Iskandar to become Malaysia’s Shenzhen


With the backing of Singapore and Malaysia’s governments, Iskandar is anticipated to transform into a thriving production and technology hub just like what happened to China’s Shenzhen, Hong Kong’s neighbour, reported The Financial Times.

Prime Minister Najib Razak said Malaysia, particularly Iskandar, can have a mutually beneficial relationship with Singapore, similar to New Jersey’s close ties with Manhattan.

Ravi Menon, the Head of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), has also proposed that the city-state and Iskandar be considered as a single economic zone that would give investors an “integrated production and services base” in the ASEAN region.

3Policymakers see the possibility of businesses being co-located in Iskandar and Singapore,” said Singapore Management University Associate Professor Eugene Tan.

“We just don’t have the land here and Iskandar is close enough for companies to have manufacturing there but the finance and R&D in Singapore.”

In fact, some Singapore companies have already relocated a portion of their operations in Iskandar. For instance, a firm involved in machine tools reconditioning transferred its workshop to a hangar in the Malaysian region.

“Our sales office is 30 minutes from here, in Singapore. There’s a lot of walk-in customers and we can bring them here to test the machines,” said its Manager Angela Pang.

“Our rental in Singapore was going to expire and this is cheaper,” she noted, explaining that the rental cost of commercial space in the city-state is more expensive than those in Iskandar by about three times.

However, real estate investments in Iskandar have recently plummeted due to worries over a supply glut of residential properties.

In the year to March 2017, overall property investment there plunged to only US$86 million compared to US$1.4 billion during the corresponding period in 2013.

“The drop in volumes between now and 2013 is highly noticeable,” noted Real Capital Analytics Director for Asia Pacific, Petra Blazkova.

“Our view is that it stemmed from an imbalance between the supply of land or property and demand from real estate investors.”

One major factor behind the oversupply is the fact that China’s Country Garden is building a massive development on four reclaimed island off the coast of Johor.

Known as Forest City, the US$100 billion development is forecasted to have a population of 700,000 people in about 20 years.

However, Beijing’s restrictions on money outflows has affected the apartment sales in the project as most of its buyers are from China. The developer even closed down its sales galleries in the country and is planning to attract other buyers from other nations.

Iskandar Regional Development Authority’s (IRDA) CEO Ismail Ibrahim also admitted that there is a “temporary” oversupply of homes in the region. Nevertheless, he is confident that the excess units will be eventually absorbed by the market as Iskandar’s economy is anticipated to flourish.

Among top properties in Iskandar Malaysia are:

1. Meridin Medini

2. Meridin SOVOs

Image sourced from Iskandar Properties


How To Find A Good Property Negotiator



Choosing and buying the right property as well as selling your own property have never been an easy task, especially if you are doing so without engaging in any form of help. The process of buying and selling properties is not only time-consuming but also requires lots of your energy as many of the tasks that a property negotiator would usually do for you, will require your own effort in order to be done. Buying and selling without a negotiator might pose as a challenge for many, which is exactly why you need a property negotiator, particularly a good one.

When it comes to choosing property negotiators, here are a few things to keep in mind:

  1. He/She Must Have Your Best Interests At Heart

The property negotiator must have your best interests in mind, above all, instead of trying to hastily close the deal. This ensures not only the property negotiator’s good reputation, but also encourages repeat buyers and recommendations.


  1. He/She Must Have Closed Many Properties’ Deals

The property negotiator must have had worked for at least a few years, preferably full time. More closings are equivalent to more experiences.


  1. He/She Must Be Online

Property negotiators in today’s digital landscape must be internet savvy for most buyers tend to search for properties online first. Therefore, agents today must be skilled in email, text as well as be available online to both buyers and sellers.


  1. He/She Must Be Knowledgeable

In order to find out whether or not the property negotiator you are about to engage is a seasoned one, remember to ask questions about real estate in which you might have probably learned beforehand. They should be experienced in their field so as to guide you through the complexities of the buying and selling process.


  1. He/She Must Be Able To Communicate Clearly

Communication is undoubtedly vital in any relationship, especially so when you are considering to buy or sell properties in which involve a lot of money. Hence, make sure your property negotiator is fully aware of your requirements.


We are here to hear, to understand and to keep everything simple for you. Best of all, we fit all of the requirements listed above. Contact us today for a non-obligation discussion!

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Johor industrial recorded RM14.9bil investment


According to Johor Menteri Besar, Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin, between January and May this year Johor recorded RM14.9 billion in industrial investment.

He said the statistics, issued by the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (Mida), put Johor in first place, followed by Sarawak and Pahang in second and third places, respectively.

As revealed by local media reports, the total has also surpassed the total investment of RM14 billion recorded last year.

“This shows that investors, both local and foreign, continue to be interested in investing in Johor and make the state the choice investment destination,” Khaled said.

He added that the strong investment figures show that Johor is a prosperous and peaceful state with all the necessary infrastructure, factors that help attract businesses to the state.

“The state government will ensure the continuity of this positive elements in its efforts to make Johor the choice destination for investors. We will also continue to focus on promoting investment opportunities,” Khaled said.

He was speaking at the opening of the state-level exporters forum organised by the Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (Matrade).

