Taking over of toll highways estimated at RM130bil
The total cost of taking over the highways in Malaysia may breach RM100bil, with the equity portion of the concessionaires’ companies forming a larger amount than the RM52bil worth of bonds owed by the highway companies. Analysts said the equity portion of any takeover is estimated to be between RM60bil and RM80bil, which would push the total cost to RM130bil. Cost could, however, fall dramatically should the government flex its muscle in pushing through any deal with national interests in mind with the concession companies. The government announced on Saturday it had begun talks with Gamuda Bhd to buy the concession agreements of four highways as part of its promise to abolish tolls in stages. The four highways are Lebuhraya Damansara Puchong (LDP), Sistem Penyuraian Trafik KL Barat (Sprint), Lebuhraya Shah Alam (Kesas) and the Smart Tunnel. Toll charges would, however, be replaced with a congestion charge that would charge the existing toll rate for six hours a day or during the peak period for travel. (The Star Online)

Construction of SUKE, DASH to be completed by end of the year
Projek Lintasan Kota Holdings (Prolintas) has announced that the construction of the Sungai Besi-Ulu Kelang Expressway (SUKE) and Damansara-Shah Alam Highway (DASH) will be completed by the end of this year. Prolintas group CEO Datuk Mohammad Azlan Abdullah said they hoped to open both the highways to the public by mid-2020, adding that the highways were currently 52% completed. SUKE is a 24.4km, three-lane highway that starts in Sri Petaling and passes through Sungai Besi, Alam Damai, Cheras, Kajang and several residential areas before ending in Ulu Kelang. DASH will be the main connector between the Guthrie Corridor Expressway (GCE), the New Klang Valley Expressway (NKVE), the Damansara Puchong Highway (LDP) and the Penchala Link. (The Star Online)

Health Ministry not proceeding with REIT plan
The Ministry of Health (MoH) will not be proceeding with the proposal to set up real estate investment trust (REIT) to source for additional fund for the ministry, says its Minister Datuk Seri Dzulkefly Ahmad. The decision followed several studies and discussions with the Cabinet and Finance Ministry. “I form the conclusion in the ministry post-Cabinet meeting not to use REIT in the effort to generate funds for the development and improvement of MoH facilities. I also have other options for consideration,” he said. Meanwhile, Dzulkefly said MoH would be tabling a proposal and policy to make immunisation vaccination compulsory. (Malay Mail)

PRG faces hiccups on maiden luxury residential project, delayed completion
PRG Holdings Bhd’s maiden luxury residential project off Jalan Ampang, Picasso Residence, which is supposed to be the company’s flagship development, seems to be running into some troubles. The high-rise residential project, which will have an Olympic-sized swimming pool, is due for completion next month. However, purchasers are unlikely to get their keys anytime soon, as construction works have stopped for a while at the site. Prospective buyers were told the new completion date will likely be delayed to next year. Without revealing details on the cause of the setbacks faced, PRG, a manufacturer-turned-property developer, gave assurance that “everything is under control” as it has “ironed out the issues with vendors and partners”. Besides Picasso, the group has a number of launches in the pipeline, the most current being the Subang Bestari Seksyen U5 project. (The Edge)

Sabah’s first one-stop property emporium opens
Kota Kinabalu One Stop Property Centre (KKOSPC) is key to bridging the Sabah, national and international market, said Assistant Local Government and Housing Minister George Hiew Vun Zin. Hiew pointed out that the people needed to physically access a local-based platform to gather relevant and important details and model house before buying property. These are some of the factors that make KKOSPC the ideal information and investment centre for property buyers and investors. KKOSPC consists of an exhibition hall, a conference hall and a marketing team. The centre has 10 booths inside the exhibition hall that provides long-term and short-term exhibition renting service for developers to show case their newly launched properties. (The Borneo Post)

The opening of KKOSPC at Sutera Avenue Commercial Plaza (Photo from The Borneo Post)