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Thread: Buyers snapping up homes in suburbs as luxury condo prices continue to climb

  1. #1
    mr funny is offline Any complaints please PM me
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    May 2006

    Default Buyers snapping up homes in suburbs as luxury condo prices continue to climb

    Weekend, June 30, 2007

    Catching up with the Joneses

    Buyers snapping up homes in suburbs as luxury condo prices continue to climb

    Joseph yadao
    [email protected]

    The suburban residential market is finally catching up with the verve of the high-end luxury market, according to a report by real estate specialists CB Richard Ellis.

    "The strong take-up recorded for suburban projects is in part due to the limited supply of new homes within the price range of $600psf and $800psf," said Mr Joseph Tan, CB Richard Ellis' executive director (residential). "Most new launches in the past 12 months have been high-end projects."

    While luxury projects continued to break price records for the second quarter of the year, three major projects in the suburban areas sold out within weeks of their launch.

    The first batch of units at the 99-year leasehold, 556-unit Casa Merah near Tanah Merah MRT station averaged $590psf when it was launched in April. But these prices quickly rose to an average of $700psf, reflecting the demand for these units.

    The 140 units at Northwood in Jalan Mata Ayer sold for an average price of $620psf while over at Woodleigh Close, Parc Mondrian's 100 units averaged $680psf amid brisk sales.

    Prices of mid-tier projects climbed as well, with The Seafront On Meyer and Wing Tai's Riverine By The Park being offered to the primary market at prices between $1,400psf and $1,500psf.

    Keppel Land's Reflections at Keppel Bay set a new benchmark price for the Telok Blangah area with its launch price of $1,900psf.

    Speculation on the property market has also resulted in a jump in the sub-sale market, with CB Richard Ellis expecting the sub-sale market to hit over 4,000 transactions by the end of the second quarter. This will be a slight increase over the 3,866 sales registered in the first quarter.

    This hike, according to the property specialist, is because of the increase in the number of sub-sales of popular projects as well as a jump in collective sale numbers, resulting in an influx of buyers looking for replacement properties.

    "Moving on to the third quarter, we expect the current positive sentiment to continue," Mr Tan said.

    "The take-up of new homes is likely to exceed 3,000 units while home prices may continue to head up by another 3 per cent to 5 per cent in the next quarter," he added.

    Awaiting this next batch of homebuyers in the next quarter will be developers with a variety of offerings to cater to these diverse tastes.

    CB Richard Ellis expects Hilltops, Scotts Square and the 99-year leasehold condominium at the Marina Collection on Sentosa Cove to be launched for the high-end segment.

    For the prime and mid-tier segment, there is the expected launch of the 99-year leasehold condominium project on Sinaran Drive and the developments on the sites of the former Dragon View Park and Eastern Mansion.

    The suburban projects are also getting in on the act, with the possibility of the Versilia On Haig and the development on the former site of Westpeak in West Coast Walk being put on the market.

  2. #2
    J Wong Guest

    Default More Expats Buying Homes As Rents Jump 35% In First Half: Analysts

    Jeana Wong
    Channel NewsAsia
    9 July 2007 2126 hrs

    Rising rentals in Singapore have led to more expatriates buying properties here.

    Property market watchers say a growing number of foreign executives are choosing to trade off living in upscale locations for bigger properties outside the city area and home ownership.

    According to some calculations, average rents in Singapore went up by 35% in the first 6 months of this year over the same period last year.

    This is causing expatriates to move to cheaper districts.

    And anecdotal evidence is suggesting that of late, more are thinking of buying their flats.

    Nicholas Mak, Consultancy and Research Director, Knight Frank, said: "Another group of expatriate tenants are actually considering buying properties - either buying the apartments they are renting, ... or considering asking for their rental package - their housing accommodation package - to be paid as a lump sum so that they can use that to purchase a home, maybe even a landed property."

    Flats in prime districts now rent for an average of S$3.26 per square foot a month, while those just outside of the central areas are letting for $2.30 per square foot a month.

    The districts of 9, 10 and 11 may be rental hotspots for most higher-end expats.

    But analysts say those seeking to buy tend to go for the upper-mid level properties between 15 to 20 years old in outlying areas like Clementi, Toh Tuck and even Loyang and Pasir Ris.

    Such expats, some of whom are permanent residents, typically have a budget of just over a million dollars.

    Donald Han, Managing Director, Cushman and Wakefield, said: "We've actually started to see out of 10 expatriates that we serve, at least one will be looking into either leasing or potentially even buying. And quite a fair bit of those will ultimately decide to purchase rather than lease. Typically they'll look into the fringe of Districts 9, 10, and 11.

    "They will look into properties which are not the top end, more into the upper-mid level, potentially within the S$800 to as much as S$1,200 psf. And the units could be of the size of one- to two-bedroom kind of apartments. For landed property, typically perhaps a District 21, landed terrace houses which might go in the region of a million to S$1.2 million."

    Property market watchers say the upward pressure on rental prices is unlikely to let up over the next 12 months.

    Mr Mak said: "Private home rentals are still going to face a lot of upward pressure for the rest of this year and probably for the first half of next year. This year alone, we could easily see average rentals go up by anywhere from 15% to even as much as 25%."

    Mr Han said: "Rental will continue to rise by virtue that it's really a landlord's market. I suspect rental in the next 12 months will probably continue to rise between the range of about 20% to 25% from current levels."

    This comes as demand continues to grow and collective sales aggravate the already limited supply available.

  3. #3
    香 港 Guest

    Default 二手樓業主提價封盤 & 港股漲769破三關


    昨 日 公 布 的 財 政 預 算 案 , 有 多 項 利 好 樓 市 消 息 , 部 分 業 主 「 打 鐵 趁 熱 」 , 即 日提價、封 盤 , 紅 磡 半 島 豪 庭 有 放 盤 單 位 業 主 , 在 預 算 案 後 加 價 100 萬 至 700 萬 元 ,與此同 時, 有 買 家 伺 機 入 市 , 東 涌 藍 天 海 岸 水 藍 天 及 西 半 山 嘉 和 苑 即 時 錄 得 成 交 ,沙田第 一 城投 資 者 問 盤 量 較 之 前 增 加 25%。

    水 藍 天 雙 號 屋 1720 萬 易 手
    香 港 置 業 稱 , 半 島 豪 庭 2 座 高 層 C 室 , 業主 在 預 算 案 後 調 高 叫 價 17% 至 700 萬元, 同區 黃 埔 花 園 個 別 放 盤 單 位 , 也 提 價 10% 至 30% , 奧 運 站 柏 景 灣 8 座 低 層 G 室,業 主 更決 定 封 盤 。 該 行 稱 , 昨 日 天 水 圍 嘉 湖山 莊 、 鴨 洲 海 怡 半 島 及 茶 果 嶺 麗 港 城放 盤單 位 叫價 均 升 5% ; 美 聯 ( 1200 ) 稱 , 大 圍 區 個 別 放 盤 叫 價 增 約 3% 。

    部 分 買 家 為 免 「 遲 買 會 貴 」 , 於 預 算 案 公 布 後 入 市 。 利 嘉 閣 稱 , 藍 天 海 岸 水藍天 雙號屋 , 昨 日 以 1,720 萬 元 易 手 。 美 聯 稱 , 嘉 和 苑 中 層 B 室 , 於 預 算 案 後 以 1,280 萬元售 出 ; 屯 門 時 代 廣 場 B 座 高 層 7 室 , 以 呎 價 2,891 元 轉 售 , 高 市 價 10% 。

    利 嘉 閣 昨 日 訪 問 402 名 市 民 , 指 入 市 意 欲 上 升 佔 56% , 較 上 次 同 類 調 查 高 12 個 百分點 ; 美 聯 稱 , 沙 田 第 一 城 問 盤 較 之 前 增 25% , 料 該 盤 及 東 區 太 古 城 本 周 末 睇樓量將 上升 。 中 原 料 中 原 城 市 領 先 指 數 下 月 將 進 一 步 攀 升 。

    發 展 商 普 遍 認 為 預 算 案 有 利 樓 市 , 長 實 ( 0001 ) 料 減 稅 及 寬 免 差 餉 可 刺 激 樓 價 較 原 先 預 期 高 5% , 豪 宅 及 整 體 樓 價 今 年 料 升 25% 及 20%。

    代 理 則 認 為 , 收 租 業 主 最 受 惠 , 並 相 信 騰 出 灣 仔 3 幢 政 府 物 業 地 皮 有 助 紓 緩核心 區 甲級 商 廈 供 應 緊 張 情 況 。 釐 印 費 未 調 減 , 地 ( 0012 ) 營 業 部 總 經 理 謝 偉 銓略感 失 望 ,但 整 份 預 算 案 仍 利 好 樓 市 及 經 濟 。


    港 府 「 派 糖 」 適 逢 外 圍 股 市 顯 著 做 好 , 好 友 乘 勢 於 期 指 結 算 前 夕 大 反 攻 , 除 豐控 股( 0005 ) 及 中 資 金 融 股 外 , 部 分 受 惠 預 算 案 的 股 份 顯 著 做 好 , 包 括 地 產 股 、 酒店股 及零 售 股 , 當 中 地 產 股 更 是 好 友 反 攻 利 器 。

    對 於 財 政 司 司 長 在 新 一 年 度 財 政 預 算 案 當 中 , 大 幅 增 加 ○ 八 / ○ 九 年 度 勾 地表土 地數目 至 62 幅 , 中 銀 國 際 分 析 員 何 柱 認 為 , 無 助 紓 緩 今 、 明 兩 年 緊 絀 的 供 應 ,因為有 關 項目 最 快 要 到 二 ○ 一 ○ 年 才 「 出 籠 」 , 在 美 息 持 續 向 下 及 本 港 高 通 脹 情 況下,料 中 、 小型 住 宅 樓 價 今 年 上 升 20% 至 25% , 豪 宅 更 可 上 升 30% 至 35% , 所 以 地產股前 景 仍 然 看好 , 三 月 中 減 息 前 尚 有 上 升 空 間 。

