Critical economic sectors are next in vaccination programme

Phase Four of the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme targeting critical economic sectors will begin on June 16 in Pengerang, says Khairy Jamaluddin. The coordinating minister for the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme said among the sectors involved were manufacturing, logistics, transportation, energy and utility. These sectors are those that need to operate during the MCO. Khairy also noted that they would be working closely with Protect Health Sdn Bhd, a non-profit organisation under the Health Ministry, to manage the vaccination process for the industry sector to speed up the implementation of the immunisation programme. On issues that certain companies were charging for vaccine administration, Khairy said industry vaccinations were based on a public-private partnership if the industries that have to operate during the MCO were looking to vaccinate their employees. “The government offers the vaccine for free as per our commitment under the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme. However, the industry will bear the cost of administering the vaccines which will include payment made to the healthcare organisation that is organised by Protect Health Sdn Bhd. This will include added charges for the rental of premises and other services. This is where there are inconsistencies in terms of the additional charges,” he said. (The Star)

FT minister: Free trading area programme extended until year end

The term of free licence under the Free Trading Area Programme of the Federal Territories Ministry which is scheduled to expire on July 31, has been extended until the end of the year. Federal Territories Minister, Tan Sri Annuar Musa said the decision was to ease the burden of over 4,500 registered traders under the scheme and to facilitate the group in making their business plans as the country is still facing Covid-19 with the MCO in force. “The permits will not expire next month and can be renewed automatically but they must key in the data online for us extend them automatically. They are not imposed any charges such as paying for the licence and site and they can continue trading under this programme until the end of the year,” he said. Annuar also urged over 2,000 traders who have yet to obtain a permit under the scheme, for not meeting the criteria, such as selecting a suitable site, to quickly register. The programme was introduced on November 15 last year to enable the public in the three Federal Territories to open stalls or trade in suitable areas free of charge. (Malay Mail)

81% of residential property buys in Klang Valley went to investors

Investors make up a majority of residential property purchases in the Klang Valley in 2020 at 81.1%, and they are increasingly turning their attention towards sub-sale properties. “The sub-sale residential property market in Malaysia has seen steady growth in the last few years, and this upward trend is further accelerated by the effects of the pandemic,” MyProperty Data managing director Joe Hock Thor said. “There is a rise in overall interest in the secondary market as some property owners are selling their assets at lower prices to maintain liquidity, creating opportunities for investors to acquire them below market value. The Real Property Gains Tax (RPGT) exemption has also driven some investors to cash in their existing assets and make a profit,” he said. The economic downturn in 2020 has led to a 47.2% drop in total number of residential property transactions in Klang Valley. Meanwhile, appetite for residential properties in the area remains strong among investors, with a 36.6% YoY increase in investor activity from 2019 to 2020. (The Sun Daily)

Jalin and Beike sign MoU to offer property VR technology in Malaysia

Jalin Realty International and KE Holdings Inc have signed a MoU in a virtual ceremony today to create a partnership and offer Realsee property virtual reality (VR) technology to Malaysians. The MoU will see the collaboration available in most offices of Jalin Realty, including Malaysia, Australia, Singapore, Indonesia and Hong Kong. Jalin Realty is an international real estate company with more than 30 years of experience. KE Holdings, meanwhile, is an integrated online and offline platform for housing transactions and services. Beike is a platform for property listing, and one of its services is Realsee VR technology. On the differences between Realsee and other similar property VR technology, Jalin Realty group CEO Ian Chen explained that Realsee comes with additional features such as an information card with the details of the property, Google map, as well as direct agent contact. Together with Beike, Jalin Realty will be providing free 3D virtual property VR hosting service, valued about RM5 million, for a period up to six months. The eligible parties are Malaysian developers supporting the Home Ownership Campaign, Malaysian property owners planning to sell or rent their property, as well as property agents with existing property listings. Also, Jalin Realty will provide free tour creation for interested homeowners in the Klang Valley. (The Edge)

Malaysians overseas to get free two-year extensions on their passports

All Malaysians overseas whose passports are expiring this year can apply for a free two-year extension. This comes after a surge in requests for passport renewals overseas because of the Covid-19 pandemic, said the High Commission of Malaysia in Singapore. Malaysians have to fill a form and submit it at the high commission or embassy. An e-mail will be sent to applicants for them to turn up to have their passports stamped. The high commission said current procedures are still available. According to the Malaysian government website MyGOV, passport renewals can also be done online. But the high commission noted that there is a waiting time of between eight and 12 weeks due to the high volume of applications. The high commission website states that the application fee for a passport valid for five years is RM200 (S$64.30). (The Star)