Jalan Broga in Semenyih, Selangor, the first phase will comprise 32 units of 2 to 3 storey shop offices called “Baris Place@Setia Mayuri” with a gross development value of RM40 million. The intermediate units are 20’ x 80’ with built-ups from 3,200 sq. ft., while the corner lot sizes are 80’ x 80’ with built-ups from 14,000 sq. ft. Prices for the intermediate units at “Baris Place” start from RM1.03 million, while the corner units are going for RM3.87 million, circa 50% of the units have been booked. Meanwhile, Setia Mayuri’s first residential phase will be launched in May 2019 and will comprise 46 semidetached homes and 18 bungalows. Built-ups for the semidetached start from 2,500 sq. ft. onwards, while built-ups for the bungalows start from 3,000 sq. ft. The semidetached have a minimum land size of 4,000 sq. ft. (50’ x 80’) priced from RM800,000 while the bungalows’ are from 54’ x 118’ with prices expected to start from RM1.3 million onwards. In total, the freehold township will comprise merely 136 bungalows and 318 semidetached with individual title. There will also be a 4.77 acre Balinese garden in the township.

(The Edge Property, 20/03/2019)


PUTRAJAYA WILL HONOUR FEDERAL HILL AGREEMENT WITH SP SETIA

The Ministry of Federal Territories will not cancel an agreement entered with SP Setia Bhd’s 50%-owned unit in relation to the Federal Hill (Bukit Persekutuan) development at Bangsar. SP Setia’s 50%-owned unit Setia Federal Hill Sdn Bhd (formerly known as Sentosa Jitra Sdn Bhd) had on November 29, 2012 entered into a Privatisation Agreement to undertake the development and construction of a new integrated health and research complex for the government, to be located within Setia Alam. In exchange, the government will swap approximately 52 acres of prime land located in Bangsar, on which the group plans to develop an integrated luxury residential and commercial development, to be known as “Setia Federal Hill”. SP Setia has honoured its promises to build the health facility, now known as National Institute of Health (NIH) in Setia Alam, Shah Alam. Meanwhile, the government has advised SP Setia to review the development plan at Bukit Persekutuan to ensure the developers minimise the negative impact that could potentially affect residents who live adjacent to the site.

(The Edge Property, 20/03/2019)


LFE GETS RM16 MILLION MIXED DEVELOPMENT DEAL

LFE Corp Bhd has secured a RM16.24 million contract from MME Realty & Management Sdn Bhd to build a mixed residential development project in Mukim Serada, Kuala Terengganu, Terengganu. The project, also known as “Taman Kemang Tiruk” will be developed on 121 parcels of land for a period of 36 months.

(The Sun, 21/03/2019)


DESTINATION OF CHOICE

i-City has been evolving since its inception, and there are lots more to expect in 2019. The “Central i-City Mall” will be opened for public accessible by the end of March 2019. Developed as a joint venture between the Central Pattana Group of Thailand and i-City, the 999,999 sq. ft. net leasable mall development is envisioned to transform Shah Alam into a regional shopping hub and a destination of choice for cruise ships stopping over at Port Klang. The 33-storey Grade A corporate tower which is equipped with Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology will also slated to be completed in 2019. In 2019, i-City Bhd is targeting 12 million visitors to its Leisure Park.

(The Star, 21/03/2019)


ALHA ALFA TO SET UP COSMETICS FACTORY

Alha Alfa Rich Legacy Sdn Bhd has set aside an initial RM2 million to set up its own cosmetics factory in Kajang, Selangor. Set to open their cosmetics facilities in 2020, Alha Alfa is currently importing face powders, lipsticks, mascara that are made in South Korea.

(NST, 16/03/2019)


NAZA ITALIA-MASERATI BRINGS IN 10 LEVANTE VOLCANO SUVS

Naza Italia-Maserati has brought in 10 units of the limited-edition Levante Vulcano sport-utility vehicle (SUV) to Malaysia, hopes to sell 100 cars in 2019. Naza Italia-Maserati plans to invest RM2 million in a service centre in Penang by the end of 2019 and is also looking at setting up outlets in Johor, and East Malaysia in the next couple of years.

