The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 24th, 25th and 26th September 2016

Top Story

En bloc market stirs in 2016 as sales value doubles
With still another quarter to go before 2016 comes to an end, the value of collective sale deals in Singapore has almost doubled that in the previous year, as developers scour the en bloc space for land after the Government reduced supply in its biannual sales programme.  Two en bloc deals for residential estates Shunfu Ville and Harbour View Gardens worth a total of S$671.25 million have been completed this year, compared with just one transaction for the mixed-use development Thong Sia Building for S$380 million last year, showed data from property firm OrangeTee Research and the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA).

Singapore Economy

Two new training schemes launched for hotel industry workforce
Two new programmes are being rolled out for the hotel industry to equip employees with relevant skills and to create better matches between jobs and workers amid keener competition for manpower.  The professional conversion programme (PCP) for professional executives and the Skills Framework for Hotel and Accommodation Services (HAS), launched on Friday by the Singapore Workforce Development Agency, are in line with the government’s efforts to tackle the risk of structural unemployment.  Speaking at the launch of the programmes at Hotel Day, a career fair, Minister for Manpower Lim Swee Say said: “There is a growing concern among Singaporeans whether unemployment will continue to rise.

Consumer prices fall for 22nd straight month in August, but at slower pace
Consumer prices in Singapore continued falling in August – the 22nd straight month of decline, according to data released on Friday (Sep 23).  The consumer price index (CPI) fell 0.3 per cent last month, following a 0.7 per cent decline in July.  The smaller decline was mainly reflective of a moderation in the fall in private road transport cost, the Monetary Authority of Singapore and Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) said in a joint media release.

New hub in Jurong for trade associations
Trade associations are following the lead of start-up hot spot Block 71 and getting a hub of their own to foster greater collaboration.  The Trade Association (TA) Hub to be sited at Jurong Town Hall has already signed up 18 trade associations, including the Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCCI), the Landscape Industry Association and the Association of Process Industry.  Mr Charles Quek, president of the Association of Process Industry, told a panel discussion at the Trade Association Congress here yesterday that he hopes the hub will facilitate greater collaboration.

Private school graduates find it harder to land jobs: Poll
Even as more than 70,000 Singaporeans pursue degrees and diplomas through the private education sector, a broad-based survey released yesterday showed that many of them lagged far behind their peers from public universities in the job market.  Not only do private school graduates find it harder to land jobs but, on average, they also command noticeably lower starting salaries.  This prompted Mr Ong Ye Kung, Acting Minister for Education (Higher Education and Skills), to remind Singaporeans that one should not pursue a degree simply because it is the default pathway – as there are other options available.

Singapore Real Estate

30-ha forest to be cleared for new neighbourhood at Teacher’s Estate
To make way for a new neighbourhood in the Teacher’s Estate area, clearing work has begun at a large part of a 30-hectare secondary forest just off Yio Chu Kang Road.  Bound by Tagore Road, Upper Thomson Road, Munshi Abdullah Avenue and Yio Chu Kang Road, land preparation work will take about five years.  Currently, low hoarding of about three metres high has been put up and this could be extended to nine metres to shield residents from the dust and noise.

Changi Coast Road to be closed in 2017 due to airport works
A new road to replace Changi Coast Road will open between April and June next year to facilitate works to give the airport a third runway.  The current 6km road will then close, as Changi Airport looks to handle more flights through the development of a new passenger terminal, Terminal 5, and the extra runway, a Land Transport Authority (LTA) spokesman told The Straits Times.  Works to link the third runway to the airport’s two existing landing and take-off strips will include building a 40km network of taxiways.

Gear up for more heartland cycling facilities
Efforts to encourage people to ditch their cars and get on their bikes are being kicked into high gear.  The Land Transport Authority (LTA) yesterday announced a raft of upcoming cycling infrastructure projects in the heartland.  Among other initiatives, it is building cycling links to 12 MRT stations around the island while improving cycling infrastructure in existing cycling towns.

