Malaysians will soon be able to check their credit score online
Bank Negara has announced that Malaysians will be able to track their financial credit position from the Central Credit Reference Information System (CCRIS) via the Internet soon. Currently, Malaysians could only obtain the CCRIS report by downloading it at BNM headquarters, or emailing the central bank. The CCRIS report was not a blacklist, but summary of an individuals financial health status. (The Star Online)

EPF contributors now more vigilant against withdrawal scams
More EPF contributors are now more vigilant when withdrawing savings from their accounts after learning from the experiences of others who had been duped by scammers. They are now either approaching the EPF, financial consultants or experienced individuals for information before using the EPF withdrawal facility. Many of them have learnt to be wary of EPF advertisements on the social media following reports and warnings about such syndicate scams in the media, as well as advice from friends and family who had dealt with the EPF before. (Malay Mail Online)

DPM suggests polls likely to be held after CNY
A reference by Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi that “a big day” will come after Chinese New Year has sparked speculation that the general election would likely to be held soon after Chinese New Year next year. “If voters made a mistake before, it is okay, I forgive. If possible, don’t repeat the mistake this time,” said the Deputy Prime Minister as reported by Bernama. Chinese New Year falls on Feb 16 and 17. The current parliamentary term expires on June 26, 2018 which means GE14 must be called within 60 days from that date. (The Star Online)

PRG, Jiangsu unit in property deal
Property player PRG Holdings Bhd and a unit of China-based Jiangsu Provincial Construction Group Ltd will jointly undertake development of affordable houses in Malaysia. A JV entity, Premier JPC Sdn Bhd, has been set up to conduct feasibility studies on 23 potential affordable homes project sites nationwide, including in Sabah and Sarawak. Its first affordable homes project will be on an 18ha site in Batu Gajah, Perak where 213 housing units will be built. The partnership will also bid for infrastructure construction projects such as highways, bridges and ports. (NST Online)

Image from Chin Hin Property

Chin Hin Property to develop RM450mil project in Sri Petaling
Boutique property developer Chin Hin Property Development Sdn Bhd is developing a project named 8th & Stellar in Bandar Baru Sri Petaling, Kuala Lumpur. The 2.2-acre leasehold mixed development with estimated GDV of RM450 million will consist of two towers housing SoHo units, serviced residences, shoplots and offices. Chin Hin Property will be moving its headquarters to the office space at 8th & Stellar. The developer is aiming for a 50% take-up rate for the residential units by end-2018 while the six shoplots might be kept for lease. (The Edge Markets)

Ming Tien food court demolished to make way for Megah Rise
Demolition works have started at the site housing the former Ming Tien food court in Taman Megah, Petaling Jaya. The 17-year-old Ming Tien food court ceased operations on Oct 31 to make way for a mixed development project called Megah Rise, which would occupy a 1.36ha plot in Taman Megah. Megah Rise will be built by PPB Property Development Sdn Bhd, the property arm of PPB Group Bhd. The residential component would feature a 31-storey block with 228 units and a seven-storey carpark. The four-storey retail podium would have grocer, healthcare, food and beverage components, a multipurpose community hall and a two-level basement carpark. (The Star Online)

The demolished Ming Tien food court (foreground, in brown) in Taman Megah. — FAIHAN GHANI/The Star

‘Prices beyond reach of Malaysians’
The prevailing local median prices of houses are beyond the reach of most Malaysians, which has led to undersupply of affordable homes in the country. Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Lee Chee Leong said the main reason was the gross mismatch between housing supply and demand, amid different expectations between households and developers. Under the 2018 Budget, the government has emphasised that it will continue to intensify efforts to increase homeownership for the rakyat with an allocation of RM2.2 billion. (NST Online)

Ekovest to focus on construction in 2018
Ekovest Bhd is planning to focus on its construction segment in 2018 and leverage on its RM5 billion tenderbook and RM6 billion in orderbook. The company also expects strong revival of job flows in the future, driven by several mega rail projects such as the ECRL, HSR and MRT3. In the next five years, the company aims to scale down its construction segment from the current 70% to 40% gradually. Concurrently, the company would be leveraging from its toll operation and property segments, which it also plans to increase to 30% respectively. Ekovest has six projects with potential GDV in excess of RM7 billion lined up in its 10-year development master plan. (NST Online)

Central depository required to resolve housing overhang
A central information depository on the state of the property market is required if the overhang, estimated at 130,690 units, on the housing sector is to be resolved. At the moment, there was no central body or policy to steer the sector for sustainable development. However, this involves co-ordinated efforts by various departments and agencies and would take time. Freeze on building of property above RM1mil would have helped the overall property sector if it had been imposed earlier and to encompass malls and office space as well, said an industry expert. Another real estate personnel said Malaysia needed a property policy which would spell out the demand and supply of the various kinds of properties. (The Star Online)

Police to watch over 12 PPR areas in KL
24 policemen and officers have been assigned to watch over 12 People’s Housing Programme (PPR) areas identified as “hot spots” in Kuala Lumpur to reduce crime rates in these areas. An officer and a policeman would be stationed at each of the PPR scheme involved as liaison officers. The PPRs identified are Sri Selangor, Kerinchi, Kondo Rakyat, Sri Pantai, Intan Baiduri, Kampung Baru Air Panas, Seri Johor, Seri Kota, Desa Tun Razak, Pudu Ulu, Salak Selatan and Kampung Muhibbah. (Malay Mail Online)

Abandoned school building to be torn down
A former school that was abandoned for 15 years in Taman Danau Desa, Kuala Lumpur will be demolished and replaced with an international school catering to the middle income group. SK Danau Perdana was built in 2003, but was ordered to close and its pupils were transferred to a nearby school after part of the wall of the building collapsed in 2004. The school was left abandoned and the site became the hangout of vagrants and drug addicts. There have been numerous complaints by nearby residents who are unhappy about the government’s delay in repairing the damage. The land which belongs to the Education Ministry is now in the process of being sold to a developer, who is planning to build an international school at the site. (The Star Online)

The long-abandoned school in Taman Danau Desa Kuala Lumpur. —S.S.KANESAN / The Star