The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 18 Sep 2020 (Fri)

Singapore Real Estate

Firms not surprised by S$10b cut in forecast for construction demand
Construction firms say they are not surprised that the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) has lowered its forecast for this year’s projected construction demand by S$10 billion, given the slow recovery in the sector since resuming operations.

Singapore shares end lower following Fed disappointment
Financial markets around the world recoiled after the US Federal Reserve said it would keep interest rates low, but failed to come up with further stimulus measures. Benchmark stock indices for Tokyo, Hong Kong, Seoul, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta ended Thursday in negative territory. Against that backdrop, Singapore stocks did not perform too poorly. The Straits Times Index closed 4.37 points or 0.17 per cent lower at 2,500.78.


Singapore Economy

Singapore tops global Smart City Index for second year
Singapore has topped the Smart City Index for the second year running, with the team behind the ranking saying that smart cities heading the list had handled the Covid-19 pandemic better. This year’s rankings took into account how 109 cities tapped technology in a lasting way to manage the coronavirus outbreak.

Electronics rebound will give lasting boost to Singapore exports: Analysts
Singapore’s non-oil domestic exports (NODX) outshone market watchers’ expectations in August, clocking year-on-year growth of 7.7 per cent. Despite the lift from a low base effect, analysts believe a rebound in the linchpin electronics manufacturing industry is under way.

CEOs of bigger Singapore firms more optimistic now: KPMG
Business leaders in Singapore have become more confident in the medium-term future of their firms and the economy, despite a bleak global outlook, showed a KPMG snapshot survey of 25 chief executive officers (CEOs) from firms with annual revenue of over US$500 million.

F&B staff crunch returns along with business pickup
As business activity picks up, the food and beverage (F&B) industry is facing a manpower crunch – an aftermath of shrinking their workforce at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic. Food outlets were among the worst hit amid circuit breaker and safe distancing measures…

Study shows local brands may face gloomier future amid virus
With more people shopping online owing to Covid-19, local retail brands could face a gloomier future, according to a recent study. For every $100 spent on local brands, only $2 was transacted online, compared with the Singapore retail average of $25 per $100.


Companies’ Brief

Will OUE Commercial Reit sell some of its assets?
OUE this week completed the sale of the landmark US Bank Tower in Los Angeles for US$430 million, or at two-thirds of its US$650 million valuation as at Dec 31, 2019. Among other things, the disposal will allow the group to substantially boost its cash reserves and improve its net gearing ratio by paring down existing debts. What else could be on the cards for OUE?

SLB Development to acquire Thye Hong Centre for S$112.5m
Property developer SLB Development said on Thursday that it has entered into a sale and purchase agreement with Thye Hong Manufacturing for the acquisition of Thye Hong Centre at 2 Leng Kee Road, a freehold six-storey industrial building for S$112.5 million, exclusive of goods and services tax.

UOB issues S$120m green loan for healthcare complex
UOB has issued a S$120 million green loan to healthcare firm The Farrer Park Company to refinance the latter’s integrated healthcare and hospitality complex, Connexion. It is the first such loan for a healthcare facility in Singapore, the companies said in a joint press statement on Thursday.


Views, Reviews, Forum & Others

Grim jobs report, but not all bad
Unsurprisingly, Singapore’s job market softened significantly between March and June – which covered most of the circuit breaker period, when a lot of economic activity came to a standstill. But the Ministry of Manpower’s second-quarter labour market report this week was not all bad news.

In climate battle, question marks hang over natural gas
In the small Australian country town of Narrabri in northern New South Wales, an intense battle is raging between the locals, the state government and a big energy company. Within weeks, the New South Wales government could approve the A$3.6 billion (S$3.57 billion) Narrabri Gas Project, which developer Santos, a major oil and gas firm, says will boost energy security in the state.


Update on COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019) Situation

18 new cases here, lowest daily figure in 6 months
There were 18 new coronavirus cases confirmed yesterday. This is the lowest daily figure since March 16, which had 17 cases. Yesterday’s new cases included one community case who is a work pass holder, said the Ministry of Health (MOH).

Covid-19 has made firms agile, hastened digitalisation: Panel
In the past, events like this week’s Singapore Summit would have gathered participants in a large venue. But due to Covid-19, the discussions continue virtually. Citing this yesterday, Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing said the coronavirus pandemic has accelerated digitalisation, and Singapore is pioneering different ways to carry on running amid disruptions.

Singapore, Switzerland co-chair global effort on access to vaccine
Singapore and Switzerland are jointly chairing a global initiative to support equitable access to a Covid-19 vaccine, Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat said yesterday. Singapore is an early supporter of the Covid-19 Vaccine Global Access (Covax) Facility, said Mr Heng in a Facebook post, and is co-chairing the Friends of the Covax Facility initiative with Switzerland, to promote vaccine multilateralism.

Public health v economy a false choice: WHO chief
The head of the World Health Organisation (WHO) has debunked arguments that countries have to choose between public health and the economy when they look at whether to ease restrictions following a lockdown.

S’pore travellers to England to be spared quarantine
London • Travellers from Singapore and Thailand have been added to England’s travel corridor list, which means they no longer have to enter quarantine on arrival in England, British transport minister Grant Shapps said via Twitter yesterday.

Experts: Containing coronavirus the best strategy
Much can – and, in fact, must – be done today to stop the spread of Covid-19, before the advent of a viable vaccine, said several experts from around the world. Speaking at the NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine’s final Covid-19 webinar last night, they raised concerns that even when an effective vaccine emerges, there will not be enough for everyone, given the limited production capacity in the world today.

Quicker diagnosis with S’pore firm’s new PCR test kit
A Covid-19 test kit which greatly reduces the time needed to diagnose a patient was launched by homegrown biotech company Veredus Laboratories yesterday. Using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing process, the VereRT Covid-19 PCR Kit makes it possible to detect the virus directly from the sample, without having to extract its viral ribonucleic acid (RNA).

Rapid Covid-19 test kits not used in Singapore as they can miss true cases
Test kits that can determine if a person has Covid-19 in minutes are not being used in national swabbing exercises as they are not sensitive enough to detect every infection. “They give false negative results – they miss true cases,” said Associate Professor Raymond Lin, director of the National Public Health Laboratory at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID).
*For more information, please visit the Ministry of Health (MOH) website at and refer to for updates on the COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019) situation


Global Economy & Global Real Estate 

London firms are dumping office space as workers stay home

When to stop working from home? How about never, workers say

US Fed to keep interest rates near zero, with eye on inflation

US dollar’s gains from post-Fed meeting fizzle out

US homebuilder optimism is fuelled by low mortgage rates

Las Vegas homebuyers are bidding up prices in collapsing economy

Manhattan condo developer may face foreclosure on 4 projects

NZ plunges into recession as economy shrinks record 12.2%

Goldman CEO renews attempts to sell his ski estate

Sydney’s new suburbs are too hot for people to live in

Japan’s Aug consumer prices fall at fastest pace in four years

Taiwan’s export boom buoyed by govt efforts to ‘smooth’ currency

Scroll to Top