Singapore Real Estate
New private home sales double in March as buyers snap up luxe condos
Developers in Singapore sold 1,296 new private homes in March, double that of February’s 645, with buyers snapping up luxury condos after a break during Chinese New Year. Wealthy buyers are expected to continue to be in the focus as half of the new projects slated to launch this year are in the expensive core central region (CCR). Singapore is the hot favourite among well-heeled investors and wealthy overseas buyers looking for trophy properties, said Christine Sun, OrangeTee & Tie, senior vice-president, research and analytics.
S’pore property investment sales set to reach pre-pandemic levels this year
Property investment sales in Singapore are expected to return to pre-pandemic levels over the next three quarters of the year, as investor sentiments continue to improve amid economic growth and stability, said real estate consultancy Colliers in a report yesterday. Real estate investment sales rose 25.8 per cent in the first quarter of this year, posting a year-on-year increase of 47.9 per cent to $3.8 billion. This figure excludes mergers and government land sales.
URA, HDB launch Lentor Central, Tampines Street 62 GLS sites for tender
The Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) and the Housing & Development Board (HDB) on Thursday launched two sites at Lentor Central and Tampines Street 62 (Parcel A) for tender. Both sites, which have a lease period of 99 years, fall under the confirmed list in the first half 2021 government land sales (GLS) programme. Together, they can yield about 1,195 residential units, URA and HDB said in a joint press statement.
Building, marine, process sectors still struggling to get entry for workers
Employers in the construction, marine and process (CMP) sectors continue to face difficulties getting entry approvals for their work permit holders – particularly those from India and Bangladesh – with some having submitted their applications repeatedly for months, only to face rejections multiple times. Most are understanding of the current circumstances, and recognise that the government is in a catch-22 situation: bring in too many foreign workers at a go, and the country risks seeing an increase in imported Covid-19 cases.
Singapore exports blow past forecast, jumping 12.1% on low base, chip crunch in March
Singapore’s key exports extended gains in March for the fourth straight month, helped by non-electronics shipment growth and a low base for electronics. Non-oil domestic exports (NODX) surged by 12.1 per cent year on year, a pickup from the growth of 4.2 per cent in the month before. The expansion, announced on Friday by trade agency Enterprise Singapore (ESG), handily beat the median rise of 2.6 per cent estimated by private-sector analysts in a Bloomberg poll.
Pay cuts for heads of Singapore property firms
Property group City Developments’ (CDL) executive chairman Kwek Leng Beng had his total remuneration plunge 82 per cent last year. He received S$1.63 million in 2020, down from S$8.89 million in 2019. CDL recorded a full-year net loss of S$1.92 billion for 2020, reversing from a S$564.6 million profit in 2019. This was CDL’s first full-year loss since the early 1970s. Last year, CDL booked substantial impairment losses on Sincere Property Group, hotels and investment properties.
ERA Realty eyes 40% increase in revenue amid boom in property transactions
ERA Realty Network is on a roll, as it rides the momentum of the nation’s gangbuster residential market. The company, Singapore’s second largest real estate agency is gunning for 40 per cent increase in revenue to S$550 million by early next year, in line with its 40th anniversary, senior executives said in an exclusive interview with The Business Times.
Grooming younger agents paying off at ERA
The move to groom young agents at ERA Realty looks to be paying off – its top sales people are all aged under 40. Last year, the average age of the best five performing agents was 36, and their average income was S$3.12 million. Ranking No. 1 in terms of income is Kavin Kauh, aged 33, who completed 432 transactions. He is followed by Nicole Fan, 35, with 84 transactions, and Sofian Roslan, 39, with 253 transactions last year.
HK’s Shun Tak to launch debut Singapore residential project
Shun Tak Holdings’ maiden residential development in Singapore, Park Nova, could gain traction with well-heeled buyers – especially from North Asia – as the project readies for launch amid improving sentiment. Located in prime District 10, the super luxury freehold development at 18 Tomlinson Road has 54 units in the 21-storey residential tower. The units range in size from 1,432 square feet (sq ft) for a two-bedroom plus study to 5,899 sq ft for a penthouse.
Investors concerned about DBS Trustee’s decisions on EHT
Eagle Hospitality Trust (EHT) has effectively fallen under the “care” of DBS Trustee after its original manager was removed for multiple breaches of the Securities and Futures Act last year and plans to install a new manager did not succeed. Since then, corporate entities under EHT – which is a stapled group comprising Eagle Hospitality Real Estate Investment Trust (EH-Reit) and the dormant Eagle Hospitality Business Trust – have filed for bankruptcy protection in the United States, and one hotel has been sold for US$18 million.
Views, Reviews, Forum & Others
Uncertainty will be a bigger feature of Singapore’s political successions
Depending on who you talk to, the news about Mr Heng Swee Keat stepping aside as future leader of Singapore was either to be expected, or so shocking as to be seismic. Various media outlets reported it differently. Bloomberg said Mr Heng’s decision meant the People’s Action Party (PAP) faced a “suddenly unpredictable scenario” and called it “a seismic shake-up for the party.”
Cautious optimism on the economy
After three consecutive quarters of year-on-year negative growth, the Singapore economy eked out 0.2 per cent positive growth in the first quarter of this year, according to the Ministry of Trade and Industry’s advance estimates, which cover data for the first two months. But although the economy can be said to have turned the corner, the recovery remains uneven, with sectoral growth rates ranging from 7.5 per cent for manufacturing to minus 20.2 per cent for construction.
Asian investors need to prep for EU’s new ESG challenge
The European Union (EU) implemented its Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR) last month, imposing new disclosure standards on financial institutions operating within the EU. But financial market participants elsewhere in the world – including those in Asia – need to take note: the new rules are going to affect them as well, and they need to be prepared sooner rather than later.
Update on COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019) Situation
16 new coronavirus cases here, all imported
Of the 16 new imported coronavirus cases reported yesterday, 10 are work permit holders from Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines. Five of the 10 are foreign domestic workers, said the Ministry of Health (MOH). Yesterday’s new cases took Singapore’s total to 60,735. All the cases had been placed on stay-home notice (SHN) on arrival in Singapore, said MOH. There were no community cases and no cases from migrant workers’ dormitories.
Experts weigh pros and cons of vaccinating children under 16
Clinical trials are under way to approve appropriate vaccines for children under 16, the last group in the country to be offered a jab. But while experts note that children are not as likely to transmit the virus and are not a major reservoir of infections, the medical profession said that inoculating this cohort is vital for the community to achieve herd immunity. However, the kind of vaccine they will receive remains an open question.
HK set to reduce quarantine days for vaccinated visitors
From as soon as the end of this month or early next month, fully vaccinated visitors to Hong Kong will have their mandatory quaran-tine reduced by seven days. For travellers from low-risk areas including Singapore, Australia and New Zealand who have taken all required doses of the vaccine, their mandatory quarantine in designated hotels will be seven days instead of 14.
SIA, Scoot to stop flying transit passengers from Singapore to HK
Singapore Airlines and Scoot will both stop carrying transit passengers on Singapore to Hong Kong flights until further notice, due to new regulatory requirements in Hong Kong, the airlines said. In statements on Thursday night, the airlines said the move would take effect on Saturday for Singapore Airlines, and April 30 for Scoot. The dates correspond to when suspensions for the respective airlines’ passenger flights to Hong Kong lift.
*For more information, please visit the Ministry of Health (MOH) website at www.moh.gov.sg and refer to go.gov.sg/mohupdates for updates on the COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019) situation
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