The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 16th November 2018

Top Stories

PM Lee confident RCEP deal can be inked in 2019
As negotiations to create the world’s largest free-trade area drag on into the new year and beyond, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said he is confident that a deal for the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) can be reached in 2019.

Asean has to work with the world as it is: PM Lee Hsien Loong
Asean has to work with the world as it is and try to maintain cohesion among its member states, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Thursday (Nov 15). Noting that “it is a reality there are tensions between the powers”, Mr Lee said he hoped that the regional grouping would not be put in a position where it would have to take sides.

Asean wants to work with both US and China, says PM Lee, as Pence calls for Indo-Pacific free of ’empires’
The Indo-Pacific has no place for “empire and aggression” US Vice-President Mike Pence told Asean leaders on Thursday (Nov 15) in a pushback against China’s growing presence in the region. Facing the 10 Asean heads of states and governments at their annual summit, Mr Pence said: “Like you, we seek an Indo-Pacific in which all nations, large and small, can prosper and thrive – secure in our sovereignty, confident in our values, and growing stronger together.

Join Asean in push for RCEP by next year, PM Lee tells India PM Modi
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Thursday (Nov 15) urged India to join Asean in a push to create the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), the world’s largest free trade area, next year. “I am glad that we have made tremendous progress this year to advance the RCEP negotiations. We are now close to the finishing line, although further work remains to finalise the remaining details,” Mr Lee said in remarks during the annual Asean-India summit, attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

‘Considerable strides’ taken towards more united, resilient and innovative ASEAN, says PM Lee
Even as “considerable strides” have been taken towards a more united, resilient and innovative ASEAN, it is just the beginning of a new and exciting chapter for the 10-member regional grouping, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said on Thursday (Nov 15).

ASEAN’s overall prospects promising, but there are challenges: PM Lee
Asean’s overall prospects are “promising” and the 10-member grouping could collectively be the world’s fourth largest economy by 2030, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said on Thursday (Nov 15). But, there are several challenges the regional bloc has to confront, he told reporters at a press conference following the close of the 33rd ASEAN Summit.

Asean Plus Three nations issue statement on combating antimicrobial resistance
With memories of the 2003 Sars outbreak still fresh, Asean and three regional partners – China, South Korea and Japan – have taken another step towards safeguarding healthcare in the area. A Statement on Cooperation Against Antimicrobial Resistance was issued on Thursday (Nov 15) in addition to other matters tabled such as a work programme on economic cooperation.

Singapore hands over Asean chairmanship to Thailand
After a decade, the symbolic gavel of the Asean chairmanship has been turned over again to Thailand from Singapore. After the handover on Thursday (Nov 15),  Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha thanked and congratulated his Singapore counterpart Lee Hsien Loong on “efficiently driving forward a resilient and innovative Asean community” and promised that Thailand will continue the good work.


Singapore Economy

Opportunities for growth abound despite tensions
The global political and economic landscape of 2018 is one characterised by the protectionist stance of the Trump administration, rising populism and festering US-China trade relations. And the global outlook for 2019 suggests that such signs might not let up just yet.

Singapore non-oil exports jump 8.3% in October
Singapore’s non-oil domestic exports (NODX) jumped 8.3 per cent in October over a year ago, extending September’s 8.1 per cent rise – thanks to an increase in non-electronic NODX which overweighed a continued dip in electronic domestic exports.

Singapore gets top accolade at Smart City Expo World Congress
Singapore has been named Smart City of 2018 at Smart City Expo World Congress held in Barcelona. Singapore was picked from seven finalists, the six others include London (United Kingdom), Melbourne (Australia), Haifa (Israel), Dijon (France), Florence (Italy) and Santiago (Chile).


Singapore Real Estate

Govt ‘can’t be hands off about the property cycle’
The government cannot take a hands-off approach to the property cycle and allow bubbles to develop, said National Development Minister Lawrence Wong as he went into the rationale behind July’s cooling measures.

Lawrence Wong, Redas chief give different takes on cooling measures
The government cannot take a hands-off approach to the property cycle and allow bubbles to develop, said National Development Minister Lawrence Wong as he explained the rationale behind July’s cooling measures at the anniversary dinner of the developers’ body on Thursday.

October new private home sales fall, rebound seen this month on new launches
New private home sales slumped month-on-month in October owing to a dearth of new launches, but analysts expect sales to rebound in November, thanks to a slew of major launches. Developers in Singapore sold 487 private homes – excluding executive condominiums (ECs) – last month, falling nearly 48 per cent from the 932 units moved in September, and 36 per cent lower than the 761 units they booked in October last year. The figures were released by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) on Thursday.