(The Star, 18/03/2019)


CAMEL GROUP ALLOCATES US$150 MILLION FOR MALAYSIAN OPS

Camel Group Co Ltd has set aside US$150 million for its Malaysian operation, Camel Power (M) Sdn Bhd, in three phases. The first Camel Power manufacturing plant in Southeast Asia was being built in Kuantan, Pahang, and was expected to be operational in June 2019. It is part of the first two phases of investments of US$100 million. The third-phase investment is allocated for the battery recycling plant that is estimated at US$50 million and will be ready in 2020.

(NST, 22/03/2019)


WESTERN DIGITAL READY TO SELL PJ MANUFACTURING SITE

Western Digital has decided to sell its hard disk drive manufacturing facility site at the Sungei Way Free Trade Industrial Zone, Petaling Jaya (PJ) following the company’s deliberations regarding its staff, production and the ongoing business in Malaysia. Reported in July 2018, Western Digital was looking at a price range of between RM160 million and RM190 million for the 11-acre site which also offers slightly more than 1 million sq. ft. of built-up area. Western Digital may retain one of the buildings on the PJ site as a regional and technical centre, subject to the offers it receives.

(The Edge Financial, 22/03/2019)


BOUSTEAD TO SELL ROYALE CHULAN BUKIT BINTANG FOR RM197 MILLION

Boustead Holdings Bhd has entered into a sale and purchase agreement with Singapore’s Hotel Royal Ltd to dispose of Royale Chulan Bukit Bintang Hotel for RM197 million. The proposed sale is expected to be completed by mid-2019. Weighing the prospects of maintaining the hotel, given low occupancy rates and the age of the property coupled with the increasingly competitive industry, the sale offers greater value to the group.

(The Edge Property & The Star, 16/03/2019; NST, 18/03/2019)


ROYALE CHULAN BUKIT BINTANG SALE YET TO BE APPROVED

The conditions for the sale of the Royale Chulan Bukit Bintang Hotel have yet to be fulfilled and as such the hotel still belongs to Boustead Holdings Bhd. The hotel’s prospective buyer Singapore-based Hotel Royal Ltd has not received clearance from the Economic Planning Unit of the Prime Minister’s Department to go through with the sale. The buyer has also yet to obtain the approval of the Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur Working Committee on Land, and meet the listing requirements of the Singapore Stock Exchange Securities Trading Ltd.

(The Edge Financial, 21/03/2019)


A MISSION TO PROMOTE SELANGOR TO THE WORLD

Tourism Selangor aims to promote its cultural and heritage tourism segment to foreign tourists by participating in the Internationale Tourismus-Borse Berlin (ITB) and target 7.7 million tourists visiting Selangor in 2019. In 2018, the state recorded more than 3.25 million international tourists’ arrivals with 242,000 of this number from European countries.

(The Sun, 19/03/2019)


MODERN LIBRARY TO BE BUILT IN JALAN TENGKU KELANA

The Selangor Public Library Corporation has proposed for the 45-year-old Klang District Library on Jalan Tengku Kelana, Klang to be demolished and a new two-storey structure will be built in its place, transcending typical library settings. Set to begin the proposed project in March 2020, the idea behind the project was not just to increase footfall, but also to make the library a “happening place”.

(The Star, 16/03/2019)


FIVE NEW HOSPITALS FOR SELANGOR

The Selangor State Government, through Selangor State Development Corporation’s (PKNS) wholly-owned subsidiary, Selgate Corporation, plans to build five hospitals in five years for the M40 and B40 group. The hospitals included the Selgate Rawang Hospital at Persiaran Anggun in Sungai Bakau (267 beds), the Selgate Kota Damansara Hospital in Section 3, Selangor Science Park, Petaling Jaya (150 beds), the Selgate Setia Alam Hospital at Precinct 10, Section U13, Shah Alam (160 beds), the Selgate Gombak Hospital at Kampung Seri Makmur, Mukim Batu in Gombak (150 beds) and the Selgate Kuala Selangor will be at Jalan Kuala Selangor, Kuala Selangor.

