Better Malaysia Foundation launches social enterprise programme for affordable housing

Better Malaysia Foundation (BMF) has launched a new social enterprise programme to assist the government in addressing home ownership aspirations of low-income Malaysians, namely for B40 households. BMF founder Tan Sri Vincent Tan said the social enterprise would facilitate the construction of properties with a low monthly cost of ownership, carefully designed for families to grow and prosper. Hence, he said the foundation, in collaboration with Berjaya Land Bhd, has designed a 900 sq ft five-bedroom, four-bathroom show apartment specifically for this initiative. Tan urged the government to implement strategic initiatives for banks and financial institutions to provide 100 per cent financing to B40 house buyers with two-generation home loans of between 40 and 60 years duration so that loan repayments would be affordable and manageable. He added that the government should also guarantee the home loans of B40 house buyers so that such loans could be offered at a lower interest rate. (Malay Mail)

Dr Adham says AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine safe, will be used on elderly

Malaysian health authorities today said the vaccine developed by AstraZeneca is safe for use, three days after the South-east Asian nation received its first batch of the shots bought through the global Covax facility. “I confirm the vaccine developed by AstraZeneca is safe, and it will be administered to those aged 60 years and older,” Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba said. Malaysia received its first shipment of nearly 270,000 doses of AstraZeneca’s vaccine on Friday. Some countries have limited or halted its use over possible links to blood clotting. AstraZeneca says regulatory reviews in Britain and Europe have noted its vaccine offers a high level of protection and that its benefits far outweigh any risks. Malaysia secured a total of 12.8 million doses from AstraZeneca, half of which will come via the Covax facility. It was slated to receive the first 600,000 doses in June. (Malay Mail)

GDEX to look into creating industrial REIT as part of next growth phase

GDEX Bhd aims to be a pure-play last-mile delivery company with regional presence. It will also start to look into investment in real assets, such as land and warehouses, and potentially create an industrial real estate investment trust (REIT) in future. GDEX on Dec 22, 2020 changed its official name from GD Express Carrier Bhd to GDEX Bhd to mark a new growth phase of the group. GDEX said to fuel the growth of the group, it will develop more new products and business segments, adding that digital and technology competency are the focus for developments. It will expand further in the logistics sector by moving into forwarding services, customs clearance and the cold chain, which are very synergistic with the last-mile business. From there, the group can further expand into the land, air and sea cargo business, it said. (The Edge)

Star Media Group to list property on Airbnb

Star Media Group Bhd will continue to unlock the value of its land and building assets through tenancy, including listing its property on Airbnb besides being on the lookout for potential partners for joint property developments as the newspaper publisher seeks to demonstrate adaptability and build resilience in response to an evolving media landscape amid the Covid-19 pandemic, Star Media chairman Tan Sri Chor Chee Heung said. Star Media will consider the possibility of developing real estate projects for the next cycle of growth in the property development industry to increase investment yield, he added. In the face of rapid changes in media consumption trends, the group will focus on sustaining its investment in the digital space and attracting digital revenues, according to Chor. He said this will be done by introducing new products and rejuvenating existing ones to keep up with changing market needs. (The Edge)

Star Media Group to list property on Airbnb
(Source: The Edge)

Global real estate investor confidence growing in Asia Pacific region

Investors’ confidence in the Asia Pacific region real estate market is gaining traction with anticipation of increased market stability, said a Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) Capital Tracker report. The report indicated that the region recorded over US$34 billion (RM140 billion) in direct investments within the first quarter of 2021 – a decline of less than 1% year-on-year (y-o-y). According to JLL Property Services (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd country head YY Lau, the research indicated that the majority of investment activities occurred in markets with strong domestic liquidity. The first quarter of 2021 showed that more than 70% of the total investment volume went to Japan with US$11.5 billion (RM47.3 billion), China with US$8.3 billion (RM34.13 billion) and South Korea with US$4.3 billion (RM17.68 billion). The firm predicts that demand for flex space and sustainable, energy-efficient buildings will attract investors to the longer-term future of the sector. (The Edge)