BUDGET 2022 TO FOCUS ON TOURISM, RETAIL AND SME SECTORS

For the upcoming Budget 2022 which is to be tabled on 29th October 2021, the Malaysian Government will focus on several sectors which are badly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic such as tourism, retail, and small and medium enterprises (SME). The government is optimistic that the country’s economy will recover in 2022 in line with positive growth projections made by the International Monetary Fund and World Bank for 2022.

(The Star, 02/10/2021 & The Edge Property, 03/10/2021)


STEADY TRADE PERFORMANCE IN AUGUST 2021

Malaysia’s monthly export and import unit value indices continued to record positive growth in August 2021 at 1.4% and 0.9% respectively. The growth in export unit value index was driven by increases in the index of mineral fuels (5.3%), animal and vegetable oils and fats (1.4%) as well as machinery and transport equipment (0.6%). Meanwhile, the growth in the import unit value index was driven by growth in the index of mineral fuels (7.2%), animal and vegetable oils and fats (1.5%) and manufactured goods (0.3%).

(The Edge Markets 04/10/2021; NST & The Star, 05/10/2021)


NCIA: RM2.34 BILLION INVESTMENTS, 4,400 NEW JOBS FOR PERAK

The Northern Corridor Implementation Authority (NCIA) has secured  five  high-impact investments totalling RM2.34 billion out of the total investment target for 2021 amounting to RM3.8 billion. The investments were derived from five local companies which include Eco Medi Glove Sdn Bhd, Onetexx Sdn Bhd, PNA Technologies Sdn Bhd, Hicom-Teck See Manufacturing

(M) Sdn Bhd, and Dynacare Sdn Bhd, whereby 4,400 jobs were generated in Perak. NCIA has forged closer cooperation with the Perak State Government to plan, implement and coordinate developments in less developed regions such as Kamunting, Kampung Gajah, Tanjung Malim, and Sitiawan.

(The Edge Markets & The Star, 04/10/2021; The Sun, 05/10/2021)


ECER ATTRACTS RM13 BILLION COMMITTED INVESTMENT

The East Coast Economic Region (ECER) has successfully attracted RM13 billion in committed investments to create over 10,600 new job opportunities and 570 entrepreneurship opportunities across the economic region.

In Kelantan, Phase 2 of the Laman Warisan Kampung Laut redevelopment to transform Kampung Laut into a thriving tourism and cultural destination would be completed in March 2022. It would comprise Laman Warisan Seni and the relocation of Masjid Kampung Laut. In Terengganu, the ECER Development Council is maintaining its focus to attract new investments especially into Kerteh Biopolymer Park which is currently undergoing expansion works for Phases 3B and 4. In Pahang, the construction of a 29-kilometre water pipeline with an anticipated capacity of 90 million litres per day from Kemaman, Terengganu to Gebeng, Pahang is expected to be completed by April 2023. In Mersing, Johor, the Jemaluang Dairy Valley (JDV) project is underway with the signing of a collaboration agreement between the council and the Johor State Government on 18th September 2021 to develop the JDV project as part of the overall strategy to create ECER Dairy Valley. The JDV project is expected to be fully operational in 2023 with 100 new job openings and 30 agropreneurial opportunities for the local community in Mersing.

(The Edge Markets, 05/10/2021)


MORE MAJOR INVESTMENTS

As of August 2021, Malaysia has approved RM81.9 billion worth of investments in the manufacturing sector. The sum was an increase of 32.7% compared to the same period in 2020. At the same time, Malaysia recorded a total of RM107.5 billion in investments in the manufacturing, services and primary sectors in 1H21, involving 2,110 projects that were expected to create 44,994 job opportunities. Approved foreign direct investments for 1H21 surged by 214.9% to RM62.5 billion, compared to 1H20, which stood at RM19.8 billion.

(The Star, 06/10/2021)


CENTRAL SPINE ROAD, A GAME-CHANGER FOR PAHANG BARAT

The Central Spine Road will reduce the  travel distance between the East and West Coast of Peninsular Malaysia and open up new areas of economic activity and investment in the vicinity. The project will span from Bentong, Pahang to Kuala Krai, Kelantan and Kota Bharu-Kuala Krai Highway and is reportedly scheduled to be completed by 2025.

(The Edge Markets, 03/10/2021)


PHASE 1 OF MRT PUTRAJAYA LINE TO OPEN IN NOVEMBER 2021

Phase 1 of the MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) Putrajaya Line (covering the stretch between the Kwasa Damansara and Kampung Batu stations) is 99.9% completed and is expected to open in November 2021. Phase 2 (from the Kentonmen to Putrajaya Sentral stations) is 93.52% completed and is expected to become operational in January 2023.

