Govt to cut price of three-ply mask to RM1 each

The government will reduce the price for three-ply face masks to RM1 each, says Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Alexander Nanta Linggi. He said the wholesale price for the three-ply mask would be at 95 sen per piece. However, no date was given on the starting date of this new price. This was a further reduction from the RM1.20 price announced by Alexander last week. Recapping the government’s move to lower the cost of masks, he said that the maximum retail price was initially lowered from RM1.50 to RM1.20 and that this was to be enforced on Aug 15, he said. He noted that it has been compulsory for everyone to wear face masks in crowded public areas from Aug 1. “Following that decision, the demand for face masks had increased. As a caring government, I would like to state that the supply of face mask is sufficient at the moment,” he said. (The Star Online)

Malaysia is world’s 9th most complex jurisdiction to do business in

The ease of doing business in Malaysia has seen a steady improvement in the last decade, but it remains one of the most complex jurisdictions for foreign businesses to operate in. In fact, Malaysia is the ninth most complex country in the world for multinationals to do business in, and the third most complex in Asia, according to TMF Group’s the Global Business Complexity Index (GBCI) 2020 report. According to the report, the country’s dismal position is mainly due to “high complexity” when it comes to the process for foreign businesses, which can take up to a month. However, the government is trying to address this problem to make Malaysia a more attractive place to do business where it launched a digital submission platform for audits and financial statements, says Sharon Yam, TMF Group’s managing director for Malaysia. In Asia, only Indonesia (1st) and mainland China (6th) represented a larger challenge for multinational firms looking to establish and operate local subsidiaries. Meanwhile, Taiwan, India and South Korea held the 16th, 17th and 18th position respectively. On the contrary, the special administrative regions of Hong Kong (66th) and Singapore (60th) are the Asia continent’s simplest jurisdictions for business. (The Edge)

IJM unit bags RM864.7m job to build mall and convention centre in Penang

IJM Construction Sdn Bhd, a unit of IJM Corp Bhd, has bagged a contract worth RM864.7 million to build an 11-storey retail mall and convention centre in George Town, Penang. The project is part of the integrated waterfront mixed development project in Penang known as The Light City, which comprises a convention centre, retail malls, hotels, residential condominiums and offices. The retail mall is expected to be completed within 46 months by July 31, 2024, and the convention centre is expected to be completed within 48 months by Sept 30, 2024. (The Edge)

PUNB offers 50% discount on Oct-Dec rent for business premises

Perbadanan Usahawan Nasional Bhd (PUNB) is offering a 50% discount on the rent of its business premises from October to December, 2020. Its chairman Tan Sri Noh Omar said 220 tenants would benefit from the gesture involving a total collection of RM1.3 million. During the period from April until September, PUNB waived the rent for the entrepreneurs, amounting to RM5.3 million. “This initiative is to help ease the burden of entrepreneurs affected by the Covid-19 pandemic,” he said. Noh said entrepreneurs who were severely impacted could still appeal for a further reduction of the rent. Meanwhile, Noh said PUNB would introduce a rent-to-own financing scheme for Bumiputera entrepreneurs who intend to purchase PUNB-owned, external or new business premises with a minimum value of RM500,000. (Malay Mail)

Impiana to diversify into property development

Impiana Hotels Bhd plans to diversify its core business to include property development, with the aim of improving earnings and enhancing shareholders’ value. Impiana said the ongoing redevelopment of Impiana Residences Cherating by its wholly-owned subsidiary, Impiana Cherating Sdn Bhd, has been identified as the group’s maiden venture into property development. “The board expects the property development business to contribute 25% or more of the group’s net profit and as such, intends to seek the approval of Impiana shareholders to undertake the proposed diversification, ” it said. The diversification would complement the group’s existing businesses of management and operation of hotels and resorts, property investment and hotel development. (The Star Online)