The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 27 April 2021 (Tue)

Singapore Real Estate

En bloc punts in play, but price gap threatens to spoil the party
More properties could soon be put up for sale en bloc, as unit owners hope to cash in on resilient real estate prices in Singapore and developers’ growing appetite for land. But consultants are seeing “a mismatch in price expectations”. That means deals might be slow to close or fall through entirely. Given this, potential buyers flocking to the collective-sale market should take pause. Residential, commercial and mixed-use projects across Singapore are at varying stages of the pre-launch process.

As en-bloc market heats up, agency space gets more crowded
Competition is stiffening among marketing agencies in Singapore’s collective-sale scene, with both incumbents and newcomers eager to grab a piece of the action amid renewed buying and selling interest. Fresh faces joining the crowded arena have, at times, pushed into the scene by undercutting rivals on the commission rates or terms of appointment. That has also meant them proposing “unrealistically” high reserve prices as they vie for jobs, agents told The Business Times (BT). Promising fatter margins for sellers is one way agents may try to clinch appointments.

With red-carpet treatment, Singapore hotels may just nip through this crisis
Eyes will once again be on the Singapore-Hong Kong air travel bubble, with it now expected to start on May 26. After a few false starts, hope still remains that the roll-out of travel bubbles – whether with Hong Kong, New Zealand, Australia or Taiwan – could soon pave the way for higher international visitor arrivals here. The holy grail for the domestic lodging industry remains the return of international visitors. And certain segments of the lodging trade, such as serviced residences and luxury hotels, could outperform when international visitors return.

Cambodian-Chinese pair pays S$33.5 million for Hilltops penthouse
SC Global Developments has sold another penthouse at its Hilltops condo in Cairnhill Circle, this time for S$33.5 million or S$3,995 per square foot on a strata area of 8,385 square feet. It is being bought by Chen Liangbin, a Cambodian citizen, and Li Xiaoping, a citizen of China, BT understands. The unit has five bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms, inclusive of the master suite which comes with a jacuzzi tub and walk-in closet. It also has a large balcony off the living area with views of the city and Marina Bay area.

Higher success rate for property auctions in Q1 as investors chase yields: Knight Frank
The first quarter of this year saw seven properties sold under the hammer at a gross sales value of S$13 million, out of a total 201 auction listings in Singapore. This success rate of 3.5 per cent, based on auction listings, surpassed pre-Covid levels in 2019, when quarterly success rates had hovered between 1 per cent and 3 per cent, Knight Frank Singapore noted in a research report published on Monday.

Flexibility with China hires and more time among measures to help construction firms
Construction firms will get temporary flexibility in recruiting workers from China; an additional 49-day extension of time for eligible public sector construction contracts; and quicker payouts from the public sector under cost-sharing arrangements, in the first wave of additional measures to support the industry, the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) said on Monday.

Device helps trace Covid-19 close contacts at construction sites, buzz workers who are too close
Singapore – If a worker is found to be infected with the coronavirus at a construction site, the entire worksite may have to be shut to contain the spread of the virus. But with a contact tracing device for workers, it might not be necessary to close the entire site because people who had close contact with the infected worker can quickly be identified and separated from other healthy workers.


Singapore Economy

IP protection, supply chain resilience key to Singapore’s appeal: Chan Chun Sing
In the 55 years that multinational corporation 3M has been operating in Singapore, it has invested over S$1 billion and grown its staff from the initial eight employees to the staggering 1,600 plus it hires today across its three sites. Employees were drafted to fill positions in manufacturing, research and development or even sales or legal, said Kevin McGuigan, managing director of 3M South-east Asia region and country leader of Singapore.

IP protection and supply chain resilience are key to Singapore’s attractiveness: Chan Chun Sing
Singapore’s ability to protect intellectual property and assure multinational companies of supply chain resilience are key factors that draw companies to locate here, said Minister for Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing during his visit to 3M Singapore on Monday. Singapore-based manufacturers and distribution centres were able to continue exporting essential products and medical supplies to the global market despite the pandemic because the country was able to remain open and connected, Mr Chan said.