(The Edge Markets 04/10/2021 & The Star, 05/10/2021)


ECRL PROJECT SLIGHTLY BEHIND SCHEDULE

The East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) project is slightly behind schedule at 23.96% completion as of 31st August 2021 due to movement control restrictions. For Section A from Kota Baru to Dungun, which includes six stations, the progress currently stands at 11.59%, which is behind the progress schedule of 12.01%. For Section B from Dungun to Temerloh, the progress is slightly ahead of schedule at 28.04% while for Section C from Temerloh to Pelabuhan Klang, the Government is still studying the best alignment to ensure optimal multiplier effects on the local economy.

(The Edge Markets, 05/10/2021 & The Sun, 06/10/2021)


HATTEN LAND TO DEVELOP TOKEN SYSTEM IN MELAKA TO CREATE DIGITAL ASSETS

Hatten Land’s subsidiary Hatten Technology (S) Pte Ltd has signed a deal with Prakal Pte Ltd (also known as Enjinstarter) to develop a token system and create digital assets to promote the digital economy in Melaka. The digital assets, which include non-fungible tokens (NFTs), can be exchanged for or connected with the current loyalty point system of its malls and hotels, and of the other participating hotels, attractions, malls and shops. The project will start in the middle of October 2021 with the delivery of the token system, crypto-related elements and components connected to the metaverse due by the end of March 2022.

(The Edge Markets, 07/10/2021)


SC ESTATE BUILDER SIGNS MOU

SC Estate Builder Bhd has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Kedah royalty to acquire a 104.62-hectare land in Sungai Laka, Kubang Pasu, Kedah for a proposed 100- megawatt solar power plant as part of the environment, social and governance initiative projects.

(The Edge Markets, 05/10/2021 & The Star, 06/10/2021)


Y&G ACQUIRES LAND FOR RM15 MILLION

Y&G Corp Bhd will be acquiring nine parcels of freehold land measuring 43.637 acres in Kuala Selangor for RM14.5 million. The land would enable it to expand its property  development activities and the acquisition was in line with its corporate strategy to focus on integrating sustainability into its business.

(The Star, 06/10/2021)


COUNTRY HEIGHTS CHAIRMAN TO INJECT RM554 MILLION ASSETS INTO GROUP

Country Heights Holdings Bhd has entered into five Heads of Agreements (HoAs) to acquire assets from its executive chairman and controlling shareholder’s private investment holdings. The first HoA is between Country Heights and Country Heights Venture Sdn Bhd for the proposed acquisition of a 29.63% stake in Country Heights Health Tourism Sdn Bhd for RM6 million. Under the second HoA, Country Heights has proposed to acquire office units of the 9th and 10th floors of Block A of the Mines Waterfront Business Park @ The Mines Resort City with a total area of 22,500 sq. ft., from Fresh Avenue Sdn Bhd, for an indicative purchase price of RM12 million. Under the third HoA, Country Heights proposes to buy a 5.62-acre land in Ulu Langat from Bee Garden Holdings Sdn Bhd for RM42 million. The fourth HoA involves the proposed acquisition by the group of a parcel of land in Kajang, measuring 2.82 acres, from Castlepark Sdn Bhd for RM21 million. The group also proposed to acquire a parcel of waterfront development land in Petaling, measuring 37.98 acres, for a purchase consideration of RM400 million from Mines Wonderland Sdn Bhd. Lastly, the group has proposed to buy a portion of leasehold land in Petaling, measuring 4.325 acres of a total 7.244 acres from Mines Resort Sdn Bhd for RM73 million. This acquisition is for the development plan of serviced apartments under the name Phase Two of Dream City.

(The Edge Markets, 07/10/2021)


PROPERTY DEVELOPER PARAGRENE LAND TO FLOAT ON MAIN MARKET

Paragrene Land Bhd is to float on the Main Market of Bursa Malaysia, with funds raised from the exercise to be used to pay for project development expenses. The company has completed projects comprising 1,030 units of residential properties that span across a total land area size of 47.15 acres in Puchong South, Selangor. Paragrene Land’s ongoing development projects include both residential and mixed-use developments on a total land area of 24.24 acres, with an estimated total Gross Development Value (GDV) of RM1.98 billion. In addition, the company has a future development project which is expected to be launched in 1Q22. Dubbed “GreneForest City” in Puchong South, the project has an estimated total GDV of RM3.2 billion.

