Paramount buys 49% stake in Thai property developer

Paramount Corporation Bhd has purchased a 49% equity interest in a Bangkok-based property development company for THB 60,270,000 (approximately RM8.44 million), marking its entry into Thai property development. Under the agreement, Paramount Global Sdn Bhd (wholly-owned by Paramount) will own 49% of Navarang Charoennakorn while Navarang Asset will own the remaining 51%. Paramount Group chief executive officer Jeffrey Chew said Navarang Charoennakorn would launch Na Reva, a 29-storey premium condominium project, with a GDV of THB1.3 billion (about RM172 million) on the banks of Chao Phraya River, on Feb 13. Chew said the project is an attractive option for Malaysians looking at investing in properties overseas as condominiums in Bangkok have continued to show a good yield. (The Edge)

China virus death tolls rises to 560

The number of confirmed fatalities from China’s coronavirus outbreak rose to at least 560, after authorities in hardest-hit Hubei province reported 70 new deaths. In its daily update, the health commission in Hubei also confirmed another 2,987 new cases. That puts the national total at more than 27,300, based on numbers previously issued by the central government. Despite building a hospital from scratch and converting public buildings to accommodate thousands of extra patients, there was still a “severe” lack of beds in the region. There was also a shortage of equipment and materials and officials were looking to convert other hotels and schools in the city into treatment centres. Global concerns have also risen about the virus, with cases confirmed in more than 20 countries. (NST Online)

CBRE | WTW: Flattish year but with opportunities in hotel and industrial sectors

Of all the property market segments, industrial and hotel show the most promise, while residential will remain flattish, according to CBRE | WTW managing director Foo Gee Jen. “The industrial segment is my favourite and I’ve been saying that for the last five years. A lot of new players have ventured into the segment and have built industrial estates that are gated, systematic and well-organised. We are also seeing growth in larger warehousing and logistics centres that cater for the growing demand for last-mile deliveries and expansion of e-commerce,” said Foo. The industrial sector in Penang, Iskandar Malaysia (Johor), Sibu, Bintulu, and Miri are expected to see further growth, while the hotel sector in Klang Valley, Miri, Sabah and the east coast are expected to see strong growth. (The Edge)

Singapore to stop accepting Malaysian collective travel documents next year

Singapore will stop accepting the Malaysian collective travel document (MCTD) at its international entry points, effective from Jan 1,2021. “This is to strengthen the security and efficiency of immigration clearance at Singapore’s checkpoints, ” said the republic’s Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA). The MCTD is a travel document issued by the Immigration Department to groups of five to 20 Malaysian nationals, in lieu of passports. However, the ICA said the MCTD poses security concerns as it facilitates the sharing of one travel document by multiple unrelated travellers. Other than the MCTD, the ICA said it does not accept any other countries’ collective travel documents. The ICA urged Malaysian travellers currently issued with an MCTD to apply for passports if they plan to travel to Singapore from Jan 1,2021 onwards. (The Star Online)

Trump acquitted of all impeachment charges

US President Donald Trump drew on staunch Republican support to defeat the gravest threat yet to his three-year-old presidency on Wednesday, winning acquittal in the Senate on impeachment charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. Only the third US leader ever placed on trial, Trump readily defeated the Democratic-led effort to expel him from office for having illicitly sought help from Ukraine to bolster his 2020 re-election effort. Despite being confronted with strong evidence, Republicans stayed loyal and mustered a majority of votes to clear the president of both charges – by 52 to 48 on abuse of power and 53 to 47 on obstruction of Congress – falling far short of the two-thirds supermajority required for conviction. (NST Online)

(Source: New York Times)