Rehda welcomes incentives for property sector in Budget 2018
Rehda is welcoming measures and incentives announced for the property sector under Budget 2018. “We laud the government for taking the initiatives to address the high cost of living through the reduction of tax, abolishment of several tolls in Selangor, Kedah and Johor as well as subsidies for basic necessities and transportation,” said Rehda president Datuk Seri FD Iskandar. Step-up financing for PR1MA will assist home buyers at the initial stage of purchase, while the MyDeposit Scheme will encourage development of affordable housing among developers. There is also GST exemption for the management and maintenance of stratified residential buildings provided by developers from Jan 1, 2018, and upgrades on transportation networks and improved connectivity will open up more areas of development for the property sector. (The Sun Daily)

Budget 2018 starting to focus on rental market
Budget 2018’s proposals to stimulate the housing rental market could mark the beginning of a greater focus on the rental market in the near future. While Budget 2018 was described as “not exciting”, it is believed the government is putting effort to boost the rental market, said an industry expert, citing the Residential Rental Act to protect tenants and owners is indicative of the government’s focus on the rental market in the coming years. The government had also announced for the first time in 60 years, the 50% tax exemption on rental income for residential properties up to RM2,000 a month to Malaysian residents residing in Malaysia. (The Edge Markets)

Budget 2018: More incentives would help middle class
Lower income tax, more tax relief and incentives for secondary-market property purchases are some of the items on the Budget 2018 wish list of middle-class Malaysians, said Whitman Independent Advisors Sdn Bhd managing director Yap Ming Hui. Middle-class Malaysians, who account for 40% of the country’s population, are the biggest segment of taxpayers. In terms of real estate, two major areas need to be addressed for the middle-income group. First is by providing incentives for those purchasing their first home on the secondary market, as incentives are currently only given for property purchases in the primary market. Secondly, Yap hopes that this tax relief can be reintroduced and increased to RM30,000 a year for five years. He also suggests that the stamp duty for properties up to RM500,000 be waived. (The Edge Markets)

Artist impression of D’Immersione @ Dutamas (Image from PTLM)

DK Group targets year-end launch for D’Immersione at Dutamas
Property development company DK-MY Properties Sdn Bhd is targeting to launch its mixed development project D’Immersione at Dutamas by the end of this year. The project is located on a 3-acre freehold land at Jalan Duta, Kuala Lumpur and has an estimated GDV of RM850 million. It will be a mixed development comprising shop units and office suites, one corporate office tower and one block of SoHo units. Meanwhile, the group’s DK Impian SoHo project in Shah Alam is currently open for bookings. (The Edge Markets)

PRG eyeing highway, bridge and port jobs
PRG Holdings Bhd is looking to expand into the highway, bridge, port and housing development as well as project investment and financing projects in Malaysia and internationally through its partnership with Jiangsu Provincial Construction (M) Sdn Bhd (JPC). PRG is currently involved in property development, construction, and manufacturing businesses. The collaboration will also include the potential RM5 billion construction projects to be developed by PRG and the subsidiaries of Syarikat Perumahan Negara Bhd (SPNB). (The Sun Daily)

SBEZ a game-changer for Bukit Kayu Hitam
The Special Border Economic Zone (SBEZ) in Bukit Kayu Hitam, which was announced in the 2018 Budget, is a much-awaited project that will help to transform the border town in Kedah. It is touted as the next big project after Iskandar Malaysia, and will boost the livelihoods of local residents by creating more jobs and business opportunities. The development of the SBEZ will serve as a new attraction for domestic and foreign investors and further boost the economic activities in the northern region. SBEZ will create a spillover effect that will not only be enjoyed by the people of Kedah, but also those living in Perlis and Perak. (NST Online)

Immigration checkpoint at Bukit Kayu Hitem, which borders Thailand (Photo from

BBCC sells 4-star hotel block to Hass for RM290mil
BBCC Development Sdn Bhd is selling a 28-storey hotel block within the RM8.7bil Bukit Bintang City Centre (BBCC) development to Miri-based Hass Holdings Sdn Bhd for RM290 million. The hotel will be managed by hospitality group Hilton and branded as the first Canopy by Hilton hotel in Southeast Asia. The four-star hotel is scheduled to open in the fourth quarter of 2021. (The Edge Markets)

Dedicated bicycle lane in the heart of KL
Kuala Lumpur will implement its first dedicated bicycle lane, stretching 3km from Menara DBKL 1 in Jalan Raja Laut right up to Menara DBKL 3, Bandar Wawasan in Jalan Raja Abdullah. The route will be a pilot project and would be ready for the World Urban Forum held in the capital next February. DBKL was prepared to spend between RM3mil and RM4mil on the project and had hired a consultant to study its feasibility. It will not be just a dedicated bicycle lane, but a segregated one, which means that motorised vehicles will not be able to get on it. If the pilot project proved effective, more dedicated bicycle lanes in the city would be under way, integrated with the public transportation network. (The Star Online)

Hong Kong property seen among riskiest at Savills investment
Hong Kong’s sky-high prices and low affordability rank it as one of the riskiest property markets for Savills Investment Management, which is avoiding the city in favor of Japan and Australia. Hong Kong’s home prices keep soaring higher, climbing 11% since the start of 2017 to continue a nine-year bull run. Commercial property prices in the city have also set a slew of records this year. Hong Kong was ranked the least affordable city to buy a home, according to the UBS Global Real Estate Bubble Index. (Malay Mail Online)