(The Star, 18/03/2019)


RM1.19 BILLION FOR NS HEALTH FACILITIES

Negeri Sembilan (NS) has been allocated a total of RM1.19 billion under the 3rd Rolling Plan of the 11th Malaysia Plan for construction and expansion projects of hospital and clinic infrastructure in the state. Among the projects under construction are the Rembau hospital (99% completed); a health clinic in Nilai (94%); health clinic in Lenggeng (31%); health clinic in Palong (9%); and health clinic at Rompin (in the tendering process). Two more projects to be implemented are the construction of the specialist block of the Port Dickson Hospital and the construction of an additional block of Tuanku Ampuan Najihah Hospital, Kuala Pilah.

(The Edge Financial, 22/03/2019)


MIEA ATTRIBUTES PROPERTY MARKET SLOWDOWN TO FINANCING ISSUE

According to the Malaysian Institute of Estate Agents (MIEA), the slowdown in the property market is largely due to the problem of financing as demand remains “intact”. The Malaysian MIEA believes the Government and particularly, Bank Negara Malaysia, seriously need to review and liberalise the lending guidelines.

(The Edge Property, 16/03/2019)


NEGERI SEMBILAN STATE GOVERNMENT, REHDA TO ADDRESS HOUSING ISSUES

The Negeri Sembilan State Government will continue to work with the Real Estate and Housing Developers’ Association (REHDA) to address the issue of people who cannot afford to own houses. Any housing project undertaken by the government would serve to complement the others as the government wants to ensure that the developers will include affordable units in their housing projects, noting that the developers would like to lower their cost at the same time.

(The Edge Property, 16/03/2019)


MALAYSIA NEEDS MORE AGED CARE STUDIES TO MAKE BETTER POLICIES

Emphasis should be placed on producing more local research for the aged care community in Malaysia to help the country formulate better healthcare policies for its growing, ageing population. By 2020, those aged 65 and above will represent 7% of the population, and by 2045, Malaysia will become an aged nation (when 14% of its population are aged 65 and above). The Malaysian associate focuses on two areas: healthcare and innovation. Besides aged care, its healthcare division looks at the pharmaceutical sector and enhances the overall healthcare system in the country from financing to treating non-communicable diseases.

(The Edge Financial, 18/03/2019)


IRDA EYES RM300 BILLION TOTAL INVESTMENT BY 3Q19

Iskandar Regional Development Authority (Irda) is optimistic of achieving RM300 billion for its total cumulative committed investment in 3Q19. From 2006 to 2018, Iskandar Malaysia recorded RM285.34 billion in committed investments of which RM194.81 billion came from domestic investors while RM90.5 billion were from foreign investors. Iskandar Malaysia’s top five countries with the highest investments from 2006 to 2018 were China, Singapore, the USA, Japan and Spain. The services sector namely tourism, education, finance, healthcare, creative and logistics recorded RM28.9 billion investments which included emerging technology. In 2018, the tourism sector let the services sector with RM1.94 billion worth of investments.

(The Star, 18/03/2019)


MALAYSIA, SINGAPORE NEED 3 OR 4 MORE BRIDGES

Malaysia and Singapore need at least three to four more bridges to facilitate traffic flow between the two countries. Compared with Penang, which now plans to build its third bridge to the mainland in the form of a tunnel, the traffic flow in Singapore is much bigger.

(The Edge Property, 19/03/2019 & The Sun, 20/03/2019)


R&F MALL JOHOR BAHRU OPENS MARCH 28, 2019

R&F Mall Johor Bahru is preparing for its soft opening on March 28, 2019. Located at the Singapore-Malaysia Custom Immigration Quarantine centre in Johor, the mall has a net lettable of 532,000 sq. ft. The three-storey mall will have several retailers making their debut in Johor including the first Jaya Grocer in Johor Bahru; the first educational playland Kiddomo in Southern Malaysia and the first Carl’s Junior in the city. Among the tenants will also be newcomers to the Malaysian retail scene such as Taiwanese Oregin Ji Ke and ROUTINE by Soon and anchor tenant Emperor Cinemas which hails from Hong Kong.

