Value of properties near LRT3 stations will rise, agents say
Owners of properties near LRT3 stations can expct to enjoy better resale and rental value once the line starts operating in 2020. Property agents said units for sale and rent in those areas were likely to see a 10% to 15% increase in prices. However, the increase would depend on several factors including the area’s popularity and economic situation in 2020. Selling properties in Shah Alam and Klang is difficult as it is far from Kuala Lumpur, but the situation is expected to change in four year’s time when the LRT3 begins operations and people can use public transportation to reach the city. The RM9 billion LRT3 project is scheduled for completion by August 31, 2020. (Malay Mail Online)

Malaysia likely to spend RM70bil on rail infrastructure
Malaysia has spent more than RM30 billion on rail infrastructure development over the past 4-5 years, and will likely spend an additional RM40 billion to enhance connectivity in the future. Most constructon companies have got a portion of the rail infrastructure development pie, which is a thriving sector in an otherwise gloomy economy. Add to that the high speed rail (HSR) project between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore, Malaysia’s rail infrastructure does not seem to be slowing down. Although there is no official figure on how much this HSR would cost, industry experts have estimated it could be in the range between RM40bil and RM45bil. All these rail developments in recent years are a boon for the construction sector in Malaysia, which is hungry to boost its orderbook as the prospects and jobs in property sector start to dim as a result of a slowing economy and weak consumer sentiment. (The Star Online)

E&O to launch RM1bil of projects in FY17
Eastern & Oriental Bhd (E&O) is set to launch nearly RM1 billion worth of projects in the current financial year (FY17), and intends to monetise its land bank to improve cash flow. The group will be rolling out the remaining phases of The Tamarind in Penang, worth RM160 million, and the Conlay Place, which has GDV of RM800mil, by this year. E&O is also planning to intensify its marketing efforts and sell existing inventory to generate positive cash flow and profit recognition. According to E&O’s annual report 2016, the group’s land bank currently spans 1,645.4 acres (665ha) across Penang, the Klang Valley and Johor. (The Edge Markets)

Eco World, Sunway among top Malaysian employers
According to the Best Employers Malaysia survey 2016, Eco World Development Group Bhd and Sunway Building Materials Group are among the best hirers in Malaysia. The survey by management consulting firm Aon Hewitt also found Eco World as the “Best of the Best Employers”. Starbucks Coffee Malaysia, a previous winner, and another developer, SP Setia Berhad, were also named in the top 10. The study used parameters such as high employee engagement, effective leadership, compelling employer brand, and a hgh performance culture to rank employers. Other special awards included Best Employer for Women (American Express (Maaysia) Sdn Bhd), and Best Employer for Gen Y (First Solar Malaysia Sdn Bhd). (Malay Mail Online)

Selangor Dredging to launch 3 property projects worth total RM1bil
Selangor Dredging Bhd (SDB) will be launching three development projects with a total GDV of RM1 billion within the next 12 months, until August 2017. The projects include two serviced apartments and an apartment project. The SQWHERE mixed development project in Sungai Buloh will be launched by year-end, while the serviced apartment in Jalan Peel, Kuala Lumpur and apartment project in Taman Melawati will be launched in the first quarter of 2017 and August 2017 respectively. Both SQWHERE and Jalan Peel projects were estimated to generate RM300mil in GDV each while the apartment project in Taman Melawati was expected to have a GDV of RM400mil. The group is also planning to expand its ‘Reside and Purchase’ (RAP) scheme to other completed projects to boost take-up rates. (The Star Online)

Titijaya Land to raise RM101mil to fund existing projects
Titijaya Land Bhd is planning to raise up to RM101.48 million to fund its existing property development projects via a renounceable rights issue. It is proposing to undertake a renounceable rights issue of up to 615 million new irredeemable convertible preference shares (ICPS), with minimum proceeds raised RM58.28 million and the maximum amount RM101.48 million. The proceeds will mainly be utilised for the H20 project in Ara Damansara, Petaling Jaya which has estimated GDV of RM750mil and gross development cost of RM510mil. (The Edge Markets)

Global Oriental more cautious about new launches
Property developer and restaurant chain operator Global Oriental Bhd (GOB) is expecting the slow property market to persist until at least 2018. The group is thus being more cautious in launching new projects under the corrent economic environment. However, GOB will still be launching projects worth over RM900 million in the current financial year (FY17). Its executive director Wee Beng Aun is optimistic that the property sentiment will be more positive by 2018, when the market recovers. (The Edge Markets)