Noh Omar: RM370mil allocation in Budget 2017 for improving people’s wellbeing
The RM370 million allocation for the Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Ministry in Budget 2017 will be the catalyst for the Urban Wellbeing Master Plan (PIKRB) which will be implemented next year. According to minister Tan Sri Noh Omar, RM300 million out of that amount would be used for the needs of the people at People’s Housing Projects. Of the remaining RM70 million, RM40 million will be for residents associations, RM20 million for upkeep of infrastructure and amenities at people’s housing projects and RM10 million for Azam Bandar, a programme to uplift the economy of urban people. Noh added that his minsitry would work closely with the Malaysian Global Innovation & Creativity Centre to reduce urban poverty via the PIKRB. (Malay Mail Online)

Sarawak property market remains active, underpinned by demand
The property market in Sarawak still has room to grow, supported by steady demand for houses despite the lacklustre sentiment for the sector. The property market is still active, with encouraging amount of property sales from genuine buyers, although take-up is slightly less. Those who are planning to buy a house or residential unit in particular first time house buyers will continue to provide the demand and support for the property market. Besides that, the increase for public servants’ housing loan eligibility in Budget 2017 will encourage more government servants to own houses and thus stimulate the property market. (The Borneo Post)

MRCB to launch Kalista Park Homes and Sentral Suites in November
Malaysian Resources Corp Bhd (MRCB) will be launching its Kalista Park Homes in Bukit Rahman Putra, Sungai Buloh this November. The 5.5-acre freehold project has a GDV of RM101 million, and comprises 28 units of 3-storey superlink houses and 18 units of 3-storey semi-Ds. It is a private and exclusive residential enclave that targets upgraders and owner-occupiers, and is slated for completion in 4Q2018. Another upcoming property launch includes Sentral Suites in KL Sentral, which comprises three 43-storey towers with 1,434 units of serviced apartments and 41 units of retail lots. The project has a GDV of RM1.5 billion. This project targets investors between 30 to 50 years, as well as buyers from China, Japan and Indonesia. In addition, MRCB will launch 9 Seputeh Phase 2 in February 2017. (The Edge)

Artist's impression of MRCB's Kalista Park Homes @ Bukit Rahman Putra

Artist’s impression of MRCB’s Kalista Park Homes @ Bukit Rahman Putra

Penang to address flooding issues in 2017 state Budget
Penang’s newest development woe, flash floods, will be addressed in the state budget to be unveiled next week, said Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng. Flash floods due to heavy rainfall is a new challenge for the state, and the state needs to press the Federal Government complete the final phase of the Sungei Pinang Flood Mitigation project costing RM350 million. More than 100 houses in the state were flooded in knee-deep water over the Deepavali weekend on October 30, as well as in May and July. Lim also admitted to the “failure” of the Drainage and Irrigation Department (DID) to complete its flood mitigation projects after the previous incidents. Flash floods, traffic congestion and affordable housing are the main challenges in Penang currently. (Malay Mail Online)

Titijaya Land looks to construction for new growth
Titijaya Land Bhd has denied that China Railway Group Ltd (CREC) is acquiring shares in the company to build up a strategic stakem but it will be signing a deal with the Chinese construction company tomorrow in relation to what it has termed as “a potential development project collaboration”. It will be joining forces with CREC’s Malaysian unit, China Railway Engineering Corp (M) Sdn Bhd, to bid for and undertake upcoming infrastructure projects in the country. The move is part of the property developer’s aspiration to diversify into the construction sector. (The Edge Markets)

penang ferryPrasarana said to purchase Penang ferry ops
After more than a decade of being on the market, Penang Port Sdn Bhd (PPSB), which operates the ferry operations linking Penang island to Butterworth, may have finally found a buyer, as sources said Prasarana Malaysia Bhd is planning to buy over the iconic ferry service. However, it is not known how much the public transport service operator will pay for the operations. Sources believe the disposal is expected to synchronise with the completion of a RM200 million stake sale of PPSB to MMC Corp Bhd in 1Q17. MMC Corp had announced in August that it was acquiring a 49% stake in PPSB but without the ferry business. Both MMC and Prasarana are still considering whether to enter into a joint venture or an outright sale of the ferry business to Prasarana. (The Edge Markets)

FGV to unveil new game plan
Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) is expected to unveil its new long-term strategic plan to cope with the changing sectorial landscape. The plan will detail the group’s commitment to stay focused in the vegetable oils market, measures to reduce operating cost and the listing of its logistics arm. Some of the major changes include the group’s new approach towards M&As either in new oil palm or sugar plantations, focusing on improving the efficiency and productivity of existing estates and mills, replanting programmes and further cost cutting measures by selling off its non-core assets. FGV still intends to list its logistics arm. (The Star Online)