The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 21, 22 & 23 Nov 2020 (Sat, Sun & Mon)

Singapore Economy

Singapore GDP forecast to contract 6-6.5% for 2020; rebound expected next year: MTI
Singapore’s official economic outlook has been cut again, as the gross domestic product (GDP) print for the third quarter was revised upwards by less than expected. The Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) on Monday narrowed its forecast contraction to between 6 per cent and 6.5 per cent in 2020, from 5 per cent to 7 per cent before.

Enterprise Singapore upgrades 2020 forecast for trade, non-oil domestic exports
Singapore’s authorities on Monday upgraded their full-year projection for total merchandise trade and non-oil domestic exports (NODX), as the Republic’s third-quarter total merchandise trade continued to shrink but at a slower pace.

Economic recovery in 2021 possible, but requires greater regional cooperation: PECC
While there is hope for a recovery in 2021, the risk of protectionism holds back investment in new jobs and innovation. It is thus essential for the region to respond appropriately and decisively in order to restore confidence for sustainable recovery.

Factory output, export growth tipped to boost Q3 GDP
Singapore’s economic showing in the July-to-September period will likely be upgraded from earlier flash estimates, on better-than-expected factory output and export growth. Watchers tip a year-on-year contraction of 5.5 per cent for the third quarter, according to a Bloomberg poll – better than the official advance estimate of a 7 per cent decline.

Singapore is turning the corner, but long way to go still in economic recovery: Chan Chun Sing
Singapore – While Singapore is turning the corner in its economic recovery, it still has a long way to go as it adapts to the new realities of the Covid-19 world, said Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing on Monday (Nov 23).

Chan: Closer ties between firms, Govt will aid agile regulation
A tighter partnership is needed between businesses and the Government so that regulations can be agile and adapt to changing needs and innovations, said Minister for Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing yesterday.

G-20 commits to inclusive, sustainable global recovery
While countries around the world grapple with a surge in Covid-19 infections, leaders of major economies yesterday pledged to step up efforts to safeguard lives, jobs and to widen social safety nets. Many stressed the need to ensure that the global recovery is inclusive and sustainable, and to combat climate change, as the two-day Group of 20 Riyadh summit, held virtually, came to a close.

Apec leaders vow to redouble efforts to free up trade
Leaders from 21 Asia-Pacific economies yesterday vowed to redouble efforts to free up trade across the Pacific Ocean. The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) leaders said more had to be done to foster an enabling environment for trade and investment in the region.


Companies’ Brief 

Keppel’s business units get new leaders
Keppel Corp on Monday announced a slew of leadership changes at a few of its key business units including the property, infrastructure and investment arms. Taking effect from Feb 15 next year, the changes are part of the conglomerate’s succession planning and leadership renewal.

Mizuho to cut Singapore office space on work-from-home success
Mizuho Financial Group is set to trim its Singapore office space, as the Japanese bank looks to revamp the workplace in global financial centres in the wake of the pandemic. Japan’s third-largest lender is looking to cut about 16 per cent of space – equivalent to less than one floor – at Asia Square Tower 2 in the financial district, said people with knowledge of the matter.

SPH shares soar 22% on heavy volumes on restructuring talk
As restructuring rumours swirled, shares of Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) shot up on Friday in active trading, prompting a query from the bourse operator. They kept up a rapid ascent right after the opening bell, hitting an intraday high of S$1.28 – up 22 per cent or S$0.23 from the previous close in the final hour of trading.

How disagreement about price for Sabana Reit turned its merger with ESR-Reit into a spectacle
In less than two weeks, on Dec 4, unitholders of Sabana Shari’ah Compliant Industrial Real Estate Investment Trust (Sabana Reit) and ESR-Reit will vote at their respective EGMs on a transaction over which a great deal of ink has been spilt.

Sabana Reit manager questions internalisation proposal
The proposed merger of ESR-Reit and Shari’ah Compliant Industrial Real Estate Investment Trust (Sabana Reit) is “the only offer that is currently on the table”, the Reit manager’s board said on Friday night, responding to fund managers Quarz Capital and Black Crane Capital’s call to unitholders to reject the deal and internalise the Reit’s management.


