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Loans Growth To Taper Off As Property Sales Growth May Slow Down In 2011

Extract from Bernama (31/01/11)

KUALA LUMPUR -- ECM Libra Investment Research expects the loans growth to taper off in anticipation that property sales growth may slow down in late 2011.

Residential and non-residential property loans which accounted for 44 per cent of loans growth in 2010 are already showing signs of growth moderation, it said in a research note on Monday.

Residential loan approval has contracted 3.8 per cent year-on-year in December while non-residential loan approval slowed to 30.2 per cent from 47.3 per cent in November.

"Loans growth will also be dampened by an impending statutory reserve requirement (SRR) hike and imposition of macro-prudential lending measures as guided by Bank Negara Malaysia in its latest monetary policy statement on Jan 27," said ECM Libra.


Beautiful Sabah Tea Garden Now Serves As A Tourist Spot As Well

Extract from Bernama (31/01/11)

KUALA LUMPUR -- Sabah Tea Garden which started off as an organic tea plantation in the district of Ranau, Sabah has now expanded into a popular holiday destination as well in the state both for local and foreign tourists.

Located in one the oldest rainforests in the world, with the picturesque Mt Kinabalu, Malaysia's first World Heritage Site, for its background, Sabah Tea Garden is known for its 100 per cent organic tea without the use of any chemicals.

Today, managed by Sabah Tea Sdn Bhd's Ipoh based unit, Yee Lee Corporation Bhd, Sabah Tea Garden has grown into an ideal place for nature lovers and those wanting to relax away from the busy city life, offering various holiday stay and tour packages customized for its visitors.

The "tea garden" encompasses an area measuring 6,200 acres and is 2,272 ft from sea level. From the total area, only 1,200 acres are used for the cultivation of tea and tourism activities while the rest remains a tropical forest rich with flora and fauna.


Boost For Rapid Penang

Extract from The Star (31/01/11)

PENANG: Rapid Penang is expected to receive RM120mil in allocations for its new depots, hubs, terminals and buses this year.

The arrival of 200 new buses scheduled for the end of the year will facilitate greater connectivity for passengers both on the island as well as the mainland.

These Government Transforma­tion Programme (GTP)’s Urban Public Transport National Key Results Area (NKRA) initiatives are the government’s efforts to improve public transport in cities beyond the Klang Valley.

“We are targeting a ridership of four million per month when the 200 new buses arrive,” said Rapid Penang Sdn Bhd chief executive officer Azhar Ahmad.


Penang Government Wants More Quality Homes Built

Extract from The Star (31/01/11)

GEORGE TOWN: The Penang Government will focus on providing affordable housing for the low to middle-income groups in the state this year.

Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said he would speak to developers about the need to construct houses costing not more than RM500,000.

He said the newly-formed state housing board would work closely with developers to achieve the goal.

“Low-cost housing worth RM50,000 is no longer tangible as the younger generation of professionals would like to invest in quality homes and the state intends to help them in this area,” Lim told the media at his office here after a courtesy call by Penang Chinese Chamber of Commerce (PCCC) officials.


Bus Operators Have Until Feb 28 To Move To New Terminal

Extract from The Star (31/01/11)

Klang Valley commuters have to make do with the temporary terminal in Bukit Jalil as the authorities have given bus operators until Feb 28 to relocate to the new Tasik Selatan Integrated Transport Terminal (BTS-ITT).

The decision to extend the deadline was made by the Government to give the express bus operators more time to relocate.

It is also to prevent the public from getting confused during the heavy travel demand period around Chinese New Year.

The extension is also to enable new ticket counters to be constructed at the terminal.
he preferred location: The Bukit Jalil station is still as busy as ever.


2010 Exciting For Ismail

Extract from The Star (31/01/11)

Iskandar Regional Development Authority's third CEO Ismail Ibrahim talks to StarBiz about his experience in Irda since taking office a year ago

StarBiz: Has the year (2010) been kind to you?

Ismail: It was a very exciting year for me and now I'm into my second year.

When I first took office my main focus was to pay attention to Iskandar's development which is aligned to our Comprehensive Development Plan, which as you know is the foundation for the growth of Iskandar.

We have developed a strong collaboration among all our stakeholders both at the federal and state levels and the private sector.


ECER Promotes Economic Zone At Gulf Forum

Extract from The Star (31/01/11)

ABU DHABI: Access to a wealth of investment opportunities awaits investors in Malaysia’s East Coast Economic Region (ECER)-Special Economic Zone (SEZ), dubbed by its promoters as the “Klang Valley of the East Coast”.

The benefits of investing in the SEZ, as well as in the wider ECER, were highlighted by ECER Development Council chief executive officer Datuk Jebasingam Issace John during the Invest Malaysia 2011 Forum targeted at investors from the Gulf region here yesterday.

The ECER-SEZ recently received investments totaling RM620mil from Dubai-based Oilfields Supply Center Ltd for a joint venture in the development of a common-user supply base which will be operational in 2013.

“There’s already a strong oil and gas presence, with the petrochemical clusters in Kertih and Gebeng. We’d like to build upon this, among others,” he told the Malaysian media ahead of the forum.


Challenging Times Ahead For Iskandar

Extract from The Star (31/01/11)

JOHOR BARU: Iskandar Regional Development Authority (Irda) chief executive officer Ismail Ibrahim says attracting new investments to Iskandar Malaysia is going to get tougher and more challenging.

He said although the country's first economic growth corridor was making significant progress and moving in the right direction, albeit uncertainties in the global economy, Iskandar could not afford to rest on its laurel.

“The intensity of the competition is becoming greater and we have to prove our skeptics wrong that Iskandar is indeed taking shape as planned,'' Ismail said in an interview with StarBiz.

He said the challenge was not only in attracting new investments to Iskandar, but also receiving financial support from the Government for infrastructure development projects.


Glomac Rides On Niche Projects

Extract from The Star (31/01/11)

PETALING JAYA: Glomac Bhd, a medium-sized property outfit, is on an exciting growth path as it undertakes more niche developments with fast turnaround time in Greater Kuala Lumpur.

The company has a broad range of affordable to higher-end projects. Its 13 ongoing projects include townships in Sungai Buloh and Rawang in Selangor and in Kota Tinggi, Johor, as well as some niche residential and commercial projects in Greater Kuala Lumpur.

For the six months ended Oct 31, 2010, its revenue surged 98.5% to RM267.2mil while pre-tax profit rose 87.5% to RM61.5mil. Net profit attributable to shareholders grew 78.4% to RM31.4mil.

In a recent note, ECM Libra Research said Glomac was on the brink of higher earnings and land bank.


Mah Sing Looks Bullish In Medium Term

Extract from Business Times (31/01/11)

SHARE prices on Bursa Malaysia extended their consolidation last week in tandem with the weak regional stock markets. The FTSE Bursa Malaysia Kuala Lumpur Composite Index (FBM KLCI) continued to stay above its critical support of 1,500 points when it closed at 1,521.89 on Friday.

Key heavyweight index-linked counters once again led the market consolidation. The FBM KLCI hit an intra-week high of 1,550.95 on Monday and then touched an intra-week low of 1,505.36 on Friday, giving a trading range of 45.59 points.

The benchmark index posted a week-on-week loss of 25.54 points, or 1.65 per cent.

On the foreign front, the New York Stock Exchange remained relatively firm. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed marginally lower at 11,823.70 on Friday, giving a week-on-week loss of 48.14 points, or 0.41 per cent.