The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 10th July 2018

Singapore Economy

Singapore warns of ‘significant’ impact should trade war escalate
An escalation of the trade conflict between the US and China will “significantly impact” Singapore’s open economy, Minister for Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing has warned.  Speaking in Parliament on Monday, he said that while the net impact of the current US-China trade tiff on the Singapore economy and its workers is “likely to be modest”, this is provided there is no further escalation in trade tensions.

Virtual Singapore project to be ready by end-2018: Tharman
VIRTUAL Singapore, the digital map of the country rendered in virtual reality and based on real-time dynamic data, should be ready by the end of this year, said Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam at the Singapore International Water Week, the World Cities Summit and CleanEnviro Summit on July 9.  The initiative will have many uses, from visualising the effects of local upgrading projects on the landscape to planning barrier-free routes.

Singapore Real Estate

What cooling measures? Weekend buyers still flocking to showflats
Despite surprise cooling measures that took effect on Friday, sales at three mass-market properties here continued to garner what experts considered a fair amount of interest over the weekend.  The number of units moved at Park Colonial, Riverfront Residences and Stirling Residences was significantly lower than the more than 1,000 units sold on Thursday, when the projects were launched in knee-jerk reaction to the announced changes to the additional buyer’s stamp duty (ABSD) and loan-to-value (LTV) limits.

Amid property curbs, some en bloc attempts go on while others change tracks
Singapore: While at least one collective sale bid will be launched as planned this week, others have hit the pause button or are drawing up new plans amid uncertain prospects following the surprise of fresh property cooling measures.  An extension in tender closing dates is one way that some marketing agents hope will keep their en bloc sale bids alive. They also told Channel NewsAsia that homeowners’ price expectations, the size and location of sites will become increasingly important factors for collective sale attempts moving forward.

Singapore banks to gain from property cooling measures: Moody’s
Singapore banks are expected to benefit from property cooling measures which kicked in on July 6, which will reduce speculative demand for residential properties and increase banks’ buffers “if and when property prices fall significantly”, ratings agency Moody’s said on Monday.  The measures, which include higher additional buyer’s stamp duty rates and tighter loan-to-value (LTV) limits, reduce the risk of a property price bubble, future price shocks and losses from mortgage loans, which is credit positive for Singapore’s banks, it added.

Three charts that help explain Singapore’s new property curbs 
Singapore — The Government imposed cooling measures on its property market last week, in a bid to contain what the central bank described as “euphoria” in the sector. Here are three charts showing some of the factors behind the government’s concerns:

Plans for Jurong still intact, no matter how rail project pans out
The vision for the Jurong Lake District has not changed, regardless of how the high speed rail (HSR) project between Singapore and Malaysia turns out, said National Development Minister Lawrence Wong on Monday.  The fate of the area – touted as Singapore’s second central business district with the HSR terminus as its centrepiece – has been in the spotlight since new Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said in May that his country plans to scrap the multi-billion dollar rail project.

Companies’ Brief

Keppel, ST Engg team up on smart city developments
Keppel Corporation and Singapore Technologies Engineering (ST Engineering) on Monday agreed to team up for the design and implementation of smart city masterplans and solutions.  Keppel Urban Solutions, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Keppel Corp, will draw on its expertise as an end-to-end integrated master developer. The enlarged Keppel group has a strong track record in developing large-scale urban developments across Asia. Some of its key projects include the Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-City in China and Palm City in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

Broker’s take: OCBC downgrades CDL to ‘hold’; cuts fair value to S$9.59
Analysts at OCBC Investment Research have downgraded their call on mainboard-listed City Developments Limited (CDL) to “hold” and slashed the fair value of the stock to S$9.59 from S$15.78 as the brokerage expects the property developer to be one of the worst hit among developers under its coverage.  This comes as property and banking stocks took a hit on Friday after the Singapore government’s announcement of a set of cooling measures, which include a hike in stamp duty and tighter loan limits, on the Singapore residential property late on Thursday.

AA Reit unveils plans to upgrade NorthTech
The manager of AIMS AMP Capital Industrial Reit (AA Reit) plans to spend S$13 million to enhance the S$102 million NorthTech industrial building in Woodlands.  The works include upgrading its passenger lift lobbies, toilets, drop-off area and external landscaping. A new carpark will also be created while energy efficient air-conditioning system and lightings as well as water efficient fittings will be installed.