    新 樓 渴 市   地 產 股 看 俏
    瑞 銀 亞 洲 地 產 聯 席 董 事 王 震 宇 認 為 , 無 論 政府 增 加 多 少 幅 土 地 , 若 維 持 高 地 價政策 ,不 放 寬 發 展 商 的 勾 地 價 , 只 會 令 本 港 住 宅供 求 繼 續 失 衡 。 他 又 說 , 現 時 外 圍經 濟環 境與 九 十 年 代 相 若 , 如 美 國 經 濟 衰 退 , 需要 持 續 減 息 , 但 現 時 本 港 內 需 強 勁, 內 地經 濟仍 然 向 好 , 情 況 比 當 年 更 佳 , 今 、 明兩 年 樓 價 或 有 機 會 超 過 升 50% 預 測, 地 產 股今 年續 有 雙 位 數 字 上 升 。

    摩 根 士 丹 利 亞 太 區 主 席 兼 署 理 行 政 總 裁 羅 奇 表 示 , 美 國 聯 儲 局 將 於 下 月 減 息四分 之一至 半 厘 , 但 減 稅 及 減 息 不 可 以 挽 救 經 濟 , 預 期 美 國 經 濟 將 經 歷 3 至 5 季 衰退, 現時 通脹 處 低 水 平 , 不 擔 心 會 有 滯 脹 問 題 。 他 又 認 為 , 亞 太 區 股 市 長 線 仍 處 牛市, 個別 市 場下 跌 20% 至 30% , 但 整 體 仍 有 15% 至 20% 升 幅 , 例 如 A 股 及 H 股 。

  4. #4
    Unregistered Guest

    Default Re: 二手樓業主提價封盤 & 港股漲769破三關

    Quote Originally Posted by 香 港

    昨 日 公 布 的 財 政 預 算 案 , 有 多 項 利 好 樓 市 消 息 , 部 分 業 主 「 打 鐵 趁 熱 」 , 即 日提價、封 盤 , 紅 磡 半 島 豪 庭 有 放 盤 單 位 業 主 , 在 預 算 案 後 加 價 100 萬 至 700 萬 元 ,與此同 時, 有 買 家 伺 機 入 市 , 東 涌 藍 天 海 岸 水 藍 天 及 西 半 山 嘉 和 苑 即 時 錄 得 成 交 ,沙田第 一 城投 資 者 問 盤 量 較 之 前 增 加 25%。

    水 藍 天 雙 號 屋 1720 萬 易 手
    香 港 置 業 稱 , 半 島 豪 庭 2 座 高 層 C 室 , 業主 在 預 算 案 後 調 高 叫 價 17% 至 700 萬元, 同區 黃 埔 花 園 個 別 放 盤 單 位 , 也 提 價 10% 至 30% , 奧 運 站 柏 景 灣 8 座 低 層 G 室,業 主 更決 定 封 盤 。 該 行 稱 , 昨 日 天 水 圍 嘉 湖山 莊 、 鴨 洲 海 怡 半 島 及 茶 果 嶺 麗 港 城放 盤單 位 叫價 均 升 5% ; 美 聯 ( 1200 ) 稱 , 大 圍 區 個 別 放 盤 叫 價 增 約 3% 。

    部 分 買 家 為 免 「 遲 買 會 貴 」 , 於 預 算 案 公 布 後 入 市 。 利 嘉 閣 稱 , 藍 天 海 岸 水藍天 雙號屋 , 昨 日 以 1,720 萬 元 易 手 。 美 聯 稱 , 嘉 和 苑 中 層 B 室 , 於 預 算 案 後 以 1,280 萬元售 出 ; 屯 門 時 代 廣 場 B 座 高 層 7 室 , 以 呎 價 2,891 元 轉 售 , 高 市 價 10% 。

    利 嘉 閣 昨 日 訪 問 402 名 市 民 , 指 入 市 意 欲 上 升 佔 56% , 較 上 次 同 類 調 查 高 12 個 百分點 ; 美 聯 稱 , 沙 田 第 一 城 問 盤 較 之 前 增 25% , 料 該 盤 及 東 區 太 古 城 本 周 末 睇樓量將 上升 。 中 原 料 中 原 城 市 領 先 指 數 下 月 將 進 一 步 攀 升 。

    發 展 商 普 遍 認 為 預 算 案 有 利 樓 市 , 長 實 ( 0001 ) 料 減 稅 及 寬 免 差 餉 可 刺 激 樓 價 較 原 先 預 期 高 5% , 豪 宅 及 整 體 樓 價 今 年 料 升 25% 及 20%。

    代 理 則 認 為 , 收 租 業 主 最 受 惠 , 並 相 信 騰 出 灣 仔 3 幢 政 府 物 業 地 皮 有 助 紓 緩核心 區 甲級 商 廈 供 應 緊 張 情 況 。 釐 印 費 未 調 減 , 地 ( 0012 ) 營 業 部 總 經 理 謝 偉 銓略感 失 望 ,但 整 份 預 算 案 仍 利 好 樓 市 及 經 濟 。


    港 府 「 派 糖 」 適 逢 外 圍 股 市 顯 著 做 好 , 好 友 乘 勢 於 期 指 結 算 前 夕 大 反 攻 , 除 豐控 股( 0005 ) 及 中 資 金 融 股 外 , 部 分 受 惠 預 算 案 的 股 份 顯 著 做 好 , 包 括 地 產 股 、 酒店股 及零 售 股 , 當 中 地 產 股 更 是 好 友 反 攻 利 器 。

    對 於 財 政 司 司 長 在 新 一 年 度 財 政 預 算 案 當 中 , 大 幅 增 加 ○ 八 / ○ 九 年 度 勾 地表土 地數目 至 62 幅 , 中 銀 國 際 分 析 員 何 柱 認 為 , 無 助 紓 緩 今 、 明 兩 年 緊 絀 的 供 應 ,因為有 關 項目 最 快 要 到 二 ○ 一 ○ 年 才 「 出 籠 」 , 在 美 息 持 續 向 下 及 本 港 高 通 脹 情 況下,料 中 、 小型 住 宅 樓 價 今 年 上 升 20% 至 25% , 豪 宅 更 可 上 升 30% 至 35% , 所 以 地產股前 景 仍 然 看好 , 三 月 中 減 息 前 尚 有 上 升 空 間 。

    新 樓 渴 市   地 產 股 看 俏
    瑞 銀 亞 洲 地 產 聯 席 董 事 王 震 宇 認 為 , 無 論 政府 增 加 多 少 幅 土 地 , 若 維 持 高 地 價政策 ,不 放 寬 發 展 商 的 勾 地 價 , 只 會 令 本 港 住 宅供 求 繼 續 失 衡 。 他 又 說 , 現 時 外 圍經 濟環 境與 九 十 年 代 相 若 , 如 美 國 經 濟 衰 退 , 需要 持 續 減 息 , 但 現 時 本 港 內 需 強 勁, 內 地經 濟仍 然 向 好 , 情 況 比 當 年 更 佳 , 今 、 明兩 年 樓 價 或 有 機 會 超 過 升 50% 預 測, 地 產 股今 年續 有 雙 位 數 字 上 升 。

    摩 根 士 丹 利 亞 太 區 主 席 兼 署 理 行 政 總 裁 羅 奇 表 示 , 美 國 聯 儲 局 將 於 下 月 減 息四分 之一至 半 厘 , 但 減 稅 及 減 息 不 可 以 挽 救 經 濟 , 預 期 美 國 經 濟 將 經 歷 3 至 5 季 衰退, 現時 通脹 處 低 水 平 , 不 擔 心 會 有 滯 脹 問 題 。 他 又 認 為 , 亞 太 區 股 市 長 線 仍 處 牛市, 個別 市 場下 跌 20% 至 30% , 但 整 體 仍 有 15% 至 20% 升 幅 , 例 如 A 股 及 H 股 。
    Look at HK, property price up & transaction surge recently.
    We always follow HK in stock & property market.

