Right decision by LTH to sell TRX land
Lembaga Tabung Haji’s decision to sell the land at TRX is said to be a wise decision to regain the confidence of depositors put a stop to the controversy. Last week, accusations and speculations arose when it was revealed that LTH had bought an overpriced parcel of land from 1MDB at RM188.5 mil. (10 May, The Malaysian Reserve)



MCT plans to launch REIT earliest by 2020
MCT Berhad has announced its plan to form a real estate investment trust (REIT) earliest by 2020, as part of its long-term strategy to generate a recurring income stream. The REIT would be launched once the group has built up its portfolio, when most of its investment assets, including shopping malls and hotels, are completed by 2020. (The Edge Markets)

Iskandar still attractive to investors
Johor Real Estate and Housing Developers Association (Rehda) branch chairman Hoe Mee Ling says that property in Iskandar, Johor is still attractive to developers, as investors are optimistic about the long-term economic prospects of the area. This is due to its proximity to Singapore, along with developments in economic activities and catalytic projects in tandem with the property sector. (The Star Online)

GST likened to ‘gorgeous woman’
In a poetic turn of events regarding the GST debate in the Johor state assembly, a Barisan Nasional assemblyman described GST as a gorgeous woman who is “bound to have shortcomings and others who are jealous and do not like her”. Opposition lawmakers disagreed, saying that it was best to “avoid this type of woman”, stating that the tax did not benefit those from the lower income group when basic household items and rental increased. (Asia One)

Slow pre-GST sales, rising property prices
Property sales between January and end March dropped 4.6% this year because the expected buying frenzy prior to the GST implementation on April 1 fell through partly due to quality loan vetting process and the public’s wait and see mindset despite warnings of increased prices after GST from developers. Nevertheless, prices for affordable homes and commercial properties continue to appreciate, thanks to issues of insufficient supply for certain property types and inflation. (Daily Express)


Over the weekend…

Tabung Haji Lodges Report Against Local Blog
Lembaga Tabung Haji lodged a police report against a local blog, called “The Benchmark”, for publishing documents regarding a property transaction it had carried out with 1MDB. The documents were allegedly of an agreement towards the sale of land in the Tun Razak Exchange (TRX) to LTH for RM772 mil. (7 May, The Malay Mail Online)

Onyx signs two OZO properties in Malaysia
Thailand-based Onyx Hospitality Group continues its expansion in Malaysia by signing management agreements for two projects in Iskandar, Johor. The two projects are OZO Medini hotel and Shama Medini serviced apartments that will be part of the multi-purpose UMCity Medini Lakeside complex. (9 May, Breaking Travel News)

Singaporean firms flocking to Myanmar
Singaporean investors are flocking to Myanmar to cash-in on its rapidly developing economy, where the growing ranks of middle-class residents are looking to spend their new-found wealth on a better lifestyle, which include pre-school centres, restaurants, malls, and condominiums. With a population of over 5 million and status as a commercial hub, Yangon is a popular starting point for companies. (9 May, The Malay Mail Online)