The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 3rd, 4th and 5th December 2016

Top Story

Singapore must stay open, even if others turn inward: PM Lee
There is a worrying trend of developed countries around the world turning inward and adopting a more protectionist stance, and this will have significant consequences for small and open countries like Singapore.  Speaking at the People’s Action Party’s (PAP) biennial conference on Sunday, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong noted how people in many developed countries are feeling a profound sense of discontent and angst.  He cited the examples of two major events this year: the UK’s decision in June to leave the European Union; and the US presidential election in November.

Singapore Economy

MOF calls for public feedback on Budget 2017
The Ministry of Finance (MOF) is seeking views and suggestions from Singaporeans in preparation for Budget 2017, it said on Sunday.  “Individuals, households, and businesses are welcome to provide feedback on issues such as how we can best develop Singaporeans, support families, and help local companies grow through innovation and internationalisation,” it said.  From today, Singaporeans can visit the Reach Pre-Budget 2017 microsite to submit their views online. The feedback exercise closes on Friday, Jan 13, 2017.

Co-working space to ease Singapore SMEs into China
Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Singapore will soon find it easier to break into China.  International Enterprise Singapore (IE Singapore), CapitaLand and UrWork signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on Friday to facilitate this amid the growing trend of the sharing economy.  This tripartite agreement, the first-of-its-kind among a trade agency, Asia’s largest real estate company headquartered and listed in Singapore and China’s leading co-working space operator, promised to smoothen the market entry process for SMEs.

Manufacturing outlook a bit brighter
Singapore’s manufacturing sector appears to be gradually picking up again after a long period of sliding production.  Factory output grew for the third straight month in November, after more than a year of contraction.  The Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) – an early indicator of manufacturing activity – came in at 50.2 last month, up slightly from 50 in October. A reading of 50 and above indicates expansion.

Winter spells good investing season for VCs: GGV Capital partner
The days of heady valuations for start-ups in China are over, as the venture-capital (VC) market hunkers down for the winter cycle, when capitalists typically hit the brakes on funding.  But GGV Capital’s Shanghai-based managing partner Jenny Lee, playing the contrarian, believes this could well be a good season for venture capitalists to deploy their dry powder.

Singapore Real Estate

Foreign investments in Singapore property at nine-year high
Mega office deals helped drive foreign investment in local real estate to its highest level since 2007.  About $8.85 billion from overseas has been pumped into Singapore property so far this year – the best result since the $15.27 billion outlay in 2007, before the global financial crisis hit.  Analysts say the pace of foreign investment could well carry over into next year, depending on how the economy fares.

Grim Q3 for industrial property sector
Industrial property prices and rents fell in the third quarter on the back of a slowing economy.  Among the hardest hit were units on 30- and 60-year leases, which saw prices hitting record lows in the three months to Sept 30, said consultancy Savills Singapore.  “Unless global trade is reinvigorated and the new economy, like e-commerce, expands aggressively here, in the near term, the industrial and warehouse market appears to be running on empty,” said Mr Alan Cheong, its research head.

White House Park GCB sells for S$25.5m or S$1,686 psf based on 15,125 sq ft land area
Two freehold Good Class Bungalow (GCB) transactions in District 10 are in motion – one on White House Park near the Botanic Gardens and the other tucked away on Ewart Park off Holland Road.  The bungalow on White House Park is being sold at S$25.5 million, which translates to S$1,686 per square foot based on the land area of 15,125 square feet.

‘Smart crane’ for precast building
With the help of microchips, cameras and satellite tracking, massive tower cranes could somedaybecontrolled remotely, instead of from a cabin high above the ground.  To do this, a computer program calculates the optimal lifting path and a smart camera lets the crane operator see exactly what he is doing. With Global Positioning System (GPS) tracking, he can also see how well he matches the suggested path.

Tampines HDB shops launch free Wi-Fi
The bakery at the foot of the block may not be where you usually surf the Internet and shop online.  But that is the idea in Tampines Street 21, where small businesses have decided not to play second fiddle anymore to their heavyweight competition.  The heartland shopping neighbourhood officially went online yesterday when the Tampines Merchant Association (TMA) launched a free Wi-Fi network for business owners and customers.

Crane topples sideways in Siglap, 2 houses damaged
A loud crash startled residents and workers in Siglap yesterday morning as a crane toppled sideways at a construction site, damaging the roofs and a wall of two neighbouring houses.  “I thought I was dreaming when I saw what happened,” said Ms Kerstin Dahl, an expatriate living across the road from the site. She felt lucky that the crane had not toppled in the direction of her house.  The 57-year-old was preparing to leave the house when she heard the bang around 10.40am.

Sunshade dislodged at Tampines block had no rebars
A sunshade that partially dislodged from a Tampines HDB block in September had no reinforcement bars (rebars) on the side that fell, the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) said yesterday.  However, investigations by a professional engineer have shown that the existing sunshades at Block 201E, Tampines Street 23, and surrounding HDB blocks are safe, BCA said.

Companies’ Brief

Timing and price key in buying Seletar Mall: SPH Reit
SPH Reit, a real estate investment trust sponsored by media group Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), is interested in adding The Seletar Mall to its portfolio, but time and price are two determining factors.  The Reit’s chairman Leong Horn Kee shared this on Friday in response to questions from shareholders who wondered if the Reit would purchase The Seletar Mall as it looked to grow the business.

New chief executive to take over at ARA Trust Management from Jan 1
As part of succession plans, Yeo See Kiat will be retiring as chief executive and executive director of ARA Trust Management while Chan Kong Leong will take over both roles from Jan 1 next year. ARA Trust Management is the manager of Suntec Real Estate Investment Trust.  John Lim, ARA group CEO, said: “Despite the global financial crisis and the challenging market conditions, Suntec Reit has grown from strength to strength under See Kiat’s leadership.

Franklin Templeton to vote in favour of ARA’s privatisation bid
Franklin Templeton Institutional, which owns about 10 per cent of ARA Asset Management, will vote in favour of the S$1.78 billion privatisation, ARA said on Monday.  ARA in November announced a privatisation bid by a consortium led by its group founder and chief executive officer, John Lim. The consortium, which includes Cheung Kong Property and The Straits Trading Company, wants to take the group private at S$1.78 a share.

Views, Reviews & Forum

Live and let live in estate matters
Most condominium residents have their own interests at heart and, therefore, there are bound to be conflicts with either their neighbours or the management council (“Subsidiary proprietors should ensure proxies act in their interest” by the Building and Construction Authority; Nov 29).  The best solution is to educate residents on the maxim “live and let live”, and on their rights as an owner and also the work of the council, especially during annual general meetings.  We must not forget that those who come forward to serve in the council are all volunteers and are not paid a salary. They do it out of passion and a love for their estate.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

Downside of Lower Manhattan’s boom: It’s just too crowded

S&P sees US$12b of loans defaulting in 2017

Creating experiences with a sense of urgency, excitement

China capital outflows seen continuing into 2017

No price like home: Big spenders reappear in China

Foreseeable currency drivers for 2017

Vancouver housing tax pushes Chinese to US$1m Seattle homes

Houses too pricey? Data shows Aussies shouldn’t blame foreigners

Iceland rebounds, mainly on tourism explosion

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Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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