  5. #5
    Unregistered Guest

    Default Re: 二手樓業主提價封盤 & 港股漲769破三關

    Quote Originally Posted by 香 港

    昨 日 公 布 的 財 政 預 算 案 , 有 多 項 利 好 樓 市 消 息 , 部 分 業 主 「 打 鐵 趁 熱 」 , 即 日提價、封 盤 , 紅 磡 半 島 豪 庭 有 放 盤 單 位 業 主 , 在 預 算 案 後 加 價 100 萬 至 700 萬 元 ,與此同 時, 有 買 家 伺 機 入 市 , 東 涌 藍 天 海 岸 水 藍 天 及 西 半 山 嘉 和 苑 即 時 錄 得 成 交 ,沙田第 一 城投 資 者 問 盤 量 較 之 前 增 加 25%

    水 藍 天 雙 號 屋 1720 萬 易 手
    香 港 置 業 稱 , 半 島 豪 庭 2 座 高 層 C 室 , 業主 在 預 算 案 後 調 高 叫 價 17% 至 700 萬元, 同區 黃 埔 花 園 個 別 放 盤 單 位 , 也 提 價 10% 至 30% , 奧 運 站 柏 景 灣 8 座 低 層 G 室,業 主 更決 定 封 盤 。 該 行 稱 , 昨 日 天 水 圍 嘉 湖山 莊 、 鴨 洲 海 怡 半 島 及 茶 果 嶺 麗 港 城放 盤單 位 叫價 均 升 5% ; 美 聯 ( 1200 ) 稱 , 大 圍 區 個 別 放 盤 叫 價 增 約 3% 。

    部 分 買 家 為 免 「 遲 買 會 貴 」 , 於 預 算 案 公 布 後 入 市 。 利 嘉 閣 稱 , 藍 天 海 岸 水藍天 雙號屋 , 昨 日 以 1,720 萬 元 易 手 。 美 聯 稱 , 嘉 和 苑 中 層 B 室 , 於 預 算 案 後 以 1,280 萬元售 出 ; 屯 門 時 代 廣 場 B 座 高 層 7 室 , 以 呎 價 2,891 元 轉 售 , 高 市 價 10% 。

    利 嘉 閣 昨 日 訪 問 402 名 市 民 , 指 入 市 意 欲 上 升 佔 56% , 較 上 次 同 類 調 查 高 12 個 百分點 ; 美 聯 稱 , 沙 田 第 一 城 問 盤 較 之 前 增 25% , 料 該 盤 及 東 區 太 古 城 本 周 末 睇樓量將 上升 。 中 原 料 中 原 城 市 領 先 指 數 下 月 將 進 一 步 攀 升 。

    發 展 商 普 遍 認 為 預 算 案 有 利 樓 市 , 長 實 ( 0001 ) 料 減 稅 及 寬 免 差 餉 可 刺 激 樓 價 較 原 先 預 期 高 5% , 豪 宅 及 整 體 樓 價 今 年 料 升 25% 及 20%。

    代 理 則 認 為 , 收 租 業 主 最 受 惠 , 並 相 信 騰 出 灣 仔 3 幢 政 府 物 業 地 皮 有 助 紓 緩核心 區 甲級 商 廈 供 應 緊 張 情 況 。 釐 印 費 未 調 減 , 地 ( 0012 ) 營 業 部 總 經 理 謝 偉 銓略感 失 望 ,但 整 份 預 算 案 仍 利 好 樓 市 及 經 濟 。


    港 府 「 派 糖 」 適 逢 外 圍 股 市 顯 著 做 好 , 好 友 乘 勢 於 期 指 結 算 前 夕 大 反 攻 , 除 豐控 股( 0005 ) 及 中 資 金 融 股 外 , 部 分 受 惠 預 算 案 的 股 份 顯 著 做 好 , 包 括 地 產 股 、 酒店股 及零 售 股 , 當 中 地 產 股 更 是 好 友 反 攻 利 器 。

    對 於 財 政 司 司 長 在 新 一 年 度 財 政 預 算 案 當 中 , 大 幅 增 加 ○ 八 / ○ 九 年 度 勾 地表土 地數目 至 62 幅 , 中 銀 國 際 分 析 員 何 柱 認 為 , 無 助 紓 緩 今 、 明 兩 年 緊 絀 的 供 應 ,因為有 關 項目 最 快 要 到 二 ○ 一 ○ 年 才 「 出 籠 」 , 在 美 息 持 續 向 下 及 本 港 高 通 脹 情 況下,料 中 、 小型 住 宅 樓 價 今 年 上 升 20% 至 25% , 豪 宅 更 可 上 升 30% 至 35% , 所 以 地產股前 景 仍 然 看好 , 三 月 中 減 息 前 尚 有 上 升 空 間 。

    新 樓 渴 市   地 產 股 看 俏
    瑞 銀 亞 洲 地 產 聯 席 董 事 王 震 宇 認 為 , 無 論 政府 增 加 多 少 幅 土 地 , 若 維 持 高 地 價政策 ,不 放 寬 發 展 商 的 勾 地 價 , 只 會 令 本 港 住 宅供 求 繼 續 失 衡 。 他 又 說 , 現 時 外 圍經 濟環 境與 九 十 年 代 相 若 , 如 美 國 經 濟 衰 退 , 需要 持 續 減 息 , 但 現 時 本 港 內 需 強 勁, 內 地經 濟仍 然 向 好 , 情 況 比 當 年 更 佳 , 今 、 明兩 年 樓 價 或 有 機 會 超 過 升 50% 預 測, 地 產 股今 年續 有 雙 位 數 字 上 升 。

    摩 根 士 丹 利 亞 太 區 主 席 兼 署 理 行 政 總 裁 羅 奇 表 示 , 美 國 聯 儲 局 將 於 下 月 減 息四分 之一至 半 厘 , 但 減 稅 及 減 息 不 可 以 挽 救 經 濟 , 預 期 美 國 經 濟 將 經 歷 3 至 5 季 衰退, 現時 通脹 處 低 水 平 , 不 擔 心 會 有 滯 脹 問 題 。 他 又 認 為 , 亞 太 區 股 市 長 線 仍 處 牛市, 個別 市 場下 跌 20% 至 30% , 但 整 體 仍 有 15% 至 20% 升 幅 , 例 如 A 股 及 H 股 。
    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered
    Look at HK, property price up & transaction surge recently.
    We always follow HK in stock & property market.
    1. Price increased by 25%!
    2. Price increased by HK$7M!
    3. Market will move up by 30-35% this year!
    4. Growth over the next 2 years will over-exceed the 50% target!

    Over-exceed 50% growth target over the next 2 years!!!!!

  6. #6
    Business Times Guest

    Default HDB Will Cater To Buyers With Different Income Levels: Mah

    HDB will cater to buyers with different income levels: Mah
    Business Times
    Friday, 29 Feburary 2008

    The Housing & Development Board (HDB) will continue to provide a range of housing options to cater to buyers of differing income levels and aspirations, Minister for National Development Mah Bow Tan told Parliament yesterday.

    He was responding to concerns that the price gain in the HDB market is putting flats out of the reach of many. HDB resale prices rose by about 17 per cent last year. In addition, reports said that buyers forked out up to $727,000 for a five-room flat in a private-developer built, condo-style project offered under the Design, Build and Sell Scheme (DBSS).

    The price gain for resale homes should slow this year. Mr Mah said: ‘The HDB resale price index grew by only one per cent in January, and I expect prices to grow at a more moderate pace in 2008.’

    The HDB plans to release three more DBSS sites to build up a ‘reasonable stock’ of DBSS flats, Mr Mah said. Together with the four sites already released, the new sites will yield about 4,000 flats.

    He said HDB will continue to cater to buyers with different aspirations and means by providing a range of housing options.

    However, Mr Mah said that flats built by HDB will continue to be the mainstay of new supply.

    ‘Similar to executive condominiums, DBSS flats serve a small niche market of buyers that can afford to pay higher prices for public housing with different designs and features,’ he said.

    Mr Mah also unveiled details of HDB’s new Lease Buyback Scheme, which aims to help low-income and elderly households.

    Under the scheme, which will be implemented next year, the HDB will purchase the tail-end of the flat lease from an elderly household. The occupants will continue to stay in the flat, which will be left with a 30-year lease. On top of the housing equity unlocked, it will provide an additional $10,000 subsidy.

    Of the total amount, $5,000 will be given to the household as an upfront lump sum, while the remainder will be used to purchase a CPF Life Plan to provide the owner with a monthly stream of income for life. If the flat is jointly owned by an elderly couple, they will get individual CPF Life Plans.

  7. #7
    The Straits Times Guest

    Default CDL Boss Prepared To Delay Launches In Subdued Market

    CDL boss prepared to delay launches in subdued market
    Some projects can be held off till 2009, he says, as full-year gain swells to $725m

    Fiona Chan
    The Straits Times
    Friday, 29 Feburary 2008

    The property market may have stalled for now, but City Developments (CDL) executive chairman Kwek Leng Beng is not too worried.

    He said that if necessary, he can hold off launches of new developments until next year.

    ‘Rather than launch today when the market is subdued, I would rather start construction on some projects first’ and launch them when demand picks up, Mr Kwek said yesterday.

    ‘If today there are not many buyers, this means that pent-up demand is building up, which can be very powerful.’

    CDL plans to launch more than 400 units in four projects by June, assuming market conditions do not worsen.

    It will release the 77 units at Shelford Suites in Bukit Timah, which is said to have been ready for launch for some time.

    The group also intends to launch 100 units of the 228-unit Quayside Isle @ Sentosa Cove, and another 100 at a new development on the former Lock Cho Apartments in Thomson Road, which will have 336 units.

    The fourth project is a joint venture at Pasir Ris Drive 1. About 150 of its 724 units are targeted for release by June.

    Even if the launches end up delayed, CDL may first start construction on Shelford Suites and the Thomson Road project, said Mr Kwek.

    This could also bring in more upfront cash for the group when it does sell the homes. Buyers have to pay 30% in cash after foundation work is done, compared with only 20% if no construction has started.

    Mr Kwek’s comments yesterday came on the back of a sterling year for CDL last year.

    The developer, Singapore’s second-largest, said full-year net profit more than doubled to a record $725 million. Revenue rose 22% to $3.11 billion.

    Earnings per share more than doubled to 78.3 cents for the year. Net asset value per share rose to $5.72 as at Dec 31, from $5.21 a year ago.

    Last year, CDL booked profits from projects such as St Regis Residences, Tribeca and The Sail @ Marina Bay.

    But it has yet to recognise any profits from One Shenton, The Solitaire, Cliveden at Grange and Wilkie Studio - which account for about $1.7 billion of sales. In all, the group sold 1,655 homes last year for a record $3.4 billion.

    CDL’s hotel and office properties are also enjoying high occupancy rates in the buoyant market. Its offices are almost 96% occupied, compared with a market average of 92%.