(The Edge Markets, 07/10/2021)


79 ABANDONED HOUSING PROJECTS IN PENINSULAR MALAYSIA

Among the leading causes of abandoned projects in Peninsular Malaysia are the weak financial positions of developers involved and weak project viability. The Ministry of Housing and Local Government Malaysia had identified 79 abandoned housing projects involving 17,724 housing units in Peninsular Malaysia currently, thereby affecting 11,824 buyers.

(The Edge Markets, 07/10/2021)


LIVING ON CLOUD 9

Located on 5.6 acres of leasehold land, Platinum Victory’s “PV9  Residences” comprises 953 condominium units housed over two 34-storey blocks, offering three choices of designs  with built-ups of 1,000 sq. ft., 1,100 sq. ft. and 1,300 sq. ft. Expected to be completed by December 2021, the residential title development is priced from RM530,000.

(StarProperty, 05/10/2021)


TOWERS 1 AND 2 OF CORE RESIDENCE @ TRX ACHIEVE A 70% SALE RATE

Core Previous Development Sdn Bhd’s freehold “Core Residence @ TRX” in Kuala Lumpur had achieved a 70% sales rate for Towers 1 and 2. Slated to complete in 2023, the developer (a joint venture between China Communications Construction Group and WCT Holdings Bhd) will soon be launching Tower 3 with an international hotel operator. Sitting on a 1.65-acre parcel at the intersection of Jalan Bukit Bintang and Jalan Tun Razak, the project comprises three blocks of serviced residences targeting professionals and financial practitioners who will live and work in the business district of Kuala Lumpur.

(The Edge Markets, 05/10/2021 & NST, 06/10/2021)


15 DILAPIDATED PUBLIC HOUSING SITES IDENTIFIED FOR REDEVELOPMENT

A total of 15 public housing sites that are dilapidated and no longer conducive to be occupied have been identified for redevelopment. The sites covering 44.83 hectares and involving 10,738 housing units will be included in the list of Kuala Lumpur redevelopment areas in the draft Kuala Lumpur Development Plan 2040.

(The Edge Property, 06/10/2021)


CREST BUILDER SECURES RM192 MILLION KUALA LUMPUR CONDOMINIUM JOB

Crest Builder Sdn Bhd has secured a RM192 million contract for the proposed development of two blocks of condominiums in Kuala Lumpur from Allevia Sdn Bhd. The project involves the construction of a 45-storey condominium (159 units) and a 40-storey condominium (135 units).

(The Edge Markets, 07/10/2021; The Sun & The Star, 08/10/2021)


OCR’S THE PANO TOPS-OUT

OCR Group of Companies’ “The Pano” serviced residences are 86% sold to date and marked its topping-out ceremony on 6th October 2021. Located along Jalan Ipoh, Kuala Lumpur, the freehold residential project featuring only 363 units is spread across twin 26-storey blocks. Slated for completion by 1Q22, the unit built-up sizes range between 609 sq. ft. and 1,831 sq. ft.

(The Edge Property, 07/10/2021; The Sun & NST, 08/10/2021)


RUBBEREX IN JOINT COLLABORATION TO DEVELOP, OPERATE EMPIRE CITY MALL

Rubberex Corp (M) Bhd (glove-maker) is proposing to take part in a collaboration with Alliance Premier Sdn Bhd, EXSIM Holdings Sdn Bhd and JT Momentum Sdn Bhd via a joint venture company Alliance Empire Sdn Bhd, in order to develop and operate Empire City Mall. Located along Lebuhraya Damansara-Puchong, the mall has a net lettable area of 2.5 million sq. ft. The new opening date for the partially completed mall is expected to be 2023. The mall is part of the larger Empire City Damansara (ECD1) project, which has a gross development value of RM5 billion, developed by Mammoth Empire Holdings Sdn Bhd. ECD 1 also comprises hotels, offices and apartments.

(The Edge Property, 05/10/2021)


RGM LOWERS LOCAL RETAIL SECTOR’S 2021 GROWTH FORECAST

Retail Group Malaysia (RGM) has revised downwards its forecast for Malaysia’s 2021 retail industry growth rate to 0.8% from 4.0% projected in June 2021 after taking into consideration the lower growth in 2Q21 and the revision of its 3Q21 estimate. The Malaysian retail industry recorded a positive growth rate of 3.4% in retail sales for 2Q21, from a 30.9% contraction in 2Q20. The positive growth rate during the quarter under review was due solely to the low base effect a year ago. The retail sale growth rate contracted by 4.4% in 1H21, compared with 1H20. Meanwhile, members of the Malaysia Retailers Association and Malaysia Retail Chain Association project an average growth rate of -15.1% during 3Q21 as physical stores of the majority of retail trades were shut during the first half of 3Q21. RGM expects the retail industry to gain momentum in its recovery by the end of 2021 and maintains its estimate at 12.7% for 4Q21, compared with 4Q20.