Views, Reviews, Forum & Others

Give it a shot
Chia Ngiang Hong, President, Real Estate Developers’ Association of Singapore (REDAS)

I am of the view that we should not rush to vaccinate en masse or make it compulsory until the different vaccines are proven to be safe and effective. These will take time to evaluate and establish through extensive trials.

Last-minute pause in air travel bubble will inspire trust and confidence
Putting the Singapore-Hong Kong air travel bubble on hold at the eleventh hour has no doubt caused disappointment and frustration. It was, however, a wise move that will inspire trust and confidence in the bilateral quarantine-free travel arrangement between the two Asian hubs.

Why Covid-19 vaccines face a new obstacle course
The race to find an effective vaccine appears to be on the home straight. The same cannot be said of the race to roll it out everywhere. Preparing to present a BBC radio series titled How To Vaccinate The World, I’ve been looking at the route ahead. It is less of a marathon, more of an assault course.

New app aims to shield users from scam calls, messages
A new mobile app that filters scam calls and messages to prevent them from reaching cellphone users was launched yesterday by the National Crime Prevention Council (NCPC). Known as ScamShield, the app checks incoming SMS messages and calls against a list of known scam numbers and filters them if there is a match.

Mental well-being advisory started from citizens’ panel proposals
The suggestions by a diverse group of 55 citizens, including employers, workers, housewives and retirees, led to the new tripartite advisory released last Tuesday on safeguarding the mental well-being of workers. A year ago, the Citizens’ Panel on Work-Life Harmony submitted 17 recommendations, a key one of which was that people wanted more to be done for employees’ mental well-being.

Singapore’s PDPC investigating allegations that Muslim Pro developer sold user data to US military
Bitsmedia, the Singapore-based developer of the religious app Muslim Pro, is under investigation by the Republic’s Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC) after allegations that the company sold its users’ personal data to the US military.


Update on COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019) Situation

No Covid-19 community cases in S’pore for 12th day; 12 new imported cases
Singapore had no new coronavirus cases in the community for the 12th day in a row. There were also no cases in dormitories where migrant workers stay, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said yesterday. This marks the longest stretch without a community case since the first coronavirus case was reported in Singapore on Jan 23.

Stricter SHN rules for travellers from Japan, Malaysia
From 11.59pm tomorrow, all travellers entering Singapore who have been in Malaysia in the previous 14 days must serve a 14-day stay-home notice (SHN) at dedicated facilities. This also applies to those entering Singapore to work under the Periodic Commuting Arrangement and returning Singapore-based travellers under the Singapore-Malaysia Reciprocal Green Lane.

Work passes of four revoked for breaching SHN rules
Four more foreigners have had their work passes revoked for breaching stay-home notice (SHN) requirements in the past three months, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said yesterday. They left their places of residence without valid reasons and without seeking MOM’s permission during their SHN period.

Signs of people not following SafeEntry measures strictly
Perhaps due to the low number of Covid-19 infections in Singapore nowadays, I have observed a few cases where the SafeEntry check-in/out measures were not followed strictly. At a supermarket I go to, a staff member directs customers to the contactless temperature self-check machine. However, he doesn’t even look at the temperature that is displayed. A customer with a fever could still walk in unchallenged.
*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

Lockdown is giving people a crack at extreme saving

In US, booming real estate market highlights rich-poor divide

US existing home sales rise for fifth straight month in October

Only the best London offices thrive in emerging Covid divide

Britain, Canada agree on deal to keep trading under EU terms

Australia’s Crown readies high-stakes casino tower yet pledges remain outstanding

Japan’s domestic tourism scheme partially halted as infections soar

South Korea’s third wave may be largest if spread is not contained

Hong Kong tightens measures as outbreak hits severe stage

Hong Kong’s new Covid cases raise concerns over Air Travel Bubble

Evergrande, property management unit seek HK$15.8b in IPO

Work starts on JB-S’pore rapid transit project

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