The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 17th, 18th and 19th March 2018

Top Story

Non-oil exports shrink 5.9% in Feb, far below economists’ expectations of 4.8% expansion
An unexpected decline in Singapore’s exports last month surprised economists who were hoping for another month of growth amid the ongoing global economic upturn.  But it is too soon to tell if the contraction points to slowing export momentum, given that the timing of the Chinese New Year – which took place in February this year and January last year – muddied the data.

Asean, Australia to make it easier for businesses to conduct cross-border digital trade
Protectionism is a “dead end”, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said on Friday, as he and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong made a strong push for countries to continue working together on free trade.

Businesses must train workers for the future: Temasek CEO
Temasek Holdings chief executive officer Ho Ching and Greater Sydney Commissioner Lucy Turnbull both called on businesses to train their workers for the future, promote gender equality and embrace sustainability.  They said this at the start of an Asean-Australia business summit on Friday in Sydney.

Strong start to 2018 with Singapore firms raising US$816.9m in equity capital markets
Singapore-based companies have raised US$816.9 million through equity capital markets (ECM) for 2018 to date, the strongest start to a year since 2013, according to Thomson Reuters’ preliminary first-quarter review of Singapore ECMs on Friday.

Singdollar bond market gets a booster
The collective sale fever last year could kick some life back into the lacklustre Singdollar bond market, say experts.  The market, which has been hit by interest rate volatility, continues to be choppy but strong issuers such as the Land Transport Authority (LTA) will be well-received, said Mr Clifford Lee, DBS Bank head of fixed income.

Economists split on MAS tightening: Survey
Economists are split on whether the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) will change its policy stance in April amid subdued inflation pressure.  Four of seven economists see the central bank shifting to a tightening stance next month, according to a Bloomberg survey conducted from March 13 to 16.

Singapore Economy

Tenders launched for parcels at Mattar Road, Silat Avenue
Singapore’s Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) has launched two residential sites at Mattar Road and Silat Avenue for sale by public tender under the confirmed list of the first half 2018 Government Land Sales (GLS) programme.  The land parcel at Mattar Road, which is under a 99-year lease, has a site area of 6,230.2 square metres with a maximum gross floor area (GFA) of 18,691 sq m. It can yield an estimated 250 units.

En-bloc fever may be cooling
Engineer Andy Goh has stopped saying hello to some neighbours in his condominium.  The mood in the 596-apartment Cashew Heights complex is “tense and stressed” after an initiative late last year to offer it for collective sale to a property developer, said the 49-year-old.  A firm opponent of the deal, worth at least S$1.88 billion, he feels outnumbered by owners who want to cash out. Recalling a meeting in his condominium last month, Mr Goh, who worries the sale price won’t allow him to buy a new home of comparable size, said his dissenting voice was drowned out by the other owners.

Bukit Sembawang Estates secures Katong Park Towers for S$345m
Bukit Sembawang Estates has successfully tendered for the en bloc sale of Katong Park Towers at a price tag of S$345 million -20 per cent above its reserve price of S$288 million, marketer Cushfield & Wakefield said on Friday.  This translates to a land rate of S$1,280 per sq ft per plot ratio up to the development baseline, taking into account an estimated S$60 million for the lease upgrading premium.

Singapore Real Estate

CBRE plans ‘living lab’ for new tech at Paya Lebar showcase
CBRE is relocating its main Singapore office to Paya Lebar Quarter (PLQ) in the middle of next year, and hopes to turn the new office into a “living lab” or a showcase for new proprietary technologies.  The new office spanning over 30,000 square feet at PLQ will bring together its operations currently at three different locations, including a prime CBD address at 6 Battery Road.

Keppel Land consolidates ownership of Saigon Sports City
Keppel Corp on Sunday said that it has through Keppel Land’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Oil (Asia) Pte Ltd, acquired the remaining 10 per cent stake in Jencity Limited, which holds Saigon Sports City, for about US$11.4 million.  It bought the stake from Jenclub Limited. Following the acquisition, Keppel Land will hold a 100 per cent interest in Saigon Sports City, thus consolidating its full ownership of the township.

Oxley to raise S$78.1m from placement of 156.8m new shares
Oxley Holdings on Thursday entered into a placement agreement for the issue of 156.8 million new shares at S$0.51 apiece to raise S$78.1 million.  The issue price represents a discount of about 8.8 per cent to the volume-weighted average price of S$0.559 for trades done on the Singapore Exchange (SGX) on March 14, it said in a filing with the SGX on Friday morning.


HDB will review policies to ensure stable public housing market
We refer to the commentary by Mr Ku Swee Yong (Prepare for supply avalanche as ageing HDB flat owners die; March 5) and the letters by Dr Thomas Lee Hock Seng and Mr Teo Kueh Liang (Glut of HDB resale flats may not materialise, and Policy tweaks can prevent supply avalanche; both published on March 7).

Airbnb rules, Singapore-style
Nearly two years ago, I wrote a column in this space on the Urban Redevelopment Authority’s (URA) move to postpone its decision on short-term home rentals.  The URA had said in May 2016 that it needed more time to review the issue.

Condos struggle to stop illegal rentals
Illegal short-term rentals are a gold mine for recalcitrant home owners but a bugbear for residents dealing with disruptive holidaymakers.  A battle is ongoing between errant subletters and condominium managers, who are trying their best to prevent illicit stays but are limited in their enforcement action.

First to get PUB’s smart shower device
Some residents of the upcoming West Rock@Bukit Batok estate will be able to keep tabs on how much water they use in the shower.  The Housing Board (HDB) project, which will be completed later this year, will have 300 of its units fitted with smart shower devices that track water consumption.

Turtle museum gets lease extension
The lease for the Live Turtle & Tortoise Museum, which is due to be evicted from the Chinese Garden at the end of this month, will be extended, owner Connie Tan has told The Sunday Times.  She said in a post on the museum’s Facebook page that the National Parks Board (NParks) had agreed to extend the lease.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

Brexit bankers may find home in Luxembourg’s red-light district

Asian business not affected by closures in US: Toys ‘R’ Us

HK mulls over tax on unsold apartments to unlock supply

Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka-shing retires

Victor Li finally completes decades-long apprenticeship

Can 3D-printed houses provide cheap and safe homes for the world’s poor?

Zara, H&M button up to face Internet threat

Additional Articles of Interests – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Articl

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