IWH plans Malaysia’s biggest IPO since 2012

Iskandar Waterfront Holdings (IWH) Sdn Bhd has hired banks to help prepare for an initial public offering (IPO) in Kuala Lumpur to raise about RM5 billion (US$1.2 billion), in what would be the biggest first-time share sale in the Southeast Asian nation since 2012. The property firm is working with Bank of China Ltd, CIMB Group Holdings Bhd, Citic CLSA and Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd on the planned IPO, executive vice chairman Lim Kang Hoo said. The potential share sale values IWH at more than RM20 billion. The company had originally aimed to list on the domestic bourse this year but the plan has been pushed back to the second half of 2021 because of the impact from the coronavirus pandemic, Lim said. IWH may consider a second listing in mainland China or Hong Kong after it goes public in Kuala Lumpur, he added. At US$1.2 billion, IWH’s planned IPO would be the biggest since IHH Healthcare Bhd’s US$1.3 billion sale in 2012. (NST Online)

Housing integrated data system to be ready next year

The Housing Integrated Data System (HIDS) being developed by the Housing and Local Government Ministry (KPKT) is now 50% complete and expected to be ready next year, said Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin. She said HIDS is being developed for a thorough collection and analysis of housing data through big data from the federal and state governments as well as government and private agencies and NGOs. “We (KPKT) are collecting this information to plan and build a system that can be utilised by the ministry and developers to plan the construction site of housing areas at a more affordable price. Buyers can choose the location or type of house that suits their budget,” she said. On the targeted housing loan scheme, especially for the B40 and M40 groups, Zuraida said the matter would be implemented under the 12th Malaysia Plan (12MP). The scheme would provide guidelines that would make it easier for banks to approve housing loans. (NST Online)

Rent-to-own way to reset affordable homes issue

The concept of affordable housing in Malaysia needs a complete reset, with ”rent-to-own” (RTO) schemes being an effective to way improve the lives of the lowest income group (B40) nationwide, property experts believe. Alpha REIT Managers chairman Datuk Stewart LaBrooy said the reset was needed as the term “affordable housing” in Malaysia was an oxymoron. “It doesn’t exist, ” he said. “How do you sell a house to a person who does not have money?” LaBrooy said the concept of affordable housing should be replaced with the concept of “affordable rents”. LaBrooy said the only way to deal with the situation is for the government to take the excess demand, subsidise the rent, place the people into decent accommodations and let them start to pick themselves up. Meanwhile, Rahim & Co International Bhd executive chairman Tan Sri Abdul Rahim Abdul Rahman said there was too much political interference when it comes to the property sector. “Land is a state matter. When a political party falls in one state, the policies that were done before are changed because of new politics.” (The Star Online)

RM4.5m upgrade for Kiara park

Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) will be allocating RM4.5mil towards the beautification of Taman Awam Rimba Kiara. Federal Territories Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa also confirmed that a 6.8ha area of the park in Taman Tun Dr Ismail, Kuala Lumpur, would be gazetted for the community’s recreational use and no further development would be allowed on this parcel. Before it was demarcated, Taman Awam Rimba Kiara had sat on a 10.12ha tract. In 2014,4.8ha was carved out and transferred to Federal Territories Foundation (YWP) for a luxury condominium and affordable housing project, which met fierce opposition by the community. On the park’s upgrading exercise, Annuar said it would cater towards the elderly and families with young children. The upgrade will be divided into six zones. An observatory tower, canopy walk, wall climbing and a riverfront boardwalk are mentioned in the concept proposal plan. (The Star Online)

(Source: The Star Online)

Japan parliament elects Yoshihide Suga new prime minister

Japan’s parliament on Wednesday elected Yoshihide Suga prime minister, with the former chief cabinet secretary expected to stick closely to policies championed by Shinzo Abe during his record-breaking tenure. Suga, 71, won an easy victory, taking 314 votes of 462 valid ballots cast in the lower house of parliament, where his ruling Liberal Democratic Party holds a commanding majority with its coalition partner. He is expected to announce his cabinet the same day, with local media reporting he will retain a number of ministers from Abe’s government. Suga has said he will prioritise keeping coronavirus infections under control and kickstarting Japan’s economy, and has promised to continue Abe’s key policy programmes. (NST Online)

Japanese prime minister Yoshihide Suga (Source: Getty Images)