Analysts quadruple Singapore’s Q1 growth estimate to 0.9% as factories maintain steam
A strong showing by Singapore’s factory sector in March could see economic growth bumped up in the first quarter from early data estimates. Ravenous global demand for semiconductors continued to fuel the electronics and precision engineering clusters. And the ongoing winning streak in chemicals makes it another cluster to watch, analysts added. All in all, factory output increased by 7.6 per cent year-on-year in March, in its fifth month of expansion, Economic Development Board (EDB) data released on Monday showed.

S’pore factory output up 7.6% in March
Singapore’s factory output expanded for the fifth straight month in March, data released yesterday by the Economic Development Board (EDB) show. Manufacturing production last month increased 7.6 per cent from a year ago, though on a seasonally adjusted month-on-month basis, output decreased 1.7 per cent. Excluding biomedical manufacturing, March output grew 14.9 per cent year on year but fell 3.2 per cent month on month.


Companies’ Brief

CICT’s Q1 net property income surges 66% post merger
CapitaLand Integrated Commercial Trust (CICT) posted gross revenue of S$334.8 million for the first quarter ended March 31, 2021. Net property income (NPI) for the quarter rose 66 per cent to S$247.1 million. For the corresponding quarter in 2020, CICT – which was then known as CapitaLand Mall Trust (CMT) – reported gross revenue of S$204.3 million and NPI of S$148.3 million.

Starhill Global Reit’s Q3 revenue down 0.6% year-on-year
In a business update on Monday, Starhill Global Real Estate Investment Trust (SGReit) posted a 0.6 per cent year-on-year (y-o-y) dip in revenue to S$46.4 million for its third quarter ended March 31. Net property income (NPI) rose 0.6 per cent y-o-y to S$35.4 million. Of the stable NPI for the quarter, the Reit manager said this was mainly due to lower rental assistance to tenants affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, lower operating expenses and the appreciation of Australian dollars.


Views, Reviews, Forum & Others

Rising confidence in job market over the past year
Perceptions of the overall job market have improved significantly over the past year, even as Singaporeans’ confidence in their own job security has remained largely the same, a report by the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS) released yesterday has found. Last month, 42 per cent of respondents believed the Singapore job market would be bad for the next six months, compared with 80 per cent of those surveyed last May. Over the same period, those who felt the job market would get better increased from 13 per cent to 32 per cent.

Update on COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019) Situation

Westlite Woodlands dorm resident staying in different block from earlier cases among 2 local Covid-19 cases
A Bangladeshi worker staying in a different block at Westlite Woodlands dormitory from two earlier Covid-19 cases was one of the two locally transmitted cases announced on Monday. The 35-year-old construction worker employed by Jenta Decoration Contractor did not interact with the other Bangladeshi worker and his roommate at the dormitory who tested positive for Covid-19 last week. He does not typically interact with clients, MOH added.

Ong: Ban on visitors from India not aimed at any nationality
The move by Singapore to ban travellers with recent travel history to India is not targeted at any nationality, but is aimed at addressing the risk posed by a place with a high incidence of Covid-19 infections, Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung said yesterday. A traveller who has left India but stayed in another country before flying to Singapore would not have the same level of risk as someone who came directly from India, he said during a news conference announcing the Singapore-Hong Kong air travel bubble.

Singapore-HK bubble has limited impact, but is worth pursuing: analysts
The long-awaited “air travel bubble” (ATB) between Singapore and Hong Kong will have limited impact on the aviation industry if it can even be pulled off, say analysts. But it is a symbolic step on the road to normalcy. For one, the target launch date of May 26 depends on both cities keeping a tight lid on Covid-19 in the month ahead. Even if the launch takes off as planned, a fresh outbreak could lead to a suspension – as with how New Zealand partially paused its ATB with Australia on April 23, just days after it began on April 18.

67% in study willing to take Covid-19 vaccine, while 20% are neutral
Two in three Singaporeans are willing to take the Covid-19 vaccine if it were offered to them, with another one in five neutral about it. However, about half the population still has concerns about the vaccine’s safety and potential side effects, as well as its efficacy. Among the population, youn-ger Singaporeans are more likely to be concerned about vaccine safety than those who are older, according to research released yesterday by the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS).

S’pore residents have adapted well to pandemic: Study
Over the past year, Singapore residents have better learnt to cope with the pandemic on various fronts, even as many remain cautious over their livelihoods, the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS) has found in a new paper. And societal trust – the “social glue” that builds strong communal bonds and improves psychological well-being – has played a key role in helping the country adapt to the new normal, researchers said.

*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


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