The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News 23rd November 2018

Top Stories

PAP sets stage for Heng Swee Keat to be PM
Seventeen days after the People’s Action Party (PAP) was returned to power with 69.9 per cent of the vote in the Sept 11, 2015 General Election, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong chaired a press conference to announce his new Cabinet.

Heng Swee Keat likely to be appointed PAP first assistant secretary-general, sources say
Singaporeans will get a good indication of who is most likely to succeed Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong as People’s Action Party (PAP) leader and the country’s next prime minister on Friday (Nov 23). Sources say that Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat, 57, is likely to be named the party’s first assistant secretary-general, making him Singapore’s possible fourth prime minister.


Singapore Economy

MTI: Growth to let up in 2019; Q3 GDP underwhelms
Singapore’s economic growth next year is likely to ease from the pace recorded this year, weighed down by moderating global demand for electronics and the impact of the ongoing trade war. In its first official forecast for next year, the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) on Thursday projected that the economy will grow by between 1.5 and 3.5 per cent in 2019.

Singapore exports not very exposed to trade war: MTI analysts
The world’s biggest economies are at loggerheads but Singapore’s exposure to the US-China trade war is small, an official analysis has found. Other watchers also believe that growth from exports to five key South-east Asian markets could shelter the Republic from the conflict.

NODX tipped to expand 5.5-6% in 2018
Total merchandise trade as well as non-oil domestic exports performed better than expected in the third quarter, leading the government to raise sharply its full-year growth forecasts. Total trade rose for an eighth straight quarter at 14.7 per cent over a year ago in the July-September quarter, extending the second-quarter’s 10.2 per cent jump – thanks to higher oil and non-oil trade, according to the government’s trade promotion agency Enterprise Singapore.

Failed job applications a result of skills mismatch
More than mismatches in aspects such as salary expectations, education or experience, skills mismatches are the most likely to result in an unsuccessful job application, according to a study by Ministry of Trade and Industry economists.

Salary for Singapore workers to rise 2.6% in 2019: ECA International
Pay in Singapore will rise by an average 4 per cent in 2019 but higher inflation will trim the real increase to 2.6 per cent, predicts ECA International. “Singapore employees can expect to see a real salary increase of 2.6 per cent in 2019, down from the 2.9 per cent increase that they received this year,” says ECA’s regional director for Asia, Lee Quane. “This is primarily due to the expected increase in inflation, from 1 per cent in 2018 to 1.4 per cent next year.”

Asia must redouble efforts to integrate economies: Chan Chun Sing
Countries in Asia “cannot be looking for the spoils of war” and should redouble efforts to integrate their economies, leveraging one another’s comparative advantage, Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing said on Thursday (Nov 22).

More talent and effort to grow deep tech in Singapore: Heng Swee Keat
More talent and effort is needed to grow the deep tech industry in Singapore, said Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat on Thursday (Nov 22). Mr Heng was speaking at a ceremony marking the second anniversary of SGInnovate, a company that aims to grow entrepreneurs in the sector.


Singapore Real Estate

Keller Group to exit heavy foundations business in Singapore, Malaysia
Ground engineering contractor Keller Group Plc said on Thursday it would exit its heavy foundations activities in Singapore and Malaysia and scale back in Brazil and South Africa, leading to 700 job cuts. Keller Group expects to take an exceptional restructuring charge of about £57 million (S$100.1 million) in its full-year results.


Companies’ Brief

More SGX-listed firms embark on sustainability reporting
More Singapore Exchange (SGX)-listed companies have embarked on sustainability reporting, but there is significant room for improvement in reporting, a study says. The latest Sustainability Reporting in Singapore study by the National University of Singapore (NUS) Business School’s Centre for Governance, Institutions and Organisations (CGIO) and Asean CSR Network (ACN) shows that 327 out of a total of 678 – or 48.3 per cent – mainboard- and Catalist-listed companies communicated their sustainability practices. This translates to an average level of disclosure of 55.3 percentage points as at May 31 this year.

CapBridge-backed 1exchange gets go-ahead to operate private securities exchange
Global private capital platform CapBridge has received the nod for its associated entity, CapBridge Platform, to operate a securities exchange known as 1exchange (1X), which will make it among the first regulated private securities exchanges in Singapore.