    The group has also not adopted the same approach to revaluing its properties as some of its competitors, which have reported huge revaluation gains. With these gains, its profit would have surged to $2.8 billion, it said.

    The group is recommending a final cash dividend, tax-exempt, of 20 cents a share in total.

    Latent Demand

    ‘If today there are not many buyers, this means that pent-up demand is building up, which can be very powerful.’

    Mr Kwek, on why he would rather begin construction on some projects, and launch them later on when demand picked up.

  8. #8
    CNA Guest

    Default Area Around Singapore River To Be Revamped For F1 Night Race

    Area around Singapore River to be revamped for F1 night race
    Wong MunWai
    Channel NewsAsia
    Friday, 29 February 2008, 1906 hrs

    Singapore River

    The area around the Singapore River is getting a new look to give it a night-time buzz, and lighting will be a key feature in the makeover.

    The Read and Cavenagh bridges will be fitted with programmable lights that produce different colours and patterns. There will also be lights under the Clemenceau, Coleman and Elgin bridges.

    Even the underpasses at Boat Quay, Empress Place and Clarke Quay will be fitted with programmable lights.

    The river steps outside Central Mall and UOB Plaza will light up as well.

    Floating lights in the shape of jellyfish will be making a splash on the river outside Empress Place. There will also be new street lamps and lights on the trees along the riverfront.

    Work on the makeover starts in April and the Singapore Tourism Board is aiming to finish the first phase in time for the Formula One night race in September.

    The first phase of infrastructure work stretches from the mouth of the Singapore River to the Cavenagh Bridge and Clarke Quay – about 2km out of the total 3km of works.

    The second phase – from Robertson Quay to Kim Seng Bridge – will start in October 2008, and is scheduled to be completed in March 2009.

  9. #9
    The Straits Times Guest

    Default Singapore Will Be 'Important Node' In Arab Network

    Singapore will be 'important node' in Arab network
    The Straits Times
    Friday, 29 Feburary 2008

    Singapore has always been an 'important node' in the international Arab network, and Foreign Minister George Yeo is confident that the country will become one again in the 21st century.

    With the Middle East fast becoming a 'new frontier' for Singapore, he told the House yesterday that the region is 'full of opportunities, though not without risks'.

    In the last few years, relations between Singapore and the Arab nations have seen a 'sea change' and high-level bilateral visits are so common, it is happening almost every month.

    Mr Yeo was responding to Dr Mohamad Maliki Osman and Mr Hawazi Daipi (both Sembawang GRC), who asked about Singapore's ties with the Middle East.

    Relations with the six countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) have been stepped up, said Mr Yeo, and negotiations on a free-trade agreement between Singapore and the GCC were successfully concluded last month.

    The GCC members are Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Oman, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

    It is estimated that about 35 million people live in these GCC states.

    Beyond the GCC, Singapore's ties with Libya have also 'begun to flower', said Mr Yeo, since the establishment of relations last year.

    Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong will be making an official visit to Libyan capital, Tripoli, later this year.

    Mr Yeo also revealed that Shell's Singapore chairman Lee Tzu Yang has been appointed to chair the new Middle East Institute. An international search for a director is ongoing.

  10. #10
    The Sunday Times Guest

    Default Charmed Circle

    Charmed Circle
    The Sunday Times
    Sunday, 2 March 2008

    The Circle Line will open from next year, starting with Stage Three, which links the Bishan station on the North-South Line to the Serangoon station on the North-East Line. Experts say this added accessibility will boost property values in the areas around each station. Which are some of the notable stations and residential developments to look out for now?

    Bartley Road - Steep price jump likely

    Current prices

    At the end of last year, homes in the Bartley area averaged $543 per sq ft (psf) in price.

    While there are too few projects in the area to allow an accurate comparison of average prices over time, those projects with more transactions showed steady price rises last year.

    These include Casa Rosa at Lorong Ong Lye and Sun Rosier at How Sun Drive, which went up in price by 20 per cent to 30 per cent last year.

    Potential growth

    Home prices are likely to jump by up to 30 per cent after the completion of the Circle Line MRT Station in front of the Maris Stella schools, said Mr Ku Swee Yong, the director of marketing and business development at Savills Singapore.

    He said this is one of the locations that will see the biggest rises in value as prices in the area are fairly low right now.

    The construction around the area seems to be more extensive than usual, he noted.

    ‘I would expect a significant price jump once the station is operational. Residents will then reap the benefits after suffering years of disruption from the road works.’

    New launches

    A new 35-unit freehold project, Evania at Bartley Road, was recently launched right in front of the future station.

    Prices start from more than $800,000 for a two-bedroom unit and go up to just above $1.1 million for a 3+1 bedroom unit. There is also a penthouse.

    Lorong Chuan - Richly valued haven

    Current prices

    Prices in the area around Lorong Chuan and Serangoon Avenue 3 climbed almost 50% on average last year, according to data from Savills Singapore.

    They are now about $710 per sq ft (psf), from $480 psf the year before. But prices vary hugely depending on the project’s age.

    Chuan Park at Lorong Chuan, built in the mid-1980s, goes for about $600 psf. In contrast, The Chuan, a recent launch, has seen transactions go over $1,000 psf.

    At Amaranda Gardens at Serangoon Avenue 3 and Goldenhill Park Condo at Mei Hwan Drive, both fairly new projects, units have sold for $743 to $914 psf since the year started.

    Potential growth

    The quiet residential area is popular with locals and expatriates alike, partly because of the schools there, which include Nanyang Junior College and St Gabriel’s Primary School.

    Home prices, however, have already gone up significantly in the last 12 months, so not much upside is likely, said Savills’ Mr Ku Swee Yong. He expects a 10 to 15% rise this year.

    New launches

    No future launches are known at this time. Apart from The Chuan, recent launches include two cluster housing projects, Dunsfold 18 and Milford Villas, which came on the market last year.

    Dunsfold 18 bungalows sold for between $3 million and $3.6 million each.

    The terrace houses at Milford Villas went for $1.2 million to $1.63 million each.

    Marymount - Moderate price increase

    Current prices

    Condominiums around the future Marymount MRT Station saw an average price increase of 35% last year.

    Prices rose from about $576 per sq ft (psf) to $777 psf last year, according todata from Savills Singapore.

    Thomson 800 at Thomson Road is among the developments that command the highest prices in the area. Its most recent transactions, in October last year, went above $1,000 psf.

    Elsewhere, at Seasons View in Pemimpin Drive and Lakeview Estate in Upper Thomson Road, homes are fetching less than $700 psf.

    Potential growth

    The spillover from nearby Bishan - as well as the cluster of office and industrial buildings near the new MRT station - could boost prices in the area by up to 15%, said Savills.

    The proximity to Raffles Junior College and Raffles Institution will further enhance property values near the station.

    New launches

    A new project is set to be built at Bishan Street 22, courtesy of Sim Lian Land, which bought the land last year from the Housing Board (HDB).

    Last year, Sim Lian’s managing director, Mr Kuik Sing Beng, said he expected to launch a 600-unit development on the plot by this June.

    He said it would be a 99-year leasehold, entry-level condo aimed at HDB upgraders. He estimated the homes could sell for between $700 and $750 psf.

    Mountbatten - Boost expected from Sports Hub

    Current prices

    Located near the former Kallang Stadium site and the interim campus for the School of the Arts, Mountbatten is an up-and-coming estate, but it has few condominiums.

    Apartments at nearby Tanjong Rhu and Meyer Road, however, are going for between $1,000 and $1,500 per sq ft (psf) on average.

    Potential growth

    Property watchers said with so few private housing projects in the vicinity, it would be hard to track price growth around the station. Once the nearby Sports Hub is completed, however, property values around the area could rise by at least 10 per cent, they said.

    New launches

    A small project launched in the area last Saturday quietly sold more than 80 per cent of its 45 units within a week.

    The freehold Cosmo, located 400m from the upcoming Mountbatten MRT Station, fetched average prices of $1,050 to $1,100 psf.

    As at Friday, a few two-bedroom and duplex units were still available, priced at between $700,000 and $925,000.

    Mr Melvin Poh, the managing director of Cosmo developer Fission Development, describes the area as ‘quite exciting’, as there are so many billion-dollar projects sprouting up nearby.

    He expects home rentals in the area to hold steady, given its proximity to the city and a future MRT station.

    Dakota - Values to swing up on HDB turf

    Current prices

    The site for the upcoming Dakota MRT Station lies smack in the middle of an HDB estate, with few private homes immediately nearby.

    The Government, though, may be trying to further develop private housing in the area, given the release of a plot at Dakota Crescent last year.

    Few HDB resale transactions have taken place there in recent months. A single four-room flat sold for $440,000 last month.

    Further down the Dunman Road/Tanjong Katong Road side, prices of private condominiums have shot up by some 40 per cent in the last year to an average of between $700 and $1,000 per sq ft (psf).

    Potential growth

    Home prices at Dakota are not expected to rise by that much, since they have already gone up a fair bit in the last year.

    With a new station opening in the area, however, values could go up by at least 20%, once construction is finished and the roads are cleaned up, said Savills Singapore’s Mr Ku Swee Yong.

    The presence of many schools in the area, including Broadrick Secondary School and Chung Cheng High School, should also boost demand and rentals.

    New launches

    Boutique developer Ho Bee, which bought the government plot released last year, has a widely anticipated project coming up on the site.

    The new units are likely to be launched at an average of $1,000 to $1,100 psf, Ho Bee said last year.

    About 380 homes can be built on the 99-year leasehold site.

