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Thursday, February 14, 2008

Putrajaya gets offer for office block

PUTRAJAYA Holdings Sdn Bhd, the master developer of the federal administrative capital, has received unsolicited offers and is close to selling en bloc a 12-storey office building in Precinct 3.

Chief executive officer Azlan Abdul Karim said two local parties and one foreign firm have offered to buy the entire block of 26 Boulevard, although it did not initially plan to sell the building. The block is estimated to worth over RM200 million, he said.

"We cannot be too sentimental as a developer. If the price is right we have to let it go. The first priority will be given to the local parties, but of course, price matters," he said in Putrajaya yesterday.

Azlan said a deal is likely to be concluded by the end of this quarter, or early next quarter.

The building, which uses double blazing glass as a key component, is designed to be energy-efficient as coating of the glass can absorb and then reradiate the sun's heat.

Measuring 48,000 sq m in gross floor area, Azlan said the building received its certificate of fitness last month and is already 90 per cent tenanted.

He said foreign investor interest in Putrajaya is growing although the company has yet to go into full swing in promoting properties in the city outside Malaysia.

Putrajaya Holdings made its first land sale to a foreign investor last July when it sold a 0.61ha site in Precinct 3 to Hong Kong-incorporated TRW Group for RM23.2 million.

It recently sold another piece of land around 1.2ha to local company, Malaysia Land Properties Sdn Bhd, which counts Hong Kong property tycoon Tan Sri David Chiu as a major shareholder.

Putrajaya Holdings is set to sign later this month its third land sale measuring 0.6ha, to a local company backed by foreign owners, Azlan said.

"Foreigners, like Chiu, are very bullish on the office space in Putrajaya. These property players believe that when they build the office lots here, people will eventually move from other more expensive cities like Singapore to Putrajaya," he said.

"Not only are the rentals here much cheaper compared to Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya is also a well-planned city with full government support. They believe in the city's potential in the long run, judging from other planned administrative cities like Washington DC," he added.

By New Straits Times (by Chong Pooi Koon)

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