Proptech startup fills market gap with hybrid model
At some point in their lives, everybody ends up buying, selling or renting a home. But navigating the traditional process can be tedious, with long lead times and costs being racked up. Homegrown proptech startup Ohmyhome is determined to address those pain points. A few years ago, founders Rhonda and Race Wong observed the rise of consumer empowerment, where people were increasingly turning to online platforms to self-transact.


Companies’ Brief

Ascendas-Singbridge ‘mulling US$500m Reit IPO’
Ascendas-Singbridge Group is considering a Singapore real estate investment trust (Reit) listing, backed by recently acquired US office properties that could raise about US$500 million, people with knowledge of the matter said.

Keppel Infrastructure Trust inks deal for Australian group Ixom
Keppel Infrastructure Trust will pay A$777 million (S$775 million) for Australian chemicals group Ixom, in a deal inked and announced on Thursday. The agreement, which puts Ixom’s enterprise value at A$1.1 billion, comes after more than a month of speculation about a billion-dollar buyout from Blackstone-managed funds. Blackstone Group bought Ixom for A$750 million in 2014.

Deep soft skills will be needed in next decade, says DBS chief
Most people probably do not see it yet, but in the next 10 years, deep soft skills such as psychology, philosophy and emotional science will become more important, as the challenge becomes re-imagining society with artificial intelligence (AI), said DBS chief executive officer Piyush Gupta.


Views, Reviews, Forum & Others

What will happen to the experimental transitional office sites?
Transitional offices were an experimental property type minted by the authorities here about a decade ago, to quickly resolve a shortage of office space before the Global Financial Crisis. Initially, the plan was to sell sites on 10-year leases for development into transitional office projects by the private sector. In the end, these sites were sold on 15-year leases in response to feedback that most developers/investors would prefer a longer lease duration in terms of meeting tenants’ needs and recouping their investments.

Create something new than be swept away by it should be the mantra
Digital transformation is about reorienting our businesses to serve the ever-shifting needs of the customer. It requires the mastery of continuous innovation with technology and more than anything else, the courage to disrupt long-standing business models.

Singapore cleaners to get an annual bonus of at least two weeks’ pay from Jan 1
Details of a compulsory bonus to be paid to all resident cleaners in Singapore from 2020 were released on Thursday, setting out the exact quantum, timeline and scenarios that cleaners must be paid the bonuses. The update to the requirements for the progressive wage model (PWM) for cleaners states that cleaning firms must pay resident cleaners an annual bonus of at least two weeks’ pay from Jan 1, 2020.

Element AI forges partnerships with GIC, SGInnovate, SMU
Artificial intelligence (AI) software products company Element AI has separately forged strategic partnerships with GIC, SGInnovate and Singapore Management University (SMU). The partnership between Element AI and Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC will focus on the application of advanced machine learning techniques to challenging problems encountered by large asset managers. Together, they will undertake research on technology trends that can be implemented enterprise wide.

Govt policies, talent pipelines key to success: poll
Government policies and talent pipelines are key to startup success beyond the US and China, according to a latest PwC survey of more than 1,100 chief executive officers (CEOs) and industry leaders from the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec).

Private exchanges a good way for startups to rehearse for IPO
Firms can look to private exchanges for capital raising and as a way to prepare for an eventual listing, said panellists on Wednesday during the Global Investor Summit, which took place during the Singapore FinTech Festival.

Ex-minister Mah Bow Tan joins Singapore fintech firm as investor, adviser
Former cabinet minister Mah Bow Tan has joined a group of seasoned market practitioners to invest in a fintech firm. Mr Mah, who was Singapore’s minister for National Development from 1999 to 2011, had been appointed as adviser and director of the Singapore-headquartered fintech firm, HydraX.

Commentary: Full of effusive support for trade and globalisation but will China’s actions match up?
The Chinese government deserves high praise for its endorsement of globalisation and espousal of free trade at a time when more nations are becoming protectionist and concerned about the detrimental effects of globalisation.


Global Economy & Global Real Estate

Russian sovereign wealth fund courts more Singapore investors

Mexico ups interest rate, citing political uncertainty

US economy strong but could face headwinds in 2019 as Fed weighs policy: Powell

US retail sales rebound on autos, building materials

US state spending exceeds US$2t in fiscal 2018

Indonesia posts larger-than-expected trade deficit in October

APEC summit host urges respect for trade rules

Chinese regulator orders detailed user data to fight online mobilisation

Demand for new London offices to progress even as Brexit weighs: survey

Europe’s hottest building markets need workers to return

This is what’s killing Australia’s property boom

Ardern wants foreigners to invest in NZ hotels, not houses

China opens luxury hotel in quarry

China’s October home prices gather pace as smaller cities sustain growth

Smaller China cities help lift prices of new homes

China’s stay-at-home shoppers propel luxury sales: Study

HK property prices – it’s all down to location, size


Additional Articles of Interests – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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