(The Edge Markets, 07/10/2021; The Star & The Sun, 08/10/2021)


FIHB SELLS LAND, GOING INTO RENEWABLE ENERGY

Federal International Holdings Bhd (FIHB) is disposing of a parcel of leasehold industrial land in Banting, Selangor to Filtermation (Mfg) Sdn Bhd for RM24.5 million, to venture into the renewable energy segment. The land is occupied by a single-storey industrial furniture factory with an annexed double-storey office building and ancillary buildings. The disposal would free up cash flow to push forward its plan to venture into the renewable energy segment through its partnership with China’s State Power Investment Corp.

(The Edge Property, 05/10/2021; The Sun & The Star, 06/10/2021)


DYNACIATE TO ACQUIRE 8-ACRE INDUSTRIAL LAND IN SERENDAH

Dynaciate Group Bhd is acquiring an 8-acre piece of industrial land in Serendah, Selangor, from Brem Holdings Bhd for RM10.1 million. The acquisition is in line with its strategy to grow its land bank at strategic locations for future development into industrial buildings such as warehouses and factories.

(The Edge Markets, 07/10/2021)


MALAYSIA TARGETS INTERNATIONAL BORDER REOPENING IN DECEMBER 2021

Malaysia is looking to reopen its borders to foreign travel in December 2021, once 90% of its adult population is fully vaccinated. Malaysia’s accelerated vaccine rollout has recently allowed for the Malaysian Government to gradually ease restrictions on movement and allow benefits for the fully inoculated.

(The Edge Markets, 03/10/2021)


PVW AND ARCHIPELAGO INTERNATIONAL TO DEBUT GRAND ASTON IN PANGKOR

Pangkor Venice World (PVW) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Archipelago International to introduce the first 5-star international brand Grand Aston (one of the premier upscale brands in Indonesia) to Malaysia. As the only mixed development in Pangkor Island, the project will offer 5-star hotel suites, a duty-free commercial complex, an outdoor and indoor theme park, and a broad range of facilities and amenities along with eco-sustainable technologies to future proof it.

(StarProperty, 04/10/2021)


FIRST DOUBLETREE BY HILTON IN PUTRAJAYA OPENS

Hilton is opening the “DoubleTree by Hilton Putrajaya Lakeside” in Putrajaya. Owned  by Indaman Putrajaya Sdn Bhd, the 290-room hotel is managed by Hilton. The hotel is the third DoubleTree by Hilton hotel to open in Southeast Asia in 2021.

(The Sun, 05/10/2021)


HOLIDAY VILLA HOTEL IN SUBANG NO LONGER IN OPERATION

Holiday Villa Hotel & Conference Centre Subang has ceased operation effective 1st October 2021. IJM Land Bhd which owns the hotel is said to be examining a range of options to boost the property’s value. The 309-room business resort hotel is situated on 2.75 hectares of landscaped ground located at Jalan SS12/1, Subang Jaya.

(NST,  05/10/2021)


DOUBLETREE BY HILTON I-CITY HOTEL OPENING IN 2022

DoubleTree by Hilton i-City Hotel, the second hotel in I-Berhad’s flagship i-City mixed development in Selangor’s  Golden  Triangle, is set  to open in 2022.  The 300-room  hotel will feature the first 360-degree LED digital canvas in its grand ballroom, supported by state-of-the- art light and  sound systems that surround its circumference to provide  guests with an unparalleled experience. With approximately  11,000 sq. ft. of function space spread over  two floors, the 43-storey hotel will also have six versatile meeting rooms.

(NST,  06/10/2021)


TOURIST EXPENDITURE LOSSES SET TO RISE TO RM165 BILLION

Malaysia’s estimated losses in tourist expenditure is set to rise further to RM165 billion in 2021 from about RM135 billion in 2020, due to the implementation of the Movement Control Order. Businesses in the tourism sector were affected in the past 12 months, particularly in terms of job losses.

