Consortium in 1MDB property deal says it fulfilled payment obligations
The Malaysian-Chinese consortium that had planned to buy a majority stake in Bandar Malaysia has refuted allegations that it had failed to make necessary payments. Last week, headlines were made when TRX City Sdn Bhd said the deal to sell 60% of Bandar Malaysia had lapsed because the consortium failed to meet payment obligations. Last Friday, Iskandar Waterfront Holdings and China Railway Engineering Corp (CREC) said TRX’s allegation that the share sale agreement has lapsed was “unacceptable.” The consortium has fulfilled all the required payment obligations under the agreement on its part towards TRX, it said. (Astro Awani)

ECRL expected to create RM50bil of GDP impact, says project owner
The RM55 billion East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) is expected to help create RM50.1 billion of GDP impact, said project owner Malaysia Rail Link Sdn Bhd (MRL). It cited World Economic Forum estimates that every dollar spent on a capital project, such as transport, generates economic return of between 5% and 25%. The ECRL project was undertaken with such objective to allow more townships across the four states (Kelantan, Terengganu, Pahang and Selangor) to have greater access to trade and business opportunities. The 600.3km rail link is expected to reduce the cost of freight transportation, increase commercial activities, improve mobility, and promote tourism. It is confirmed that the first of ECRL’s 23 stations is Wakaf Bahru, Kelantan, while the final station is Gombak, Kuala Lumpur. (The Edge Markets)

IWH-IWCity merger still on, up to RM6bil may be raised
Iskandar Waterfront Holdings Sdn Bhd (IWH) is going ahead with the proposed merger with associate Iskandar Waterfront City Bhd (IWCity), and may raise up to RM6 billion through debt issuance and private placement. IWH, which will assume IWCity’s listing status, will also be injected with RM4.3bil worth of property assets spanning 1,456ha. The proposed merger scheme is expected to be completed by 1Q next year. (The Star Online)

Rent-to-own increasingly popular with homebuyers
The rent-to-own or rent-to-buy approach to home ownership is becoming increasingly popular, and helps to resolve the woes of prospective homebuyers, particularly those among the lower-income group when purchasing units below RM500,000. It offers a lease option contract for a unit with a property developer a certain period, with the option of purchasing the property. It helps house buyers facing financial setbacks, such as failing to secure a housing loan from a bank, or not being able to afford the property they want. (New Straits Times Online)

PR1MA housing a blessing for low and middle-income groups, say buyers
The introduction of the 1Malaysia People’s Housing Scheme (PR1MA) has fulfilled the dreams of many in the low and middle-income group to buy their own houses at affordable prices. The scheme is especially welcome amid soaring property prices and cost of living. During PR1MA Open Day on 6 & 7 May, one of the attendees said she was thankful to the government for being able to buy a family house at an affordable price. Another attendee said she was happy and grateful to be chosen among those eligible, as her several attempts to buy a house in the Klang Valley was rejected due to high prices and banks did not approve her loan. (Malay Mail Online)

A family looking at one of the PR1MA projects on display during PR1MA Open Day on 6 May 2017. -BERNAMA

Hua Yang acquires Ipoh land to develop RM295mil mixed project
Property developer Hua Yang Bhd is acquiring a 3.8-acre parcel of land in Bandar Meru Raya, Perak, which will be developed into a mixed project with GDV of RM295.1 million. Its wholly-owned subsidiary Yoon Lian Realty Sdn Bhd had entered an agreement with Bumi Semarak Development Sdn Bhd to acquire the piece of land for RM15.31 million. Hua Yang plans to develop 720 units of serviced apartments and 72 units of commercial shop lots on the site. The acquisition and development is in line with its objective to expand in Perak and tap into the high growth, integrated Bandar Meru Raya. (The Edge Markets)

Inta Bina counting on affordable housing projects
Building contractor Inta Bina Group Bhd will be banking on more affordable housing projects in the next two years to propel its next stage of growth. With major property developers shifting towards the affordable housing space, the segment would be Inta Bina’s focus until the housing market gained momentum. At present, Inta Bina has one affordable housing project, Eco Majestic in Semenyih, worth RM89.41mil under Eco World Development Group Bhd. The company expects to raise RM26.76mil from its initial public offering (IPO) exercise. (The Star Online)

Buddhist centre to be built in Putrajaya
A national Buddhist centre and houses of worship of other major faiths will be built in Putrajaya as part of the Government’s plan to have a multi-religious enclave at the nation’s administrative capital. The centre is located next to a Hindu temple that is currently being constructed. The government has also set aside land around that area for other major non-Muslim faiths such as Christianity, Taoism and Sikhism. About RM8mil will be raised by the Buddhist Missionary Society of Malaysia (BMSM) to construct the two-storey building with a garden rooftop and a built-up area of 1,858sq m. It will house a resource centre, training facilities and and education centre. The building, which will also become BMSM’s national headquarters, is slated to be completed by August 2018. (The Star Online)