Mah Sing and Tropicana offering tailored financing schemes
Mah Sing Group Bhd and Tropicana Corp Bhd are stepping up their marketing strategies by offering tailored financing schemes to boost sales. Mah Sing has launched a deferred financing plan known as “Lock and Roll” under its “easy home ownership” campaign, which involves about 10 completed projects. Buyers can “lock” a unit with a RM10,000 booking fee, and need only serve the interest of their loan for the first 24 months, with full installments starting from the 25th month. Tropicana, meanwhile, is offering a 0% interest plan, where buyers fork out an initial downpayment from as low as 1% while enjoying deferred payments with zero interest instalment for up to 24 months, and zero progressive payments for up to 24 months. Demand for developments in prime locations is encouraging, but many buyers are struggling to secure financing. (The Star Online)

EPF records RM12.32bil income for Q3 2016
The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) today reported a quarterly investment income of RM12.32 billion for the third quarter (Q3 2016), up 29.21% from the same period last year. Investment assets recorded a 4.09% increase to RM712.5 billion. EPF Chief Executive Officer Datuk Shahril Ridza Ridzuan said that given the overall poor performance in 3Q 2015, the improved performance in Q3 2016 is accentuated by a low base. Nonetheless, most equity markets recorded an improvement over last year. EPF’s overseas investment continued to enhance returns while non-cash impairments recorded significant reduction from last year. EPF will continue to be guided by its long term investment strategy through the Strategic Asset Allocation (SAA) which has factored in short to medium-term volatility in the market such as the US presidential election. (New Straits Times Online)

O'hako Residences by Marimo

O’hako Residences by Marimo

Marimo to build first project in Malaysia
Marimo Land (M) Sdn Bhd today signed an agreement with E&J Group, Ecobuilt (M) Sdn Bhd and Pembinaan Infra E&J Sdn Bhd to build its first development project in Malaysia with a gross development value of RM390 million. The project, O’hako Residensi, which will span across 1.72 hectares of land in Puchong Jaya, Selangor, will be a premier freehold condominium, comprising two residential towers of 359 units each. Both towers are expected to be completed in 2019, with 90% and 60% of Tower A and Tower B sold respectively. Targeted at local middle-class buyers, the development brings together the spirit of innovation, tradition, and Japanese culture, offering over 50 facilities including the Japanese “onsen” (hot spring). (Bernama)

Private sector developed 91% of Johor projects last year
About 91% of the projects developed in Johor last year, worth RM22.7 billion, were carried out by the private sector while the rest were government projects, said State Public Works, Rural and Regional Development Committee chairman Datuk Hasni Mohamad. The committee has decided to establish a Contractors’ Capacity Development Centre to expose and prepare contractors for the mega projects in the state. This is to focus on capacity building efforts and environmental business opportunities through the Contractor Development Master Plan. (The Sun Daily)

RM120mil IRDKL Mall launched in Shah Alam
A new family entertainment complex, IRDKL Mall in Section 16, Shah Alam was launched by Raja Muda Selangor Tengku Amir Shah yesterday. The 20-storey mall, which also houses offices and conference halls, is expected to become another attraction spot in Shah Alam with its cinema-entertainment concept. The mall began construction two years ago and cost about RM120mil to build. It features a variety of indoor entertainment facilities, including a 9D Virtual Reality simulators, the first in Malaysia, and a cinema multiplex with the latest visual and audio technologies. The mall is expected to reveal its family karaoke centre soon. (New Straits Times Online)

No more F1 races in Malaysia after 2018
Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz said Malaysia will no longer host the Formula One Grand Prix race in Sepang once the current agreement expires in 2018. The hosting of the race had proven to be costly and has not brought necessary returns to the country. Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin had earlier expressed his support for a temporary halt to Malaysia hosting the motorsport event, as F1 attendance was dropping and RM300 million a year was spent on the race. Recent reports also indicated that Singapore is mulling exit from the event after its F1 contract end in 2017. (New Straits Times Online)

Malaysia's Sepang F1 circuit (Photo from Daily Mail)

Malaysia’s Sepang F1 circuit (Photo from Daily Mail)

Over 128,000 barred from overseas travel due to tax arrears
A total of 128,165 certificates of restrictions on travel abroad has been issued by the director-general of Inland Revenue with tax arrears involved amounting to RM3.4 billion as at June 2016, according to the 2015 Auditor-General’s Report. The travel ban is managed under Section 104 of the Income Tax Act 1967 and Section 22 of the Real Property Gains Tax Act 1976 as part of enforcement actions by the Inland Revenue Board (IRB). There are increasing number of cases registered, as well as the amount involved on income and real property gains tax for 2013 to 2015. (The Rakyat Post)