The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 28th August 2018

Singapore Economy

New moves linking Singapore firms to China, Asean
A platform connecting corporates with technology startups and a private-sector committee to help Singapore firms tap infrastructure opportunities are among the initiatives being launched at the two-day FutureChina Global Forum and Singapore Regional Business Forum, which began on Monday.  The forum combines the flagship events of Business China and the Singapore Business Federation (SBF) respectively, for the first time.

Singapore firms ranked 2nd in Asean for transparency on anti-corruption policy
South-east Asia’s biggest listed companies have improved over the past two years in their transparency about anti-corruption practices, according to a study out on Monday.  Public firms in five key Asean markets scored 56 per cent on average, up from 45 per cent previously, in a ranking of the 50 largest companies listed in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand.

Services sector takings up 7.8% in Q2
Business receipts for the services sector were lifted in the second quarter by the information and communications services industry, Department of Statistics Singapore data showed yesterday.  Services takings were up by 7.8 per cent year on year, easing slightly from the 8.6 per cent growth in the first quarter, with revenue up in all industries, except recreation and personal services.

China Taiping to boost Singapore-China business links
China Taiping Insurance Group (CTIG), one of four state-owned insurance groups directly managed by China’s central government, will work with Enterprise Singapore to promote greater collaboration between Singapore and Chinese companies on regional infrastructure projects under the Belt and Road Initiative.  The insurer also announced on Monday at its 80th anniversary celebrations at the St Regis hotel that both parties will work together on CTIG’s Singapore Innovation Lab to explore fintech and innovation opportunities in the region.

Singapore Real Estate

Flat buyers using CPF can keep up to S$20,000 in Ordinary Account when taking HDB loan
Flat buyers now have more flexibility in using their CPF money, the Housing and Development Board (HDB) said as it launched 5,101 flats on sale from Tuesday.  Buyers can now keep up to S$20,000 in their CPF Ordinary Accounts (OA) when they take a HDB loan. Before, they had to use all the funds in their OA first.

Pasir Ris white site up for sale by public tender
A white site at Pasir Ris Central, spanning 3.8 hectares, was launched for sale off the government land sales (GLS) confirmed list in a dual-envelope public tender on Monday.  The 99-year leasehold site went on the market with the Housing & Development Board (HDB) calling for a mixed-use commercial and residential development, as part of its “Remaking Our Heartland” plan to rejuvenate Pasir Ris Town.

Adjoining Smith St shophouses put on market for at least S$33m
A freehold cluster of three adjoining conservation shophouses on Smith Street has been launched for sale via public tender.  The guide price for the property is about S$3,500 per square foot, or S$33.25 million on a built-up area of about 9,500 sq ft, which reflects a gross yield of close to 2 per cent, according to Savills Singapore, the marketing agent for the property.

Riverfront Residences sales volume lower than previously announced: KSH Holdings
The actual number of Riverfront Residences units sold is lower than previously announced, one of the project developers has said.  The former Rio Casa estate in Hougang has moved “more than 45 per cent” of its 1,472 homes – which works out to at least 662 units – and not 52 per cent, or about 765 homes, as disclosed on Aug 24.

Experts see good take-up rate for new seafront flats in Punggol
HDB flats in the new Punggol Point District with waterfront views could fetch 5 per cent to 10 per cent more than units that do not overlook the sea, property analysts said yesterday.  But they added that buyers will still be mainly focused on factors such as the apartment’s proximity to transport nodes and amenities.

New green building to help SMU students with hands-on learning and connect better
Students at the Singapore Management University (SMU) will soon have more opportunities to network with start-up founders and mentors, and to work on real-world projects from organisations and companies.  Construction of an environmentally-friendly building along Stamford Road to facilitate such meetings and hands-on learning began on Monday morning, with works expected to be completed by the end of 2019.

Nanyang Business School to be housed in Asia’s biggest wooden building
Nanyang Technological University (NTU) has unveiled an ambitious five-year plan, under which Asia’s largest wooden building – to be the new home for the Nanyang Business School – will be built on its campus.  University president Subra Suresh, in unveiling what he called “moonshot” projects to propel NTU’s next phase of growth, also announced a drive to hire hundreds of staff.

Companies’ Brief

CapitaLand sells 70% stake in Westgate to CMT for S$789.6m
As part of its capital recycling exercise, property developer CapitaLand on Monday said that it has agreed to sell to CapitaLand Mall Trust (CMT) its 70 per cent stake in Westgate – the retail component of an integrated retail and office development in Jurong – for S$789.6 million.  This values a full 100-per-cent stake in the development at S$1.128 billion, and translates to S$2,746 per square foot (psf).

GuocoLand hires Lafarge Malaysia’s Lim Yoke Tuan as new CFO
GuocoLand has hired Lim Yoke Tuan from Lafarge Malaysia to replace Lai Tak Loi as its chief financial officer (CFO), according to a filing with the Singapore Exchange on Monday during the mid-day trading break.  Mr Lim, who was CFO of Lafarge Malaysia from October 2014 to July 2018, begins immediately, said GuocoLand, a property developer. Before Lafarge, Mr Lim also held CFO positions at The Lion Group, CP Lotus Corp and Sun Hung Kai Properties Group.


The Big Read: HDB lease decay — Govt’s solutions ‘not perfect’, but there’s light at the end of the tunnel
Singapore: When Mr Alan Ng, 50, moved from Ang Mo Kio to Marine Parade four years ago, he was hoping it would be a form of investment.  But Mr Ng, whose estate will be among the first in Singapore to reach lease expiry in less than six decades, was among many Housing and Development Board (HDB) owners who got jittery when the Government made clear last year that not all old flats will be automatically eligible for the Selective En bloc Redevelopment Scheme (Sers), and their prices will come down as their leases dwindle.

Land policy does not favour the rich
The debate over terminology such as “lessee” or “owner” is largely academic and is much ado about nothing.  I recently watched a documentary from Hong Kong which examined why Singapore has been successful in housing its population while people in Hong Kong are facing so many problems.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

LaSalle Hotel is reconsidering its planned takeover by Blackstone

Londoners driven out as home prices remain out of reach

Britons are dipping into pensions to help children buy houses

BRI to be based on spirit of cooperation and mutual benefit: Xi

China’s industrial profit growth cools for 3rd straight month

How a Family Turned a Barren Hillside Into a $4.4 Billion Property Empire

Mahathir bans foreigners from buying Forest City project

Australia’s Victoria state in A$2.86b land title register deal

Additional Articles of Interests – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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