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HK developer sees opportunity in S’pore property, despite cooling measures

SINGAPORE — The Republic’s property market is still ripe with opportunities for developers, despite the Government’s cooling measures, executives of major Hong Kong-based developer Cheung Kong Property Holdings said yesterday.

SINGAPORE — The Republic’s property market is still ripe with opportunities for developers, despite the Government’s cooling measures, executives of major Hong Kong-based developer Cheung Kong Property Holdings said yesterday.

“Government policies are never a concern because for developers, we will just take that into account when we’re doing our numbers. If the risks are higher (because of the measures), we pay lower land prices. If the risks are low, then we can afford to pay a higher price for land,” said Mr Justin Chiu, executive director of Cheung Kong, founded by billionaire Li Ka-shing.

Mr Chiu’s comments are in contrast to those of local parties such as the Real Estate Developers’ Association of Singapore, which have been vocal in urging the Government to scale back certain measures to offer some reprieve to the subdued market.

Minister for National Development Lawrence Wong on Monday reiterated the Government’s stance not to roll back any cooling measures, saying it is “too early to declare victory”. Private home prices in Singapore surged more than 60 per cent after the global financial crisis in 2009 to peak in the third quarter of 2013. Since then, prices have declined 9.1 per cent in 10 consecutive quarters.

Mr Francis Wong, a director at Cheung Kong Real Estate, noted that between 2010 and last year, the economy has grown and income levels have also risen. “Affordability has become better. Future supply (of homes in Singapore) is reducing, we are quite confident that sales volume and prices will go up in the coming years,” he said.

The executives were in town to share details about their upcoming launch of Stars of Kovan — a mixed residential and commercial development at the junction of Upper Serangoon Road and Tampines Road.

The project will be launched later this month, with indicative pricing for the 390 residential apartments at about S$800,000 for one-bedders, S$1.2 million for two-bedders and S$1.5 million for three-bedders.

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