The forum is one of Matrade’s initiatives to encourage local companies to expand their businesses internationally and serves as a platform to engage entrepreneurs and exporters on issues and problems related to international trade.


Farah Wahida, Editor of PropertyGuru, wrote this story. To contact her about this or other stories email

Signs of property bubble noted


A leading U.K. organisation has said a bubble may be forming in the Philippines property market, although while the fast-increasing rate of household lending has raised alarms in both Thailand and Malaysia, it does not necessarily think it is problematic in the latter two countries.

The Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) said in its quarterly report commissioned by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) titled Economic Insight: Southeast Asia, said: “Strong growth underpinned by low interest rates in the Philippines is stoking fears of a property bubble in Manila.

“Inflation is relatively low and economic policymakers are keen to maintain rapid growth; however, property prices in Manila’s financial district, already at a record high, are projected to rise 8 percent this year.”

CEBR also cited an International Monetary Fund (IMF) warning of a domestic asset price bubble, which includes real estate.

The think tank also noted how Southeast Asian countries have showed rising consumption, and over the past four years, the largest economies “have shown a clear trend of putting aside less as they spend more”.

Rising consumption, the report stated, highlights the risks of promoting lending.

It also noted a “striking similarity” in the present situation in Southeast Asia with what transpired during the 1997 Asian Financial Crisis.

In particular, it spotlighted on how investors have again been turning emerging markets, such as those in Southeast Asia, in search for higher yields, with interest rates in the region still better than those in advanced economies.

“A property bubble is often linked to a rise in household debt as it expands the collateral of would-be borrowers, a pattern evident in the U.S. and U.K. property markets in the run-up to the global financial crisis,” the report said.

Andrew Batt, International Group Editor of PropertyGuru Group, wrote this story. To contact him about this or other stories email

Foreign investments to change Johor’s landscape, says Sultan

Jul 4, 2014


The Sultan of Johor has welcomed the entry of more foreign investments into the state, which he said would not only change the landscape of Johor but also provide economic benefits and job opportunities for the people.

Notably, Johor’s Sultan Ibrahim Ismail Sultan Iskandar has consented to officiate at the groundbreaking ceremony for the Princess Cove project in Tanjung Puteri that is being developed by China-based developer R&F Properties Co. Ltd, reported Bernama.

Sultan Ibrahim said the project is poised to become a landmark that the people could be proud of in Johor Baharu.

“I am thankful to R&F Properties as the company has the confidence in the investment potential in Johor Baharu. It is hoped that this investment would generate profits to the company,” he said.

Located opposite Singapore’s Woodland immigration complex, Princess Cove is within close proximity to the Johor Causeway. It is set to be a new landmark in Johor Baharu, similar to what Petronas Twin Towers is to Kuala Lumpur.

The project will feature twin skyscrapers, with one boasting a five-star hotel while the other with a grade A office tower.

The entire development is set to be completed in five phases until 2022.

Specifically, the first phase involved the development of 15 blocks of luxury condominiums with 3,200 units and a three-storey shopping that is slated to be completed in 2017, said R&F Properties Director-General, Sales and Marketing, Fairus Cheung.

Listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, R&F Properties acquired a 46.94ha of sea-fronting prime land for RM4.5 billion, in a deal that involved the Johor royalty.

The groundbreaking ceremony was also attended by Johor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin, Tunku Mahkota of Johor Tunku Ismail Idris, R&F Properties Chairman Li Sze Lim and its Chief Executive Zhang Li.

Image Source:


Farah Wahida, Editor of PropertyGuru, wrote this story. To contact her about this or other stories email

Property gallery for Johor coastal town attracts 10,000 visitors


Jun 25, 2014

The opening of the sales gallery for R&F Princess Cove, a 116-acre integrated coastal township by China-based developer R&F Properties, has received overwhelming response with more than 10,000 guests in attendance last Saturday.

Visitors were not left empty handed as they were provided with free gifts, as well as food and drinks. They were also entertained by a Cosplay event, a mini concert by Malaysian Youtuber Joyce Chu, live band performances and a fireworks display as finale.

The guests were also awed by the huge property gallery, which measures 45,000 sq ft, and its modern resort-style design. Apart from its elevated garden decks, music fountain, infinity pool and private wharf, the nearby 3km long beach further boosted its appeal

Located near the Johor Bahru-Woodlands Checkpoint and the upcoming MRT link between Singapore and Malaysia, Princess Cove aims to become a renowned destination for leisure and living.

R&F Properties also hails it as a HOPSCA development. Pronounced as Hao-bu-si-ka, the term stands for Hotels, Offices, Parks, Shopping malls, Convention centres and Apartments.

Furthermore, registration for luxury homes in Phase I will soon commence.

Notably, R&F Properties has more than 100 projects under its belt, including over 14 International 5-star Hotels built in collaboration with Hyatt, Marriott, The Ritz-Carlton and InterContinental Hotels Group.

Apart from luxury homes and malls, the Chinese company also has developed more than 26 Grade-A office towers, including Tianjin Guandong Building, one of the ten highest buildings in China.


Image Source:

Farah Wahida, Editor of PropertyGuru, wrote this story. To contact her about this or other stories email

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