(The Edge Markets, 07/10/2021; The Sun & NST, 08/10/2021)


TPG, JOHOR CORP WEIGH TAKING KPJ PRIVATE

TPG Capital (United States private equity firm) and Johor Corp (Malaysian state-owned investment company) are considering a plan to take Malaysia’s KPJ Healthcare Bhd private. Deliberations are still ongoing and the firms could decide not to go ahead with the plan. KPJ has more than 28 specialist hospitals located throughout the South-East Asian nation. The healthcare provider also has investments in hospitals in Indonesia, Bangkok and Bangladesh and a retirement resort in Australia.

(The Star & NST, 02/10/2021)


RM3.5 BILLION FOR MELAKA SENTRAL DEVELOPMENT

Melaka Sentral on Jalan Tun Razak, Melaka will be redeveloped in stages over seven years starting June 2022 and will involve RM3.5 billion in investments. The redevelopment project would encompass five sectors on 7.28 hectares of land. The first sector will comprise the arrival terminal for express and domestic buses, one condominium block, a hotel tower and 18 cinema halls and commercial space. Work on the first sector will be completed in January 2024, followed by the second sector in June 2025.

(NST,  02/10/2021)


THREE MELAKA ISLANDS TO BE GAZETTED AS MARINE PARK

Pulau Undan, Pulau Nangka and Pulau Dodol will be gazetted as the first national marine park in Melaka, pending approval from the Melaka State Government. The islands, covering a one nautical mile area, would be gazetted under Section 41 of the Fisheries Act 1985 to ensure the sustainability of marine biodiversity in the area.

(The Star, 02/10/2021 & NST, 04/10/2021)


S P SETIA’S KL ECO CITY RECEIVES MSC CYBERCENTRE STATUS

KL Eco City (KLEC), Kuala Lumpur is now a Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC) Cybercentre. With the Mercu 2 corporate office tower located within KLEC functioning as the approved designated premises for MSC Cybercentre by Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation, this means the entire KLEC is demarcated as an MSC Malaysia Cybercentre. MSC Cybercentre status is awarded to cities, townships or large building complexes for providing dedicated and specialised industry areas for MSC-status companies or Information and Communications Technology (ICT) facilitated businesses to locate their operations.

(The Edge Markets, 04/10/2021)


LIEN HOE’S UNIT RECEIVES JOHOR PTG’S APPROVALS FOR A LAND IN MASAI

Lien Hoe Corporation Bhd’s wholly-owned subsidiary Christine Resorts Sdn Bhd has obtained Planning Permission Layout and Surrender Back and Re-alienation approvals from the Johor Land and Mines Department for  a 27.93-hectare land that formed part of a larger mixed development located within Bandar Seri Alam in Masai, Johor. With the approval, the company has fulfilled clause 1.1 of the Sales and Purchase Agreement with Countryland Realty Sdn Bhd, thereby enabling it to sell the land for RM88.66 million.

(The Edge Markets, 05/10/2021)


INVESTPENANG OPTIMISTIC ON STATE’S POST-COVID RECOVERY

InvestPenang is optimistic about Penang’s recovery post-Covid-19, driven by the State’s steady Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth at an average of 5.0%  annually  from  2016  to  2019 despite challenges posed by the pandemic. The State’s GDP recorded RM92.6 billion in 2020, whereby the manufacturing sector grew 2.8% year on year in 2020 compared with 2.7% in 2019, which helped to cushion negative growth experienced in other sectors during the same period.

(The Sun, 07/10/2021)


PENANG BEACH HOTELS EYE 60% OCCUPANCY RATE

Hotels in Penang, particularly beach hotels, are anticipating at least 60% occupancy after 15th October 2021. Business at most beach hotels had not picked up, with occupancy hovering between 30% and 40% last weekend, whereby only one or two establishments managed to reach rates beyond 50%.

(NST,  05/10/2021)


BERTAM ALLIANCE’S CONTRACT FROM INTEGRAL ACRES TERMINATED

Bertam Alliance Bhd’s RM8.3 million contract secured from Integral Acres Sdn Bhd to complete external works and services and balance of works for a six-storey car park and community facilities block at PR1MA @ Sandakan City Centre, has been terminated. The termination follows a notification by Integral Acres that the latter received a notice of termination from its client, PR1MA Corp Malaysia, on 27th August 2021.

(The Edge Markets, 04/10/2021)


SARAWAK’S KUCHING SMART CITY MASTERPLAN SET TO BOOST PUBLIC SERVICE

Sarawak has launched the Kuching Smart City Masterplan (2021-2025) to boost the State’s effective public service delivery, accelerate economic growth and improve the welfare of its citizens. The master plan aims to get everyone connected, especially the citizens and government, via certain application platforms where they can share information, raise issues or complaints and seek solutions.

(NST,  06/10/2021)


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