Putra Indoor Stadium is now “Axiata Arena”
The Putra Indoor Stadium in Kuala Lumpur has been rebranded as Axiata Arena in an effort towards building a sporting nation. Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said this followed a 10-year agreement worth RM55 million between Malaysia Stadium Corporation (MSC) and Axiata Group Bhd. It is hoped that the stadium will help in promoting KL as a sports hub and also as a centre for entertainment and cultural events. Axiata Arena will be the landmark for the redevelopment of Bukit Jalil Sports Complex which will be known as KL Sport City by July. It will be used as the main stadium for various sporting events in the 29th SEA Games and 9th ASEAN Para Games this August. (New Straits Times Online)

Survey finds 58% of Malaysians likely to buy a house in first half of 2017
Despite the slow property market, some 58% of Malaysian consumers are more likely to purchase a house within the first six months of 2017, according to a survey by a leading property portal. They survey also revealed that 38% of consumers were satisfied overall with the local property market, a 10% increase in overall satisfaction compared to last year. This shows positivity as house buyers accept pricing realities and readjust strategies for 2017. Thanks to new game changers like the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) lines and transit-oriented developments, property prices would remain stable or continue to appreciate, albeit at a moderate pace. However, 59% said overall house prices were still expensive, and 39% were concerned about securing loans and capital for downpayment. (Bernama)

Bina Puri eyeing RM1bil jobs this year
Construction and property firm Bina Puri Holdings Bhd has tendered for about RM5 billion worth of local jobs, and hopes to secure at least RM1bil from that pool this year. The tender book comprises road, infrastructure (LRT and MRT), buildings (housing, government buildings, affordable housing) and flood mitigation jobs. Last year, the company obtained some RM800mil worth of jobs, all mainly from the government. Bina Puri’s joint venture with Cahya Mata Sarawak Bhd was one of those awarded a RM1.36bil contract for the proposed development and upgrade of the Pan Borneo Highway which will connect Sarawak, Sabah and Brunei upon completion in 2021. (The Star Online)

HIL Industries enters property sector with projects worth RM375mil
Plastic solutions provider HIL Industries Bhd is entering the property sector with high ambitions, acquiring two companies with approved development projects in Selangor with a combined GDV of RM375.2 million. The company aims to reduce its reliance on manufacturing. One of the projects, located in Sungai Jati, Klang, comprise 184 units of double-storey terraced house plots and eight units of double-storey semi-detached house plots with a GDV of RM196.60 million. The other development is in Bukit Kemuning, Shah Alam, for 280 units within three blocks of apartment units as well as nine units of stratified three-storey shops. It has a GDV of RM178.64mil and expected to be launched in 2Q this year. (New Straits Times Online)

Singapore to prop up SEA’s IPO market in 2017
Singapore is set to be 2017’s hottest spot for initial public offerings (IPOs) in tropical Southeast Asia with sales of stakes in business and real estate trusts, while currency volatility and weak investor sentiment curb deals elsewhere in the region. Singapore’s stock exchange has promoted itself as a centre for business trusts and REITs, which offer stable dividends. Fundraising via IPOs in Singapore hit $1.7 billion last year, up fivefold from 2015. (The Star Online)

Photo from VKeong

Photo from VKeong

Concern over Malacca’s historical sites
Malacca has successfully commercialised its rich historical heritage through tourism for over a decade, but this has also become a threat to the heritage site. Not only the public but the state’s Chief Minister Datuk Seri Idris Haron has also raised his concerns over the excessive commercialisation, especially in the Unesco World Heritage Site which could erase the site’s historical values. Malacca has taken a bold step when closing several places in the historical sites from massive development. Proposals to renovate rooms in historical buildings as guest rooms for tourists have been proposed so that tourists can experience living in the historical sites while keeping the 600-year-old buildings intact, at the same time boost economic income for the people. (The Star Online)

Tremors felt in Peninsular following Sumatra quake
Parts of Peninsular Malaysia experienced tremors following an earthquake which struck North Sumatra at 8.42pm yesterday. The medium-sized earthquake bore a magnitude of 5.5, and stuck a depth of 10km in Northern Sumatra, south-west of Binjai, Indonesia. (New Straits Times Online)