Malaysia ranks 41st for digital quality of life in 2020

Malaysia ranks 41st for digital quality of life in 2020 ahead of its neighbours Thailand which ranks 63rd and Indonesia in the 71st position. In the study covering 81% of the global population (6.3 billion people) released today by Cyprus-based Surfshark Ltd, Malaysia is among 13 countries in the Digital Quality of Life Index 2020 (DQL Index 2020) that exceed the expected digital quality of life by providing higher levels of electronic-infrastructure (e-infrastructure) and e-government than expected of their GDP levels. Malaysia has made it into the top 30 in terms of e-government and e-infrastructure. However, Internet quality is mediocre in Malaysia — it is ranked in the 48th place globally. “In particular, slow and unstable mobile connectivity is dragging Malaysia down,” said the report. (The Edge)

Hatten Land postpones launch of projects worth over RM4 billion in Malaysia

Hatten Land Ltd is postponing the launch of several projects in Malaysia worth over RM4 billion, against the backdrop of Covid-19 that has weakened economic prospects. Its executive chairman and managing director Datuk Colin Tan June Teng said despite postponing some projects, the Hatten group remains deeply rooted and vested in Malaysia with over 20 land banks and development rights in high-growth locations. Tan said the group will re-evaluate the plans for some of the developments in Malaysia, including the RM3 billion mixed-use project in Cyberjaya. The 10.2-hectare project was to be Hatten Land’s maiden venture into medical tourism. Hatten Land has deferred two projects in Melaka, including the development of an RM942 million international convention centre in Melaka Tengah for almost three years now. Hatten Land’s current development portfolio comprises Hatten City Phases 1 and 2, Harbour City, Satori, Unicity, Vedro by the River retail mall, and the Cyberjaya project. These developments combined are valued at about RM10 billion. (NST Online)

KL East Mall to open its doors on Nov 25

KL East Mall, Sime Darby Property Bhd’s first wholly owned retail mall, is expected to open its doors to the public on Nov 25. Initially slated for official opening in March 2020, the new mall had to delay its plan due to the COVID-19 pandemic. “Also taking into consideration that the retail market was projected to be subdued in the first half of 2020, it was only prudent that we delayed the opening of KL East Mall… We are prepared to protect the health and safety of the public visiting our premises and will continue to practise relevant precautionary measures for those visiting KL East Mall when it opens,” said the developer. In terms of the mall’s occupancy, it highlighted that the main tenants are Jaya Grocer, Harvey Norman, H&M, Blue Ice Skating Rink, MBO Cinemas, Camp 5, Jungle Gym, Toys R’ Us, Factory Outlet Store and Café Chef Wan. Primed as the cultural pulse of KL East — a 61.91-hectare fully integrated township development — the mall has a gross built-up of about 1.2 million sq ft and a net lettable area of 384,210 sq ft. (The Malaysian Reserve)

KL East Mall (Source: Focus Malaysia)

No change in Taman Rimba Kiara land status as decided by former Pakatan govt

The Federal Territories Ministry has decided that it will abide by the decisions made by the previous Pakatan Harapan (PH) administration over the development of the Taman Rimba Kiara land. Its minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa said that his ministry has not changed any decisions made by his predecessor, Khalid Abdul Samad, which is to allow development on part of the land while the rest is to remain as a public park. Khalid had announced the Taman Rimba Kiara developer had agreed to reduce the density and size of the project from 4.9ha to 3.2ha. Currently, a development order still stands for the 4.9-hectare lot, out of 10.1ha of Taman Rimba Kiara. Annuar clarified that the Cabinet has decided to maintain one of the two plots of land as a public park. The Taman Rimba Kiara case is now in its fifth year. (Malay Mail)

Grab to expand finance business in Singapore, Malaysia

Grab, Southeast Asia’s biggest ridehailing firm, deepened its finance sector push on Tuesday by announcing that it will offer consumer loans services in Singapore and roll-out wealth management products in the fast-growing but crowded sector. Backed by heavyweight investors including SoftBank Group Corp, Grab has already sunk its roots into financial services, food delivery and mobile payments over the last few years, even before the coronavirus pandemic hurt its mainstay ridehailing business. “Consumer loans would be offered by our partner banks via a platform provided by us on the Grab app,” said Reuben Lai, senior managing director at Grab’s financial business. Starting in Singapore later this year, before expanding to Malaysia and other countries, Grab’s third-party consumer loans will typically be disbursed within two to four days after being approved. Grab already offers working capital loans from its balance sheet to small and medium-sized enterprises in four countries. (The Star Online)