  11. #11
    AP Guest

    Default Singapore Is Best City For Asian Expatriates To Live: Survey

    Singapore is best city for Asian expatriates to live: survey
    Gillian Wong
    Associated Press
    Tuesday, 4 March 2008, Singapore Time

    Singapore has topped a list of cities around the world offering Asian expatriates the best quality of life, followed by Sydney, a survey from a human resources consultancy said Tuesday.

    U.K.-headquartered ECA International's annual location ranking, which compares living standards in 254 international locations, found that Singapore is an ideal place for Asians to live in because of the quality of its infrastructure and health facilities.

    The city-state's low health risks, air pollution, crime rates and cosmopolitan population added to its appeal, Lee Quane, ECA International's general manager in Hong Kong, told The Associated Press.

    Quane noted, however, that while Singapore scored consistently well in most of the 15 categories used to asses each location, it saw a deterioration in some factors.

    "Air pollution in 2007 was slightly higher than 2006, primarily due to the haze in 2007," Quane said. Haze from forest fires in neighboring Indonesia has become a major problem Singapore, where air quality levels have worsened every year during the dry season.

    Sydney came in second, followed by Melbourne, Australia, and Kobe, Japan, which tied for third place in the ranking that combines data collected by ECA International with results of a survey of expatriates.

    While Sydney and Singapore scored similarly well in criteria such as pollution levels, the quality of goods and services available, transport and infrastructure, the Australian city's geographical distance from Asia made it a less favorable location than Singapore, Quane said.

    "For Sydney, Japanese or Chinese assignees will have to travel relatively long distances, and so it's much more difficult to maintain contact with family," Quane said. He added that cultural differences were also a factor.

    The fifth-best city for Asian expats was Copenhagen, Denmark, the survey found, followed by Canberra, Australia (6th), Vancouver, Canada (7th), Wellington, New Zealand (8th), Yokohama, Japan (9th) and Dublin, Ireland (10th).

    Elsewhere in Asia, Hong Kong and Tokyo were tied at 15th place.

    Hong Kong made improvements in personal security and healthcare infrastructure but air pollution was likely to remain a problem, Quane said.

    "People feel safer in Hong Kong than they have in recent years," he said. "But looking at the main reason why Hong Kong still lags behind Singapore is the issue of air pollution."

    Quane noted, however, that Hong Kong scored better than Singapore in one respect: the media.

    "In news and media, we regard Hong Kong as much more free and fair than in Singapore," he said.

    The survey showed that Baghdad, Iraq, remains the least favorable place to live for Asian expats, followed by Kabul, Afghanistan and Karachi, Pakistan, because of the high risk to personal security and lack of suitable facilities for expatriates.

  12. #12
    Today Guest

    Default Faint Light At End Of Sub-prime Tunnel

    Faint light at end of sub-prime tunnel
    Saturday, 1 March 2008

    A heart-thumping sub-prime ride for local banks may be nearing a halt after two quarters of hefty provisions for risky investments.

    But investors looking to banks repeating the double-digit earnings gain of recent years could be disappointed. A slowing economy is likely to put a squeeze on interest margins and earnings growth, suggesting 2008 could turn out to be, at best, unexciting.

    “The banks have already provided a significant coverage against its collateralised debt obligation portfolio (CDOs) as far as asset-backed CDOs are concerned … but currently, there is no strong growth catalyst. Business is driven by mostly organic growth and core business,” said Kim Eng analyst Pauline Lee.

    For fiscal year 2008, she predicted core bank earnings to grow at an average of 6% to 8%, slower than the 10% in 2007.

    Loan growth should remain strong on a robust construction sector and as borrowers start to draw down on loans made during last year’s property boom, said Phillip Securities’ Brandon Ng.

    But lower margins caused by falling interest rates could cloud the positive prospects. Inter-bank rates have been easing since late last year, taking the cue from the United States rates.

    Stock markets which appeared to defy gravity helped boost non-interest income substantially last year, but the reverberations from the sub-prime crisis shook capital markets and weakened sentiment, suggesting this source of income would be affected in 2008, said Daiwa Institute of Research analyst David Lum.

    While “one of the major external risks” may be removed this year, at the same time, “there’s nothing really new to look forward to”, said Mr Lum.

    Global banks sent a shiver through the world’s financial system when they disclosed massive losses related to their investments in sub-prime debt. In Singapore, banks created shocks too although their exposures were viewed as more limited.

    The shares of the three banks, which have dropped an average of almost 20% from last August to end-January, have since found a footing.

    Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation rose 11¢, or 1.4% to $7.78 yesterday, while DBS Group Holdings and UOB dropped 18¢ and 42¢ to $17.70 and $18.42 respectively.

  13. #13
    The Straits Times Guest

    Default 20,000 Jobs Up For Grabs At Mega Career Fair

    20,000 jobs up for grabs at mega career fair
    Jessica Lim
    The Straits Times
    Friday, 29 Feburary 2008

    More than 20,000 jobs are up for grabs at the largest career and education exhibition which opens its doors to the public on Thursday at Suntec Singapore.

    Over 600 exhibitors and companies from 20 countries are looking to fill the openings, which include more than 5,000 spots in educational institutions.

    The Singapore Tourism Board has projected that some 50,000 to 60,000 additional jobs will be created by the end of 2010.

    Minister of state for Education and Manpower Gan Kim Yong, who was present at the opening ceremony on Thursday morning, said: 'The new integreated resorts, hotels and shopping malls, as well as conventions and events like the F1 race, will generate numerous opportunities in the tourism sector.'

    He emphasised the importance of students making informed decisions on their courses of study and, subsequently, their careers.

    The new features of the exhibition, which has been running for over 20 years, include a scholarship corner, which provides information on the scholarships avaialble, as well as an online job and course search.

    Another first is the Silver Talent Pavilion, where matured workers will be able to seek employment in the landscape, healthcare and security sectors.

    Said Ms Lynette Loo, the project director of ERC institute who expects to recruit more than 100 new students:'Of all the students who sign up, we expect 40% to sign up for tourism courses. It is such a popular area now.'

    The event, Career 2008 & Education 2008, will run till March 2 at Suntec Singapore in Halls 601 to 603 on level 6. Admission is free.

  14. #14
    Business Times Guest

    Default If The US Goes Into A Recession ...

    If the US goes into a recession ...
    Business Times
    Monday, 3 March 2008

    How will a US slowdown or recession affect your organisation and industry, and the Singapore economy in general? What can businesses do in the event of a slowdown?

    Clemen Chiang
    Freely Business School

    THE US recession had already started since December 2007. I predict that the federal funds rate will drop to one per cent by September 2008. After that, we will most likely witness a rebound and rally in the market.

    If the recession is more prolonged, it would at most extend by another six months to March 2009. Investors must remember that our present recessionary cycle is very different from the US recession between July 1981 and November 1982. In one way, it is similar to the 1981-82 one because the recession hit financial institutions such as banks and savings and loans particularly hard. The significant difference lies in the fact that we now have the sovereign wealth funds stepping in to prevent these financial institutions from closing down. In addition, we have wealth distributed from oil-rich countries in the Middle East.

    Singapore is positioned to ride through the stormy weather in style! In these unique circumstances, Singapore has invested in three of the world's most exciting banks, namely UBS, Citigroup and Merrill Lynch. We have also lined up world-class activities to ensure a continuous influx of tourist arrivals to boost domestic consumption:

    Q1 2008 - Singapore Flyer
    Q3 2008 - Singapore Grand Prix
    Q3 2009 - Las Vegas Sands Marina
    Q3 2010 - Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games
    Q4 2010 - Resorts World Sentosa.

    These activities will allow us to tide over the challenges ahead. In the event of a slowdown, Singapore businesses should take advantage of this period to upgrade themselves through higher education, visiting other countries for opportunities and consolidating.

    Singapore can weather storm

    Singapore had been largely dependent on the US for its export market. However, in recent years, Singapore has successfully diversified its export markets to include China and India. In addition, its ongoing projects such as the integrated resorts, the hosting of the first Formula One night race and, most recently, the hosting of the 2010 Youth Olympics, would provide plenty of opportunities for the local market especially in the construction and services industries.

  15. #15
    The Straits Times Guest

    Default Singapore Is Most Liveable City In Asia

    Singapore is most liveable city in Asia
    Europeans and Americans view country as best in region while Asians say it is world’s top spot.

    The Straits Times
    Wednesday, 5 March 2008

    Singapore has hit another home run with expatriates - Europeans and Americans reckon it is the best place in Asia to live, while Asians say it is the top spot anywhere in the world.

    The annual survey, which has a major influence on luring foreign talent, compares living standards in 254 locations across the globe.

    For the sixth straight year, Asian expatriates have named Singapore as the best city worldwide for quality of life.

    Its fine infrastructure and health facilities, cosmopolitan population, and low health risks and crime rates scored the Republic plenty of points among those surveyed, according to the poll by human resources consultancy ECA International.

    Singapore trumped the Australian cities of Sydney and Melbourne, which were ranked the second and third most attractive places worldwide for Asians to call home .

    Europeans and Americans were also sold on Singapore, ranking it as their preferred choice in Asia, although on a global scale, they opted for Copenhagen. The Danish capital also ranked as the fifth best place worldwide for Asians to live in.

    About 1,500 companies globally buy the report, so the ranking can greatly influence hiring policies.

    ECA recommends that companies do not need to pay any ‘hardship’ allowances to their workers assigned to Singapore. This allowance, which can comprise up to 30 per cent of an expat’s salary, is paid to workers in countries where the standard of living is lower than in their home base.

    The more comfortable the location, the lower the allowance and Singapore’s is set at zero.

    However, there were some negatives this year with scores for air quality in Singapore hit by the smoke haze.