Oxley sold homes worth S$1b; expects 12-19% net margins for new launches
Oxley Holdings, one of the most highly-geared developers listed in Singapore, has sold S$1 billion worth of residential units from five project launches here so far this year.  Net profit margins from these projects range from 15 per cent to 25 per cent, the homegrown developer said in presentation slides filed with the Singapore Exchange.

Yanlord Land acquires Hangzhou residential site
Real estate developer Yanlord Land Group has acquired a prime residential development site in Hangzhou for about 2.94 billion yuan (S$600 million) as it continues to expand its footprint within the Yangtze River Delta.  The 154,500 square metre (sq m), gross floor area site in Hangzhou was acquired by its wholly-owned subsidiary, Hangzhou Renyuan Property Development Co, via a public land auction.

UK group in exclusive due diligence for Manulife Centre
British property group Chelsfield is understood to be effecting exclusive due diligence on Manulife Centre in Bras Basah Road with a view to purchasing the 11-storey commercial building.  The price is expected to be around S$550 million. This would reflect around S$2,300 psf on the building’s net lettable area (NLA).The building has retail space on street level and offices above. Manulife Centre is being offered on a remaining leasehold tenure of about 96 years.

Allianz Real Estate putting more in China, eyes new economy, logistics
The property investment arm of Germany’s Allianz SE expects China to account for up to 50 per cent of its Asia-Pacific fund allocation going forward from 40 per cent now, with focus on the new economy and logistics sectors, a senior executive said.  The insurer and asset manager on Monday said it bought an office tower in a Beijing software park that was fully leased to Chinese tech firms. It expects to complete another purchase in a Shanghai business park “within a couple of weeks”, said Rushabh Desai, Asia-Pacific chief executive at Allianz Real Estate.

OKP contract to build TPE-PIE viaduct ended
The Land Transport Authority (LTA) and a unit of homegrown construction company OKP Holdings have mutually agreed to terminate a contract to build TPE-PIE Changi viaduct effectively from Monday.  A new replacement tender will be called later this month, LTA said in a media statement on Monday afternoon. 


More visibility needed in renewal of land tenure for industrial Reits
The government’s move to shorten industrial land leases has clearly served its purpose well in keeping costs down for end-users. On the other hand, it has been a bane for industrial Reits, which have found limited room for expansion locally and sought out greener pastures overseas in recent years.  But as the land leases of their existing properties are increasingly run down, industrial Reits are stuck between a rock and a hard place if they wish to maintain their asset exposure in their home market.

HDB resale market to see ‘little’ benefit from cooling measures: Experts
Singapore: The Housing and Development Board (HDB) resale market could see a slight increase in interest from buyers hard-pressed to buy a private property after new cooling measures were introduced last week, but the overall demand is unlikely to be substantial enough to make much of an impact on the market, analysts said.  In a surprise announcement on Jul 5, the Government raised Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) rates and tightened loan-to-value (LTV) limits on residential property purchases, in an effort to “cool the property market and keep price increases in line with economic fundamentals”.

Asean smart city initiatives risk raising their own governance issues
As the Asean chair this year, Singapore is proposing an Asean Smart Cities Network (ASCN) framework that will create a set of normative guidelines to inform a member state’s smart city development. The process is moving fast, with a concept note adopted in April at the 32nd Asean Summit and the first ASCN meeting held at the World Cities Summit on July 8 that saw five agreements signed between ASCN cities, solution providers and external partners.

Goodbye, legacy cities. Hello, future cityscape
South-East Asia is home to some of the most vibrant megacities in the world such as Manila, Jakarta and Bangkok, with expectations that urbanisation rates will continue to surge in the region. This level of urbanisation is expected to bring about significant benefits in the form of higher incomes and productivity, and greater access to social and civic opportunities for citizens.

Big scope to spread solutions from city to city: Tharman
The developing world may bear the brunt of a multitude of challenges, but it is the responsibility of the global community to help them solve these problems, Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam said yesterday.  He said the developing world, especially poorer countries experiencing surges in their younger workforce, may face the most severe challenges in dealing with such situations.

No official word from new Malaysia govt on RTS Link to JB
Singapore has not heard “anything officially” from Malaysia on the Rapid Transit System (RTS) Link between Woodlands and Johor Baru since its new government came into power.  Updating the House yesterday on the rail link – which will be an extension of the upcoming Thomson-East Coast MRT line – Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan said his Malaysian counterpart Anthony Loke told Channel NewsAsia on May 30 that “the RTS will proceed”, although Malaysia would “have to re-study the project in terms of cost and so on”.

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