The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 13th July 2018

Top Story

Singapore Q2 GDP growth below expectations at 3.8%: Flash data
Singapore’s economy expanded 3.8 per cent year-on-year in the second quarter of 2018, lower than economist expectations of 4.1 per cent growth, according to Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) advance estimates out on Friday.  This was also down from the 4.3 per cent expansion in the first three months of the year.

Singapore Economy

GIC 20-year returns ease to 3.4% amid challenging climate
GIC, the manager of Singapore’s reserves, continues to deliver steady long-term returns, but warns of a challenging investment climate ahead that could pressure its key performance metric.  Its benchmark 20-year annualised real rate of return between April 1998 and March 2018 (FY 2018), adjusted for global inflation, was 3.4 per cent above global inflation.

Retail sales up 0.1% in May
The retail sector enjoyed a slight lift in May, although growth was hindered in part by lower vehicle sales.  Total takings were up 0.1 per cent from May last year to an estimated $3.8 billion, with online transactions accounting for 4.3 per cent. If motor vehicles were excluded, the rise would be 2.2 per cent.

MOUs between Singapore and S. Korea to promote trade and collaboration
Singapore and South Korea on Thursday signed a raft of partnerships aimed at strengthening bilateral trade and investment, as well as promoting collaborations between companies and government agencies of the two countries.  Enterprise Singapore inked two memoranda of understanding with Korean bodies, with the signing witnessed by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and the visiting South Korean President Moon Jae-in, who is on a three-day state visit to Singapore.–mou-to-expand-cooperation-10523598

Singapore, EU free trade agreement a ‘pathfinder’ deal: Chan
The free trade deal between Singapore and the European Union (EU), which is pending ratification, is a “pathfinder” deal that could pave the way for similar pacts between the EU and other Asian nations, Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing said on Wednesday.  Speaking to the media after a day of meetings with EU trade officials in Brussels to discuss the EU-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (EUSFTA), Mr Chan said that his visit to the EU capital comes at a critical juncture also because of rising protectionism around the world.

S’pore could explore housing regulators, start-ups under one roof: Chan Chun Sing 
Paris — Singapore could explore bringing regulators and start-ups under one roof, where government officials work hand in hand with fledgling businesses to “innovate” the rules, said Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing.  Speaking to reporters in Paris on Thursday (July 12) after a visit to Station F — the world’s largest start-up incubator — Mr Chan said government officials were stationed there initially to help start-ups get their businesses going.

Singapore, Aussie infrastructure players ‘should join hands to capture more opportunities’
Singapore and Australian infrastructure players should work together to reap “significant potential gains” amid the rising demand for infrastructure investments in the region, said Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry Koh Poh Koon.  While Singapore is Australia’s top trading partner among Asean countries, Dr Koh noted that there is “still space to build on our strong partnership and expand economic cooperations” in the infrastructure sector.

Singapore ranks 7th for citizen well-being: report
Singapore remains the only non-European country ranked in the top 10 for well-being, coming in seventh out of 152 countries in the latest edition of Boston Consulting Group’s (BCG) Sustainable Economic Development Assessment (SEDA) report.  Over the last decade, Singapore’s scores have improved across most of the study’s 10 areas, particularly infrastructure and employment.

Asian markets gain despite lingering trade tensions
Asian markets bounced back from Wednesday’s sell-offs, sparked by American intentions to slap tariffs on more Chinese goods, to rally yesterday.  The Nikkei 225 in Japan, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng, the Shanghai Composite, the Kospi in South Korea, the ASX 200 in Australia and Kuala Lumpur Composite all ended higher.

Singapore Real Estate

Singapore’s biggest developers see property market slowing after cooling measures
Singapore: The local property market will see some slowing on the back of surprise cooling measures though a crash is unlikely, said the top executives from some of Singapore’s biggest developers.   However, the chief financial officers of GuocoLand Group and CapitaLand Group differed on whether the Government’s latest step, which involved tweaks to Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) rates for both buyers and developers, was necessary.

High-end property segment likely to be more affected by latest cooling measures: Developers 
Singapore — The high-end property segment will likely be more affected by the latest round of cooling measures compared with mass-market projects, industry insiders said.  Buyers and investors hoping for private home prices to drop sharply due to the measures will not be seeing that happen in the near term, as developers said that they are not going to cut prices massively.

Allianz deal latest to mark office rent upturn
Allianz is understood to have entered into a lease at ASB Tower, the new development coming up on the former CPF Building site in Robinson Road, at a gross signing rental of around S$11.50 per square foot (psf) a month.  The deal is said to reflect a gross effective rent of close to S$10 psf a month after taking into account the rent-free period and other incentives.