    The Republic’s score for availability of quality accommodation also declined slightly, primarily due to the collective sale fever which has ‘reduced the supply of decent-standard accommodation in Singapore, irrespective of cost’, said Mr Lee Quane, ECA International’s general manager.

    This narrowed the gap between Singapore and other locations such as Hong Kong, which jumped eight places in the rankings to No. 4 on the list of Asian cities with the best quality of life for Asians.

    Hong Kong’s scores improved, thanks to significantly better scores for personal security.

    Mr P.Maran, an Indian national in his 40s working for a technology multinational firm here, said Singapore was ‘by far the best place for Asians to live as it is safe, clean and is closer to home than other locations such as Australia’.

    But he noted that the cost of such high-quality living comes at a price. ‘The cost of everything from rental to transport to children’s education is shooting up,’ he said.

    While this survey did not rank Singapore in terms of cost of living, an ECA study last November showed that the Republic rose 10 places in a global survey of the most expensive places for expatriates to live.

    But despite the jump, Singapore, at No. 122, is still significantly cheaper for expats than Hong Kong and other key global centres, such as London - at No. 10.

    Popular choices Top 10 locations in the world for Asians to live

    1. Singapore
    2. Sydney (Australia)
    3. Melbourne (Australia)
    3. Kobe (Japan)
    5. Copenhagen (Denmark)
    6. Canberra (Australia)
    7. Vancouver (Canada)
    8. Wellington (New Zealand)
    9. Yokohama (Japan)
    10. Dublin (Ireland)

  16. #16
    FT Guest

    Default Liechtenstein Probe Likely To Boost Singapore

    Liechtenstein probe likely to boost Singapore
    John Burton
    Financial Times
    Monday, 3 March 2008, 12:28 pm Singapore Time

    Singapore, the world’s fastest growing private banking centre, could be the main beneficiary from the Liechtenstein tax evasion investigation, according to the global head of Société Générale’s private banking business.

    “Because of what happened in Liechtenstein, we will see a higher flow of funds into Singapore,” said Daniel Truchi, who previously headed SG Private Banking’s Asian operations from Singapore. “The momentum is accelerating.”

    The recent events in Liechtenstein are “sort of like an earthquake for European private banking” because “it undermines client confidence” and its effects will be felt in other European wealth management centres, including Switzerland and Luxembourg, Mr Truchi said.

    Singapore will attract more money because its bank secrecy and trust laws governing inheritance are among the tightest in the world, Mr Truchi said. Those who break Singapore bank secrecy laws are subject to harsher punishments than applied in Switzerland. Singapore also has no laws against international tax evasion.

    Singapore has introduced new rules on bank secrecy and trusts in the past few years in consultation with the global private banking industry as the south-east Asian city-state has identified wealth management as a growth industry.

    Singapore could receive a significant boost as money flows from Europe.

    Switzerland’s private banking business is 10 times bigger than Singapore’s but if we see 10% of those funds moving from Switzerland, it will double the amount of assets managed in Singapore,” Mr Truchi said.

    However, Singapore is under growing pressure from the European Union to ease its secrecy rules to help catch tax evaders. The issue has emerged as the main stumbling block in a trade pact being negotiated between Singapore and the EU.

    “Singapore is not a tax haven. We are a low-tax country but not a tax haven. The situation that arose in Liechtenstein cannot happen here,” said George Yeo, the Singapore foreign minister, after meeting his German counterpart last week to discuss the issue.

    Singapore’s bank secrecy laws are “very important” to Singapore’s development as an international finance centre but “we do not condone drug money or terrorism money or money laundering. These are crimes,” Mr Yeo said.

    Mr Truchi said that Singapore is unlikely to bow to EU pressure in the near-term as it seeks to expand its *private banking business.

  17. #17
    The Straits Times Guest

    Default Coming Up: Changi Airport Terminal 4

    Coming up: Changi Airport terminal 4
    The Straits Times
    Friday, 7 March 2008

    To fend off competition from other airports in the region, Singapore will be building a fourth passenger terminal at Changi Airport, said Minister of State for Transport Lim Hwee Hua in Parliament.

    Speaking during the debate on her ministry's spending plans, Mrs Lim said Changi needs to expand its capacity since its status as an global aviation hub is now under strong challenge from bigger competitors like Dubai, Bangkok and Beijing.

    It was only in January that Changi Airport opened the $1.75 billion Terminal Three. $500 million have also been set aside to upgrade Terminal One, while the $240 million makeover for Terminal Two has already been completed.

    And now the 'master planning' for Terminal Four, said Mrs Lim, has already started.

    Changi's passenger traffic hit a record 36.7 million last year - 4.8% higher than in 2006.

    But regional and international competition for passengers has also intensified.

    Beijing airport's $3.8 billion third terminal, bigger than all five terminals at London's Heathrow, opened its doors on Feb 29.

    At the same time, Dubai also plans to spend $33 billion to build the world's largest airport, which will be able to handle 120 million people a year when it's ready in 2012.

    In recent years, newly expanded terminals have also sprung up in Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur.

  18. #18
    Business Times Guest

    Default Speculators Holding Out For Higher Prices

    Speculators holding out for higher prices
    Subsale activity slows but transacted prices remain resilient

    Business Times
    Thursday, 6 March 2008

    Property prices have been bolstered by speculators in the last year. But now that speculation is on the decline, could prices follow suit?

    An analysis by Savills Singapore of properties subsold last year after being bought from developers in the same year has revealed that while subsale activity dropped significantly in the last quarter, subsale prices did not, suggesting that speculators are not ready to offload their investments yet.

    The number of subsales fell by 66.7, 69.1 and 39.1% in the high, mid and mass-market segments respectively in the fourth quarter of last year from a quarter earlier.

    However, average gains made from subsales over the developers' sale price remained relatively stable. They came to 34.2% in the high-end segment in Q4, 14 percentage points higher than the full-year average gains. In the mid-tier segment, average gains fell marginally by 2.4 points to 21.1%, while in the mass-market segment, they rose 1.6 points to 17.2%.

    Savills director (marketing and business development) Ku Swee Yong adds: 'Speculators appear to be holding out for better prices.'

    Interestingly, Savills's analysis also shows that there have been several speculators that have subsold on very thin profit margins of 5% or less, adding credence to market talk that some speculators may be looking to offload properties at bargain prices soon.

    However, while Mr Ku believes that speculators that cannot manage the mortgage payments - especially after holding for a year or more on the deferred payment scheme - might be letting go at lower profits, he does not think they represent a majority.

    By his estimation, there are about 6,000 residential units that will receive TOP (temporary occupation permit) this year. 'While there may be some dumping from those who cannot afford to pay up at the point of TOP, we do not think that it will constitute more than one per cent of the 6,000 units,' he adds.

    The situation could change next year.

    'We expect around 10,000 units to receive TOP in 2009. Those who bought using the deferred payment scheme in the last couple of years might let go if they are really speculators and cannot afford to pay,' says Mr Ku.

    But he is optimistic that the low mortgage rates may mitigate the need to sell. 'The buyers might go for rental yield instead.'

    Subsales of major new launches in the high-end sector, which include developments such as Marina Bay Residences, Scotts Square and The Orchard Residences, fell to just four transactions in Q4, compared to 32 for the full year.

    Two subsales were done at less than 10% above the developer's sale price.

    The average gains from subsales over the developer's sale price were highest in the high-end market, substantiating Mr Ku's belief that this segment could prove more resilient if the global economic downturn is prolonged. 'There is a large proportion of buyers in the high-end market that are so rich, they buy properties with cash.'

    This segment is also largely supported by foreign buyers and Mr Ku says: 'Foreigners are not speculators.'

    Last year, the mid-tier segment saw 140 subsales of newly launched developments like Sky @ Eleven, The Rochester and One North Residences.

    In Q4, one subsale was transacted at just 2.3% above the developer's sale price.

    In the mass market, there were 49 subsales of newly launched projects such as The Parc Condominium, Casa Merah and Clementiwoods for the year.

    In Q4, there were 14 subsale transactions. Three were done at less than 10 per cent above the developer's sale price.

    The number of Sky @ Eleven subsales - over 60 - was among the highest in 2007. In July and August, four units were subsold for over 50 per cent of the developer's sale price.

    But the days of huge capital gains could be over.

    Mr Ku says that, based on data for January so far, subsale gains could trend downwards slightly. But he adds that there is no evidence that speculators will find themselves in negative territory yet.

  19. #19
    The Straits Times Guest

    Default Mortgage War Breaks Out As DBS And UOB Offer New Rates

    Mortgage war breaks out as DBS and UOB offer new rates
    Banks focusing on specific targets, waging battles without fanfare.

    The Straits Times
    Saturday, 8 March 2008

    THE mortgage war finally erupted, as Singapore banks responded to a dramatic rate cut by Maybank three weeks ago - with one even offering a zero per cent package.

    That attractive deal comes from United Overseas Bank (UOB), which has relaunched a package with a teaser first-year rate at rock-bottom.

    DBS Group Holdings has also rolled out new rates on several packages, including a fixed-rate deal that claims to be the lowest of its type here in Singapore.

    Unlike the fanfare that marked the rate war in 2003, though, the battle now is focused on specific targets and is being kept under the radar.

    Banks are quietly offering promotional rates on a case-by-case basis and tend to target clients with loans of well over $300,000. While the market for new mortgages has softened, banks are still busy.
    ‘A lot of customers are looking to refinance their loans taken less than a year ago, when interest rates were much higher,’ Mr Bryan Ong of mortgage consultancy said.

    Maybank sparked the war with an aggressive three-year, fixed-rate package at 1.68 per cent for the first year. This promo, which ends on Monday, has sent customers ‘rushing to submit loan applications’, said Maybank consumer banking head Helen Neo.

