New public housing, healthcare schemes to tackle concerns
New and expanded schemes to upgrade and redevelop public housing are in the works, as well as further healthcare subsidies, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong announced in his National Day Rally speech on Sunday. Acknowledging that Singaporeans are feeling “cost of living pressures”, he noted that housing, healthcare and education are three major expenditure items – and thus three areas that the government is very focused on.
Early redevelopment scheme ‘gives owners of ageing flats viable exit option’
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s announcement of the Voluntary Early Redevelopment Scheme (Vers) on Sunday will provide home owners of ageing flats with a viable exit option, consultants believe. The announcement comes after the government last year cautioned home buyers not to assume that all old public housing flats will be automatically eligible for the Selective En bloc Redevelopment Scheme (Sers) – a scheme where the government buys back blocks of old flats from residents and gives them compensation and rehousing benefits.
Freehold HDB leases would be ‘socially divisive’: PM Lee
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong addressed the issue of Housing and Development Board (HDB) flat leases at Sunday’s National Day Rally, saying that their 99 year leases is in fact “a very long time” and very few of today’s public housing owners would outlive their leases. The HDB estimates that less than 2 per cent of households, including those who have bought resale flats, will face the situation of owners outliving their leases.
Pharma holds up July exports but trade war a threat
The seasonally volatile pharmaceutical sector supported Singapore’s non-oil domestic exports (NODX) in July, but economists warned that a US-China trade war could soon bite. NODX grew by 11.8 per cent year on year in July, up from 0.8 per cent the month before, according to data from Enterprise Singapore on Friday. The showing beat a market consensus forecast of 7.4 per cent growth.
Upcoming GST hike: ‘Businesses should focus on value, not just price’
The impending goods and services tax (GST) hike is any time between three and seven years away, but it pays for businesses to start thinking about it now, said Jochen Krauss, managing partner at global pricing consultancy Simon-Kucher. The uncertainty of the start date – while challenging – also creates opportunities for companies if they plan ahead, he added
Frasers Property’s Thai unit issues 2 debenture offerings totalling 3.5b baht
Frasers Property said on Friday that its subsidiary, Frasers Property Holdings (Thailand), has issued two more offerings under its 25 billion Thai baht (S$1.03 billion) debenture programme on Aug 17. In a filing to the Singapore Exchange, Frasers said that under the programme, Frasers Property Holdings (Thailand) issued 2.3 billion baht in aggregate principal amount of 3.02 per cent debentures due 2022, and 1.2 billion baht in aggregate principal amount of 3.88 per cent debentures due 2028.
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Overall industrial prices remain stable
The industrial segment is still not out of the woods, given the fragile economic outlook in the light of fresh developments in the United States-China trade war, although green shoots of recovery have started to appear in some segments. Rents of multiple-user factories, for instance, rose 0.2 per cent from the first to the second quarter, the first quarter-on-quarter increase since the first three months of 2015.
Even older flats can generate good returns
The concept of having leasehold ownership is a well-practised one in many parts of the developed world (Outdated ideas on home ownership and land shortage are crippling us; Aug 14). A 99-year lease allows the property to be used for more than one generation.
Worries over sky-high prices
It sounds like a rosy picture on the housing front: Housing Board resale prices have come down 11.8 per cent since their peak five years ago. And it is also cheaper to live under that roof, compared with five years ago.
Commentary: Many ways to make a house a home but no easy fixes to housing vulnerable families
Singapore: Recently, there has been much discussion on how to help the vulnerable, particularly those living in public rental flats. Many have offered their views on what it means to have a home in Singapore and how we can help lower-income families put a better roof over their heads. It is heartening to see that there is no lack of passionate champions for the vulnerable.
Help preserve 114-year heritage of Keppel Club
It saddens me to learn that there will be no extension to Keppel Club’s lease as the Government has redevelopment plans for the site (Keppel Club cuts monthly fee to $1; June 21). How many 114-year-old heritage establishments can Singapore boast of having?
Homework helps him buy his home sweet home
ERA group division director Dennis Chee learnt the importance of saving for a rainy day when he was pursuing his degree in Bachelor of Engineering (Electrical) at the Queensland University of Technology in Australia. In 2003, his father was retrenched while working as a technician supervisor.
1- and 2-room HDB households in North East District to get vouchers for free LED lights
Singapore: All households living in one- and two-room Housing and Development Board (HDB) flats in the North East District will receive a S$25 voucher to buy LED lights, in a bid to encourage these households to use more energy-efficient lights. The National Environment Agency (NEA) and North East Community Development Council (CDC) announced this initiative on Saturday (Aug 18), at the launch of the “Switch and Save – Use LED” @ North East programme.
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