Four freehold shophouses on Macpherson Road put on sale
Commercial real estate services and investment firm CBRE has launched for sale four freehold shophouses on Macpherson Road, via an expression of interest exercise.  The four properties comprise an intermediate two-storey shophouse, two adjoining two-storey shophouses, and a corner two-storey shophouse.

Companies’ Brief

Frasers Property unit takes 75% stake in Vietnam property development company
Multinational property company, Frasers Property, said on Thursday that it will be spending 799 billion dong (S$47,3 million) for a majority stake in Phu An Dien Real Estate Joint Stock Company (PAD), which will undertake the development of a residential-cum-commercial project in Vietnam.  The project will be on a mixed-use development plot in Linh Trung Ward, Thu Duc District, in Ho Chi Minh City.

Mapletree installs refurbished 1938 fire engine as its latest art piece
More than 70 preschoolers attended Mapletree’s launch of its newest art piece, a refurbished 1938 Merryweather Pump Escape Fire Engine, on July 11.  The MindChamps and Sparkletots preschoolers learnt to assemble a Mapletree-commissioned cardboard model of the fire engine, which also serves as a stationery holder.

Oxley executives in buying spree: CEO takes 11m shares at S$3.9m
Oxley Holdings executive chairman and chief executive Ching Chiat Kwong bought more than 11 million company shares on the open market from Tuesday to Thursday for S$3.9 million, joining the company’s deputy chief executive in a bout of buying activity this week.  On Tuesday, Mr Ching purchased 8.4 million shares over three transactions at per-share prices between 34.76 Singapore cents and 35.02 Singapore cents.

LHN clinches first management service project in Myanmar
Real estate management group LHN Group has secured its first management service project in Myanmar with a serviced residence contract in Yangon, the company announced on Thursday during the market’s midday break.  The client, Mother Construction Co, has hired LHN to renovate and provide property management and leasing services to a 13-storey property in the Mingala Taung Nyunt Township close to Yangon’s central business district. The contract size was not disclosed.

RHB Bank Singapore targets Islamic financing for hospitality assets
Fresh from snagging one of the world’s largest Islamic financing deal from Singapore-based Royal Group, RHB Bank Singapore is working on another Islamic funding transaction backed by a popular hotel chain in the city state, said an executive from the bank.  As such, the bank does not view the recent financing deal inked with real estate firm Royal Group for SO Sofitel Singapore – a five-star luxury hotel valued at S$300 million – as a “one-off transaction” in the hotel industry, said Nazmi Camalxaman, RHB Bank Singapore’s Islamic banking head, speaking to The Business Times.

Accordia Golf Trust shuts three golf courses in Japan
Accordia Golf Trust’s three golf courses in Japan have been shut amid flash flooding and landslides in western Japan.  The trust’s manager said after Thursday’s trading close that the three golf courses – Hongo Country Club, Takehara Country Club and Fukuoka Pheasant Country Club – are currently closed.

Fast Retailing posts record Q3 profit on overseas Uniqlo sales
Japan’s Fast Retailing Co on Thursday reported a record high quarterly operating profit, in a sign the owner of clothing chain Uniqlo was reaping the benefits of a push to expand its overseas sales.  The retailer, which is chasing the top spot in worldwide apparel sales, flagged its ambitions last week when tennis star Roger Federer strode onto the court at Wimbledon in Uniqlo branded whites, in a sponsorship deal reportedly worth around US$30 million annually.


Concrete jungle cements potential for developers’ profits
As famed psychologist Abraham Maslow argued, shelter is one of man’s most fundamental needs. Trying to satisfy that need for the 1.38 billion people in China is definitely no mean feat. Furthermore, the desire to upgrade and accumulate investment assets should keep demand for real estate in major global cities growing over time. Perhaps then, investing in a Chinese developer would appear to be a potentially attractive proposition.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

UK publishes Brexit plan that sparked rebellion

China softens response to fresh US tariff threats

Most US firms in China oppose tariffs: Survey

US consumer inflation keeps 6-year record in June

Asia visitors opt for private apartments over cheap five-star hotel rooms: Agoda

KL okays 3rd LRT after costs cut

South Korea says US-China trade war may hit exports of intermediary goods

Australia completes tightening of property loan standards

Canada housing prices show signs of stabilizing, reports show

Canada pension board to co-invest in China rental housing

Dutch city to unveil world’s first 3D-printed housing complex

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Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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