    About 80% of the applications were for buying private properties with an average loan size of about $675,000. Maybank is now ‘reviewing the rates’.

    Other banks have not taken the move lying down. Most have tacitly matched - or undercut - Maybank’s rates.

    DBS has a new three-year, fixed-rate package with an aggregate rate of 7.64% - lower than Maybank’s 7.74%. It offers a 1% cash rebate in the first year.

    UOB has revived its FirstZero Home Loan - a three-year, fixed-rate package available ‘only for a limited period’. The bank launched this in 2003, but it was quietly taken off the market last year amid interest rate volatility.

    FirstZero is now back with a zero per cent rate on the first year, 3.6% on the second and 4.5% on the third, making a three-year aggregate rate of 8.1%.

    It has hefty penalty charges and a three-year lock-in period.
    Standard Chartered Bank (Stanchart) actually moved before Maybank, cutting its three-year, fixed-rate package from 3.58% to 2.98% in January. It also cut its two-year package by 0.55 of a percentage point to 2.88%.

    DBS countered this week with a 2.88% average annual rate for a three-year package and a 1% cash rebate on the first year.

    This three-week promotion is only for customers with loan quantums of at least $300,000.

    OCBC Bank had not joined the fray, with chief executive David Conner saying last month that a mortgage rate war was unlikely.
    OCBC said ‘from time to time, it offers loan packages with promotional rates that are highly competitive compared to other players’.

    The most popular packages now are those linked to transparent rates, like the Singapore Interbank Offered Rate (Sibor) or swap offered rate (SOR), comprising the Sibor plus a bank’s lending costs.
    These are official, regularly published industry rates customers can check to see how their packages are structured.

    Riding on this interest, DBS has just cut by half its rate for its 12-month, two-year, Sibor-linked loans to 0.5% for the first year.
    Nearly 80% of Stanchart’s new customers in recent months have taken up its package offering SOR plus 0.5% for the first year.

    The SOR has dropped from about 3% last year to about 1.5% currently.

    Stanchart’s head of consumer banking, Mr Ajay Kanwal, said: ‘With the interest rate environment expected to soften further, customers of SOR-linked packages will benefit even more.’

    Under The Radar
    Banks are quietly offering promo rates on a case-by-case basis and tend to target clients with loans of well over $300,000.

    Most In Demand
    The most popular packages are those linked to transparent rates, as customers can check to see how they are structured.

  20. #20
    CNA Guest

    Default Wages Expected To Keep Up With Rising Inflation

    Wages expected to keep up with rising inflation
    Pamela Almeda
    Channel NewsAsia
    Thursday, 6 March 2008, 2357 hrs

    A study by human resource consultant Mercer said that companies in Singapore could increase wages by up to 5.9% this year.

    This was higher than the five per cent given in a separate survey of nearly 200 companies, that was released on Wednesday.

    Human resource consultants who spoke to Channel NewsAsia said they expect wage increases to keep up with rising inflation.

    The government has forecast inflation to hit 4.5 to 5.5% this year. And while there are worries about rising costs, human resource consultants said they expect wages to keep up.

    Su-Yen Wong, Managing Director ASEAN of Mercer, Singapore, said: "Last July, we were looking at salary increases of between 4.7 and 4.8%. When we did a refresh of the numbers at the end of last year the average increases had gone up to 5.5 to 5.9%.

    "Inflation, the increasing GST, civil service pay increase and the new grad salaries have all led to companies re-evaluating what the right salaries increment should be for next year."

    The pace will be led by the banking, property and pharmaceuticals sectors. Electronics manufacturing is expected to see a lower adjustment because of the slowdown in the US technology sector.

    In terms of staff, middle managers are enjoying a more attractive payroll this year.

    Dhirendra Shantilal, Senior Vice-President of Asia Kelly Services, said: "At this point of time there's a huge demand for the middle managers in all the industries, in all the sectors especially if you look at the financial sector. Now, these people would expect a fairly good rise and some of the rises could be as high as 10% or more."

    In another survey by HR consultants Hudson, 71% of those surveyed were looking to increase salaries of managerial new hires by more than 10%.

    Mark Sparrow, Country Manager of Singapore Hudson said: "Despite some of the malaise that we're hearing globally, many of the increases are still between 10 and 20%, with organisations such as the banking sector and the IT&T sector leading the way in that."

    According to Hudson, demand for IT professionals is also being driven by financial institutions staffing regional or global operations hubs.

    However, experts warned that if economies like the US fall into a recession, companies will be more cautious.

    Sparrow added: "What I think will happen is there will just be an extra layer of risk management applied when they're looking to hire somebody. That’s going to take them outside of a certain salary scale. And what they're going to be looking at is what return can I get on this investment."

    But other than higher wages, HR consultants said, companies are now looking into other areas such as career development and working culture to improve their attractiveness in the market.

    The survey by Mercer covers about 500 companies in Singapore, while Hudson polled some 659 executives.

  21. #21
    Business Times Guest

    Default ADB Chief Sees US Escaping Recession Despite Slowdown

    ADB chief sees US escaping recession despite slowdown
    Asian growth will slow moderately, he adds; inflation will be biggest concern

    Business Times
    Monday, 10 March 2008

    The US economy should be able to escape recession this year despite accelerating signs of a slowdown there and continuing turmoil in financial markets, according to Asian Development Bank (ADB) president Haruhiko Kuroda.

    In an interview with The Business Times, he also predicted that growth in Asia would slow only moderately this year while inflation would be the most serious concern for policymakers.

    The ADB head delivered a strongly upbeat assessment of prospects for the region's 'emerging' economies (excluding Japan), arguing that domestic demand is likely to remain robust even as external demand from the Group of Seven (G-7) industrialised economies continues to slow.

    And he urged central banks in emerging Asia to maintain tight monetary conditions, or even tighten further, in the face of growing upward pressure on prices.

    Mr Kuroda dismissed the idea that Asia could encounter another crisis on the scale of that which occurred 10 years ago. 'At this stage, I don't see any of our developing member countries as likely to be seriously hit by the problems in the global economy or financial turmoil,' he said.

    And, 'if necessary, we can shift priorities and reshuffle projects and programmes so as to match with new needs which might arise'.

    'I do think that America can escape recession,' said Mr Kuroda, 'although in the first half of the year the growth rate will be very low, maybe one per cent or less. But in the second half of the year, the US economy will recover, with probably 1-2% growth,' he predicted, adding that overall US growth of around 1.5% for the year should be possible. 'This is a significant slowdown, but it is not a recession.'

    While being more positive than many others in his assessment of US economic prospects, the former vice-finance minister for international affairs in Japan also rejected suggestions that emerging Asian economies could slow sharply in the wake of the US sub-prime mortgage crisis and associated financial and currency turbulence.

    'Domestic demand in developing Asia is still very strong,' Mr Kuroda noted. 'As intra-regional trade has increased substantially in the last several years and domestic demand has also been very strong, developing Asia as a whole can sustain relatively high growth.'

    The baseline trend is still very strong, he said, and overall growth is likely to moderate only to 7.5-8% this year compared with 8-8.5% last year. This will still be a 'respectable' rate of growth similar to that enjoyed by developing Asia in 2006, Mr Kuroda said.

    'I am more concerned about inflationary pressures in some countries in Asia,' Mr Kuroda told BT in his office at the ADB headquarters in Manila.

    'In some countries, inflation has accelerated in recent months and in other countries, asset price inflation has accelerated,' citing the cases of China and Vietnam in particular.

    'The global commodity boom and external factors have increased inflationary pressures in many countries including China,' he pointed out. 'But some domestic overheating exists and a slowdown in the Asian economies could help in containing inflationary pressures.'

    Nevertheless, 'central banks will be well advised to maintain tight monetary conditions and, if necessary, they should tighten further'.

    ADB chief economist Ifzal Ali also told BT in Manila that rising food prices in Asia are likely to be a major, ongoing contributor to inflation in the region from now on. Growing demand for food coupled with inadequate investment in the region could see prices continuing to rise by 5-6% a year on average, he suggested.

    'I think we are on the cusp of a major structural shift' whereby more resources will have to be devoted to raising agricultural productivity in Asia from now, Mr Ali added.

  22. #22
    Business Times Guest

    Default Deutsche Bank Increases Singapore Office Space

    Deutsche Bank increases Singapore office space
    It will rent 54,000 sq ft at ex-Pasir Panjang ITE.

    Business Times
    Monday, 10 March 2008

    After growing its headcount by over 20% last year, Deutsche Bank says that it will increase its office space needs here by another 54,000 square feet.

    Speaking to BT, Deutsche Bank’s chief country officer Ronnie Tan said that with the increase, it will now employ about 2,100 full-time staff in Singapore alone.

    Mr Tan added: ‘We are experiencing significant growth in all our major business lines. One example is private wealth management, where Deutsche Bank increased investable assets by 19% in 2007 to 22 billion euros (S$46.9 billion).’

    The bank is optimistic about the ‘Asian story’ and has invested accordingly.

    ‘We have come through the financial uncertainty more positively than others and I believe it’s a good time to play on our strengths - we have a strong credit rating, a strong brand and we’ve weathered the storm extremely well,’ he added.

    In 2007, Deutsche Bank’s net income was up 7% year-on-year.

    Deutsche Bank already occupies nine floors at One Raffles Quay. Taking up more than 280,000 sq ft, it is the largest single tenant there. It has also leased a further 100,000 sq ft in the central business district (CBD) for infrastructure functions.