Sunshade dislodged at Tampines block
A concrete sunshade was partially dislodged and left balancing on the exterior of Block 201E, Tampines Street 23 yesterday morning. One end of the sunshade, on the fourth floor of the block, crashed down onto a sunshade on the floor below. While the incident was dramatic, it did not affect the structural integrity of the building, said the Building and Construction Authority. The dislodged sunshade was later removed safely by a crane, said the Tampines Town Council. Investigations are ongoing.

JTC extends deadline for notes redemption
The deadline for Jurong Country Club’s (JCC) debenture noteholders to accept JTC’s offer of an early purchase of their notes has been extended from Sept 23 to 30 days after the membership compensation has been doled out to club members.  This is to address noteholders’ anxiety stemming from a clause in the constitution that states that if the notes are sold or transferred without a simultaneous transfer of the membership, the membership will cease.

HDB racking up ideas on safer ways to dry laundry
The familiar laundry drying racks that dot Singapore’s public housing landscape may look different in time to come, as the Housing Board is considering some new designs.  The Straits Times has learnt that the HDB is reviewing its external clothes drying rack system, which can be found outside the windows of most flats here.  It put up two tenders at the end of June this year, calling for 11 types of drying systems to be made and put through wind tests.

Companies’ Brief

Lippo eyes real estate investment fund listing in Indonesia
Lippo Karawaci is looking to list a real estate investment fund (Reif) in Indonesia, coming after the listing of two real estate investment trusts (Reits) in Singapore: First Reit in 2006, and Lippo Malls Indonesia Retail Trust in 2007.  In a recent interview with The Business Times, Lippo Karawaci executive director Mark Wong said the company has filed to set up the fund, which will hold four office buildings (Menara Matahari, Menara Asia, Lippo Kuningan, and Berita Satu Plaza) and a distribution centre in Balaraja, Java, Indonesia. The fund is conservatively valued at 2.2 trillion rupiah (S$228 million).

CapLand buys prime Ho Chi Minh City site
Singapore developer CapitaLand has bought a prime site in Ho Chi Minh City for US$51.9 million, its third acquisition in Vietnam since the government relaxed rules to allow foreign investment and ownership of real estate there.  The 0.5-hectare site, acquired through its wholly owned subsidiary CapitaLand (Vietnam) Holdings, will be redeveloped into a mixed-use residential cum commercial project.  The site can potentially be developed to offer 302 units across two towers – a 17-storey residential tower and a 22-storey serviced residence tower. The 102-unit residential tower will offer a variety of two, three and four-bedroom apartments, and penthouse units. The 200-unit serviced residence will offer a range of two and three-bedroom apartments, penthouse units and amenities. The latter will be managed by CapitaLand’s serviced residence arm, The Ascott Limited under its Somerset brand. The Ascott will also offer concierge services to the residents next door.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

US State Department maintaining Iran property valued at US$50m

US incomes rise as growth in home values slow

SC Capital to Raise $1 Billion in New Fund for Asian Properties

Airbnb mobilises users to help fight its battles in New York

New tax in Vancouver turns off overseas buyers

Hong Kong chief executive pledges more land for low-income housing

Chinese investments in US set to hit new high again this year

China’s runaway housing market poses latest challenge for yuan

China may allow more bond failures with credit-default swap trading

Wanda to invest in Sony’s film unit

Uncertainty prevails as markets are hooked on easy money

EU will be harder hit by Brexit than UK: Study

Room for improvement: Matchbox apartments in Paris

Indonesia steps up quest for infrastructure funds

SMRT submits bid for Bandung public rail project

The direct-to-consumer threat to retail middlemen

Additional Articles of Interest – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Game-changing tech to shake up the built environment sector
For many lay people, modern buildings are more commonly associated with glass, steel and concrete than timber, which typically conjures up images of rustic homes and cottages. Not anymore. The ingenuity of modern building techniques and technology is creating a renaissance in the use of timber in construction, through Mass Engineered Timber (MET), in medium- to high-rise developments including residential buildings. MET boasts several advantages compared with many conventional building materials. It is manufactured from timber harvested from sustainably managed forests and is more sustainable than traditional construction materials such as concrete.

The Business Times | Monday, September 26, 2016

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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