Ikea to cut 7,500 jobs by 2020 in push for e-commerce
Swedish furniture giant Ikea said on Wednesday it plans to cut 7,500 jobs worldwide by 2020, mainly office jobs, as it reorganises to focus its business on e-commerce and smaller shops in city centres. The job cuts affect almost 5 per cent of staff at Ingka Holding, Ikea’s parent group. Ikea is its biggest brand with 367 stores in 30 countries and 160,000 employees.


Views, Reviews, Forum & Others

Leadership model of continuity to apply in upcoming transition: Chan Chun Sing
The leadership model in Singapore is “one of continuity”, and this can be expected in the country’s upcoming transition at the highest ranks, said Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing on Thursday (Nov 22).

Fixed legal fees off the table for now
Proposed changes to have civil litigation costs fixed to a scale have been dramatically withdrawn – for now – following a townhall held last evening. At the session meant for lawyers to give further feedback on the cost proposals, they were instead told the news by Law Minister K Shanmugam – and greeted the decision with rounds of applause.

Machines to soup up counting at Singapore’s next polls
Voters at the next election in Singapore will be able to register electronically at polling stations, and votes will be tallied using counting machines. These initiatives will help to improve the election processes and give voters a smoother experience at polling stations, the Elections Department (ELD) said on Thursday.

Raft of programmes launched to help ICT SMEs
Businesses in the infocomm media sector are getting a leg-up from the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) in the form of initiatives designed to help them capture opportunities in the fast-growing services industry.

IMDA puts up seed funding to boost blockchain adoption
IN A bid to grow the blockchain ecosystem in Singapore, the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) is putting up seed funding for industry players to develop platforms that connect blockchain special interest groups, solution providers and other related services providers.

Temasek will explore AI, blockchain deals
Temasek Holdings Pte, Singapore’s state investment firm, is setting up new groups to explore opportunities in artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain technologies. Temasek is creating so-called “experimental pods” to focus on these two areas, which it sees as long-term trends impacting multiple industries and geographies, according to an internal memo obtained by Bloomberg. Chia Song Hwee, the chief operating officer of key management arm Temasek International Pte, will oversee the new groups.

Lime rolls out shared e-scooters at Science Park
Shared e-scooter company Lime has begun rolling out its personal mobility devices (PMDs) in Singapore, through a partnership with property developer Ascendas-Singbridge. Lime’s e-scooters are deployed at Singapore Science Park 1 and 2, the American company said in a statement yesterday.

Century-old hospital wards added to expanded Balestier heritage trail
A row of eight single-storey hospital buildings with blue roofs stand on a hill at Moulmein Road. Although they would not look out of place in a war movie, few people in Singapore even know about their existence. The National Heritage Board (NHB) is aiming to change that by including the pavilion wards as a stop on its expanded heritage trail of Balestier, which was launched on Thursday (Nov 22).

Vietnam has big plans for its bond market
Vietnam has drawn up a roadmap for its bond market, with an ambitious goal to increase the size of the sector to 45 per cent of gross domestic product – and further to 65 per cent in 2030. Its “Roadmap for Developing the Bond Market, 2017-2020 and Vision Toward 2030” sees the country revamping the market, improving procedures and enacting liberal financial sector laws.

Soft skills are not as soft as you think
We hear a lot about the looming technology skills gap in the Asia-Pacific, but a trend you may not have heard about is the rise of tech jobs requiring soft skills. LinkedIn recently released an Emerging Jobs report in several markets in the Asia-Pacific, all listing data scientists as one of the top five emerging jobs. While most of these jobs are tech-focused, a finding from the report points to the requirement for an unexpected mix of technical skills and soft skills like management and communication.


Global Economy & Global Real Estate

Global markets will return to normality in 2019: Goldman Sachs

Venezuela economy shrank 16.6% in 2017, central bank data shows: sources

UK could slide into recession if it crashes out of the EU: OECD

EU, Britain agree draft deal on future relations

New Zealand sees lowest net migration in three years in October

Japan inflation lacks momentum, keeps BOJ’s target elusive

US mortgage rates dip to lows not seen in more than a month

China evaluating impact from US proposal to boost tech export control

Golfers fear for the future of HK’s Fanling

Hong Kong Property Discounts Are the Latest Sign the Boom Is Over

Indonesia plans tax revisions to prop up sluggish property sector

Race to stand out on London’s skyline

London Home Price Cuts Seep Outwards as Sellers Get Real

Capitalist Avenue? ‘Nein danke!’ say Berlin’s Karl Marx Allee tenants

US existing-home sales rise for first time in seven months


Additional Articles of Interests – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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