First-time homeownership is top priority for real estate industry in Budget 2022

Real estate technology group, Juwai IQI said the top priority for the Malaysian real estate industry in the upcoming Budget 2022 is to focus on supporting first-time homeownership. Group co-founder and CEO, Kashif Ansari said based on its recent survey, real estate agents across the country would like to see more focus on making it easier for first-time and lower-priced buyers to acquire their own home, as well as the financial security and wealth building opportunities that go along with homeownership. The three measures that are most popular with the real estate industry are doing more to support first-time buyers, providing stamp duty relief, and reinstating the Home Ownership Campaign (HOC). “Each of these was the top priority for 18% to 19% of the industry surveyed, that is nearly one out of every five agents,” he said. Meanwhile, Kashif expects Budget 2022 to sum up the government’s goals and expectations and be one of the most important measures it put into effect this year. (The Malaysian Reserve)

Non-Covid-19 patients in Klang Valley govt hospitals to be transferred to private facilities

Non-Covid-19 patients at government hospitals in the greater Klang Valley area will be transferred to private facilities to make space for more Covid-19 patients, says the Association of Private Hospitals Malaysia (APHM). Its president Datuk Dr Kuljit Singh said non-Covid-19 patients were being transferred to the private hospitals in stages from Tuesday (July 20). “This decision has been made by private hospitals in the greater Klang Valley area consisting of hospitals in Kuala Lumpur, Selangor and some in Negri Sembilan. These hospitals will accept non-Covid-19 inpatients from government hospitals as well as patients in the emergency department. The idea is to assist the government so that they will have more space in some hospitals where they are planning to convert them into full Covid-19 hospitals,” he said. “This is a good move because the government has the infrastructure, the facilities and the experience to treat Category 4 and 5 Covid-19 patients in a big way,” he addedd. On costs, Dr Kuljit said the patients who are transferred to private hospitals do not have to pay for it. “Private hospitals will try their best to treat the patients within the cap,” he said, adding that any excess would be negotiated with the government. (The Star)

14 million doses of Sinovac to be sold to interested states, private companies

A total of 14 million doses of Sinovac vaccine will be sold by Pharmaniaga Bhd to interested states and private companies from this month until September, said Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob. He said the sale of the vaccine directly to interested parties had received the approval of the Covid-19 Vaccine Supply Access Guarantee Special Committee (JKJAV), could further expedite efforts to achieve herd immunity earlier than scheduled. “States are also interested in buying directly, for example Selangor which has long asked for vaccine to be sold directly to them but this committee has its own programme schedule, and that is why we can’t give directly,” he said. He said Pharmaniaga had managed to supply 12 million doses of Sinovac vaccine four and a half months ahead of the original contract schedule and on July 19, the government had agreed to purchase another two million doses of Sinovac to cover Operation Surge Capacity. He said the list of companies and states that applied to purchase vaccine would be referred to the Covid-19 JKJAV for review. (Malay Mail)

At least 25 dead as torrential rain floods Chinese city

At least 25 people, including a dozen passengers trapped in a flooded subway, have died after torrential rains inundated central China, paralyzing several cities and causing millions of dollars in damage. As river embankments were breached in record downpours across Henan province, President Xi Jinping described the situation as “extremely severe” with flood control measures entering a “critical stage”. Around 200,000 residents were evacuated in Zhengzhou, local government officials said, as soldiers led rescue efforts in the city of over 10 million people, which saw the equivalent of a year’s average rain dumped on it in just three days. The rainfall in the region was the heaviest since record-keeping began 60 years ago, coming as scientists say climate change is worsening flooding around the world, alongside other increasingly extreme weather patterns. Rainstorms submerged Zhengzhou’s metro late Tuesday, killing 12 people and injuring five, while city officials said hundreds were rescued from the subway. Authorities have issued the highest warning level for Henan province as floods continue to hammer the region, with landslides blocking many roads, villages evacuated, tourist sites closed and large areas left without communication. (CBS News)

Malaysia to experience hotter and drier climate until mid-September, says MetMalaysia

Malaysia is currently experiencing the south-west monsoon, which results in a hot and dry climate, from now until mid-September, according to the Malaysian Meteorological Department (MetMalaysia). It said that thus far no heatwaves have been detected. Additionally, the department’s meteorological stations had yet to record temperatures higher than 35 degrees Celsius for three days in a row, hence, it is not expecting the temperature to exceed 40 degrees. “In terms of weather changes, we can expect heavy downpours, strong winds, and high humidity as a result of Malaysia going into a transitional monsoon, especially in the states located on the west coast and inland of Peninsular Malaysia, west coast of Sabah, and western and central regions of Sarawak,” it said. (Malay Mail)