Complete Property Market Updates of Singapore

April 27, 2008

YTL pays record price for land near KL twin towers

Filed under: General — Propertymarketupdates @ 2:47 am

It plans to build luxury apartments on 0.4-ha plot that costs RM2,000 psf

YTL Corporation group managing director Francis Yeoh yesterday confirmed the conglomerate’s acquisition of a site near the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur for a record sum of RM2,000 (S$861.70) psf – and said that he thinks Malaysian land prices are still cheap.

YTL bought the KL plot of slightly less than an acre (0.4 hectare) in Jalan Stonor, near the city’s hottest address, for RM85 million – about a third higher than the previous benchmark of RM1,500 psf, property consultants said.

Mr Yeoh confirmed the group plans to build luxury apartments on the site.

‘To me, KL is still a very undervalued city,’ he said.

By his reckoning, there is a ‘600 to 700 per cent disparity’ in prices between Malaysian and regional properties, a situation he described as unwarranted because KL offers ‘one of the best quality lifestyles’.

YTL’s recent ventures in the Singapore property market have also been aggressive.

After successful bids for two upmarket plots at Sentosa Cove, it made another winning if somewhat hefty bid for the en bloc Westwood Apartments in Orchard Boulevard for S$435 million cash.

Mr Yeoh said that Malaysia’s foreign home ownership policies should be better explained and promoted to foreigners as this could help raise property values.

He noted that Middle Easterners have been among the quickest to recognise Malaysia’s lifestyle potential as well as its cheap real estate, and to understand the government’s policies on foreign ownership and to act on them.

‘They stay in the Marriot here (a YTL-owned hotel) and they now want a home,’ he said.

Similarly, Mr Yeoh recounted a holiday in Spain which he enjoyed so much that he acquired a home there.

He said that over time, and with the implementation of a proposed bullet train between KL and Singapore, ‘there will be a convergence of prices’.

Little has been heard about the proposed bullet train since the Malaysian government said it was looking at feasibility studies on the billion ringgit project, which YTL Corporation has proposed to build with private finance.

At the launch of the company’s annual Climate Change Week programme yesterday, Mr Yeoh reiterated his view that the project will be “very good to have not only economically, but because it would cut a lot of carbon emissions”.

Source : Business Times – 12 Apr 2008


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