    While Deutsche Bank did not say if it would vacate some of its CBD premises, it will be taking up 54,000 sq ft at the former Institute of Technical Education (ITE) Pasir Panjang. The premises, with a gross floor area of 218,891 sq ft, was put up for rent by the Singapore Land Authority (SLA) last year and was subsequently leased to master tenant RichZone Properties for $288,999 a month or $1.30 per square foot (psf) per month.

    Asking rents for the site are said to have increased from the initial $4 psf per month to $5-5.50 psf per month now.

    On the rationale for Deutsche Bank’s move, Mr Tan said: ‘The move to the new premises is part of our growth strategy to accommodate increasing staff numbers in Singapore and to provide flexibility for further growth.’

    Singapore is Deutsche Bank’s Asia-Pacific headquarters and also serves as a regional head office for five out of six of the bank’s key business lines including global markets, private wealth management, asset management, private and business clients, and global transaction banking.

    ‘As we’re experiencing strong growth across all facets of our business, both in Singapore and in Asia, we’re strongly focused on our recruitment and staff retention efforts across the business,’ added Mr Tan.

    Deutsche Bank is the latest multinational company to move to properties under management of the SLA. Other tenants include Foster Wheeler, a US engineering and construction services consultancy, and electronics giant LG.

  23. #23
    Reuters Guest

    Default Economists See Singapore Q1 Growth At 5.7%

    Economists see Singapore Q1 growth at 5.7%
    Monday, 10 March 2008

    Singapore's economy will grow 5.7% in the first quarter from a year ago, picking up slightly from a 5.4% expansion in the fourth quarter, a central bank survey showed on Monday.

    However, growth in the full year will slow to 5.6% from last year's blistering 7.7%, the Monetary Authority of Singapore's (MAS) quarterly survey of 19 private sector economists showed.

    The government expects the economy to grow by between 4-6% this year.

    The 2008 economic growth forecast was cut from 6.3% in the MAS's December survey, on a worsening economic outlook in key export market to the United States.

    The construction sector is seen to be leading growth in 2008, expanding 15.9% from a year ago, while the financial services sector is expected to grow 9.5%.

    Economic growth in 2008 is seen to be the weakest in the second quarter at a median 4.4%, before picking up to peak in the fourth quarter at a median 6.8%.

    Reflecting 25-year high inflation in the Southeast Asian city, economists expect inflation this year to more than double to 5.0% from last year's 2.1%.

    The Singapore economy, which shrank in the October-December period from the previous quarter for the first time since 2003, is expected to slow this year, dragged by a struggling US economy.

    However, rising consumer prices in the republic are limiting the central bank's ability to loosen monetary policy to boost economic growth.

  24. #24
    CNA Guest

    Default Public Housing Demand Continues To Be Brisk In 2008

    Public housing demand continues to be brisk in 2008
    Wong SiewYing
    Channel NewsAsia
    Tuesday, 11 March 2008, 1742 hrs

    Punggol Spring

    The demand for public housing continues to be brisk. HDB's first build-to-order project this year at Punggol Spring is already four times oversubscribed.

    New flats aside, property agents have also described the HDB resale market as the kingpin for the real estate sector in 2008.

    The application for Punggol Spring, where 494 units of four-room flats will be built, will not close until 17 March, but the project is already oversubscribed with 2,093 applications.

    Punggol Spring is part of the 4,500 new flats that the Housing and Development Board (HDB) has committed to build for the first half of this year. Prices of the Punggol Spring flats range from S$204,000 to S$259,000.

    Apart from this build-to-order development, HDB's bi-monthly sale of four-room and larger flats in February also drew overwhelming response, with over 10,000 flat buyers vying for just 278 units.

    Eugene Lim, associate director of ERA, said: "They are usually the first timers and they do not have so much cash with them, so as the norm is cash over value for the resale market, so inevitably, they are being pushed to the new flat market where they don't have to come up with as much cash or don't need to come up with any cash at all."

    Still, transaction volume in the HDB resale market is expected to remain strong. Industry players project 30,000 units to be sold in 2008, 1,000 more than last year.

    Price-wise, it is estimated to increase by about 10% in 2008, compared to over 17% in 2007.

    Property agents said the spike was partly due to the sharp rise in cash over valuation (COV). But they added this is likely to change as buyers have hit a threshold when it comes to forking out more cash.

    Propnex CEO Mohamed Ismail said: "The central areas were getting as high as S$100,000 for Queenstown, Bukit Merah, Toa Payoh, but such prices are not sustainable in the long term. Therefore, I do foresee (for) the very high-end side in the central location, the COV (will) dip quite drastically."

    Some property agents said the COV for flats in the central region will dip by 20% within the next three months. As of the fourth quarter of last year, the average COV for the area was about S$35,000 to S$40,000.

    Despite the high demand for flats, agents are confident there will be enough to go around, whether it is for families or singles.

    They also welcome HDB's new incentive to offer an extra S$9,000 grant to singles who buy a resale flat and live with their parents.

    The scheme, however, is unlikely to have any impact on the market, given the small segment it serves.

  25. #25
    The Straits Times Guest

    Default Singapore Revises Up January Manufacturing Data After Error

    Singapore revises up Jan manufacturing data after error
    The Straits Times
    Wednesday, 12 March 2008

    Singapore on Tuesday revised its January manufacturing data to show growth of 11.7% from a year ago instead of the 6.9% reported earlier, following the discovery of a computation error.

    The seasonally adjusted month-on-month growth for January was revised upward to 9.9% from an earlier 5.1%.

    The year-on-year expansion in electronics was restated at 8.7% instead of the contraction of 6.7% reported on Feb 26.

    'Our media release on Feb 26 regarding the manufacturing growth data for January 2008 contained an error. The computational error occurred in the application of the price deflator data,' the Economic Development Board said in a statement on Tuesday.

    'The EDB detected it and is publishing this revision after re-computing the data.

    'We have strengthened our processes to avoid such errors from occurring again in future. We sincerely apologise for any inconvenience caused.'

    With the correction, manufacturing output rose by 11.7% in January over a year ago. The surge in output by the biomedical manufacturing cluster boosted the increase, said EDB.

    The three-month moving average index for January 2008 rose 2.9% above the corresponding period in 2007. The seasonally adjusted month-on-month index for January went up 9.9% above December last year's index.

    The biomedical manufacturing cluster grew 60.7% year-on-year in January. Output of the pharmaceuticals segment was up 63.1% while the medical technology segment grew 40.7%.

    The general manufacturing industries grew 9.6% in January. The output of food, beverages and tobacco products expanded by 14.1%. The printing industries increased their production of printed media by 4.1%.

    On the performance of the electronics cluster, EDB said it grew 8.7% year-on-year in January. Higher output was recorded in all the segments.

    Output of the chemicals cluster also expanded by 4.6%. Production increased in the petrochemicals and specialities chemicals segments by 5.1% and 12.2% respectively. The petroleum segment grew marginally at 0.1 per cent as there were some maintenance shutdowns in the refinery plants.

    The machinery and systems segment expanded by 9% as manufacturers produced more machinery such as industrial process control equipment, generators, engines, switch boards, switchgears and transformers for export.

    However, the precision modules and components segment contracted 5.2% due to lower production of metal and plastic precision components, springs, wires, springs, nuts and bolts.

    The transport engineering cluster also shrank by 9.4%, while the marine and offshore engineering segment contracted 16% partly due to the very high output in January last year and the lower value of work done for ship repairing and shipbuilding this January.

    However, the land transport segment surged by 42.3% with demand from EU and Asia driving up output of land vehicle components.

    The aerospace segment grew 1.6% with higher production of aircraft parts.

    The next monthly manufacturing performance will be out on March 26.

  26. #26
    CNA Guest

    Default Singapore Set To Host World's Largest Cruise Ships By 2010

    Singapore set to host world's largest cruise ships by 2010
    Valarie Tan
    Channel NewsAsia
    Wednesday, 12 March 2008, 0035 hrs

    The world's largest cruise ships currently being built are set to dock in Singapore by 2010, when the new International Cruise Terminal at Marina South is expected to be completed.

    The new terminal will double the number of cruise berths in the country to four, the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) said at the Seatrade Cruise Shipping Convention 2008 in Miami, USA on Tuesday.

    STB said the terminal will also be able to host the Genesis-class cruise ships, which have an expected capacity of about 5400 passengers.

    The International Cruise Terminal at Marina South has deep waters, a large turning basin and no height restrictions, enabling it to accommodate the largest cruise ships currently being built.

    Together with the current Singapore Cruise Centre, STB said it expects the new terminal to increase the country's cruise passenger handling capacity and achieve the targeted 1.6 million cruise passengers per annum by 2015.

    Last year, the Singapore Cruise Centre reported a cruise passenger volume of over 943,000, an increase of more than 10% over the 857,000 passengers in 2006.

    STB also said Singapore will be the port of call for a host of ships in 2008, including Cunard's Queen Victoria on her maiden world cruise, and ships from Princess Cruises, P&O, Oceania Cruises, Holland America Line and Crystal Cruises.

  27. #27
    Unregistered Guest

    Default Re: 二手樓業主提價封盤 & 港股漲769破三關

    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered
    1. Price increased by 25%!
    2. Price increased by HK$7M!
    3. Market will move up by 30-35% this year!
    4. Growth over the next 2 years will over-exceed the 50% target!

    Over-exceed 50% growth target over the next 2 years!!!!!
    Hong Kong is still continuing its uptrend!

  28. #28
    Unregistered Guest

    Default Re: 二手樓業主提價封盤 & 港股漲769破三關

    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered
    Hong Kong is still continuing its uptrend!
    Then you should buy HK.

    S'pore property is not going up because foreigners are not investing here.

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