(The Edge Property, 19/03/2019)


FLOCKING TO JOHOR FOR PREMIUM GOODS

Third phase of Johor Premium Outlets (JPO) development has officially opened to the public. JPO is a 50:50 joint-venture project between Genting Bhd’s subsidiary Genting Plantations Bhd and the US-based Simon Property Group. JPO’s current designer and brand names include Aigner, Armani Outlet, Bally, Bath & Body Works, BlackBarrett, Brooks Brothers Factory Store, CK Calvin Klein, Coach, DKNY, Ermenegildo Zegna Outlet Store and Furla. Others are Gucci, Hugo Boss, Jimmy Choo, Kate Spade New York, Lacoste Outlet, Lululemon, Michael Kors, Nike Factory Store, Polo Ralph Lauren and Salvatore Ferragamo Company Store.

(The Star, 22/03/2019)


NEW STUDY ON KULIM AIRPORT NEEDED

The Penang State Government wants a study to be carried out on the feasibility of the newly announced international airport in Kulim, Kedah to convince those who are sceptical about the need for an airport there. Although the project is a private initiative, the Penang State Government reckon a feasibility study needs to be carried out first to study the impact of the new airport including its effect in the long run on Penang’s economy.

(The Star, 21/03/2019)


SWEETWATER SPV SDN BHD ACQUIRES 9.09% STAKE IN PENANG DEVELOPER

Sweetwater SPV Sdn Bhd has acquired 9.09% stake in Eastern & Oriental Bhd (E&O) by subscribing to a private placement. Sweetwater SPV sees the potential of drawing in buyers from a number of localities to E&O’s reclamation work at Seri Tanjung Pinang (STP) and the high-end development potential on the reclaimed land. Phase two of the reclamation project is to the north of Gurney Drive in Penang and covers an area of 760 acres. A detailed masterplan was currently being finalised for STP phase 2A (STP2A), while infrastructure work has started with the building of the first bridge to the site.

(The Edge Financial & The Star, 20/03/2019)


ICONIC PENANG KFC OUTLET CALLS IT A DAY

The iconic KFC outlet, situated in a 103 year-old mansion along Jalan Larut, Penang, has closed. The outlet, which stirs up nostalgic memories for Penangites, has been operating for 32 years since it first opened in June 1987. It was the oldest outlet in the state and the most unique as it was housed in a British colonial building. KFC franchise owner, QSR Brands (M) Holding Bhd and the building owner “mutually agreed” not renew the tenancy for the building.

(The Star, 16/03/2019 & NST, 17/03/2019)


HARLEY-DAVIDSON MALAYSIA EXPECTS MORE SALES

Harley-Davidson Malaysia expects sales to increase following the reduction in the prices of 12 of its models. The company is considering expanding the outlet into a service hub for the northern region and had invested RM6 million in upgrading the 5,979 sq. ft. facility.

(The Star, 18/03/2019)


HOTEL TO BE BUILT AS PLANNED

A 13 storey hotel will be built on the grounds of the sprawling Soonstead mansion on Jalan Sultan Ahmad Shah, Penang after its neighbour lost an appeal against the developer’s planning permission. Penang Planning Appeals Board dismissed the appeal filed by the management corporation of The Mayfair Super Condominium, which is next door to the mansion.

(The Star, 16/03/2019)


WAYS TO ATTRACT TOURISTS TO SABAH

Sabah is launching five new projects to pursue more tourists to the state. Three of the projects will be in Kota Kinabalu and two in Tawau. In 2019, the state is targeting up to four million visitors, with 2.57 million being domestic tourists.

(The Sun, 18/03/2019)


SABAH TO GET COUNTRY’S FIRST ‘WATER VILLAGE’ FIRE-FIGHTING UNIT

Sabah will host the country’s first “water village” unit. Based in Semporna, the water settlement unit will comprise existing personnel who will be given special training to combat fire and to conduct rescue operations in water settlements. An allocation of RM50 million has also been approved for the establishment of a fire and rescue department training centre in Sabah.

(The Edge Property, 19/03/2019)


FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO RESTORE ‘SICK’ PROJECTS IN SARAWAK

The Federal Government will ensure that ‘sick’ projects in Sarawak to be restored immediately and effectively implemented until fully completed. The ‘sick’ projects in Sarawak include Sri Aman Hospital, Petra Jaya Hospital and a number of schools, especially in remote areas, which lack road accessibility making it difficult to transport construction materials.

(The Edge Property, 19/03/2019)


RICS

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Jones Lang Wootton