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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Property market showing signs of recovery, albeit slowly

The Malaysian property market is showing signs of recovery, albeit at a slow pace, attributed to government spending and developers taking a cautious stance during the economic downturn.

"We are recording higher property volume, but lower value. The price is not plunging. It is just that the lower bracket of properties are selling now," said Dr Zailan Mohd Isa, director of the Valuation and Property Services Department under the Ministry of Finance.

According to data provided by the department, there were 23,256 unsold completed residential units in Malaysia as at March 31, 2.1 per cent lower than the same quarter last year.

In addition, there are 15,723 units with approved building plans - launched, but not constructed. Last year, the figure was 18,402 units.

For unsold properties under construction, there are 49,904 units versus 53,619 units last year.

"Due to the economy slowdown, developers have been cautious. Hence, there were less new products in the market. But overall, the performance in the sector remains healthy but most importantly, the government has to secure jobs, facilitate domestic spending and control inflation," he said.

Zailan was speaking at a media conference in Kuala Lumpur yesterday, in relation to the 20th National Real Estate Conference that will be held from August 11-12 at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre.

The event is hosted by the Association of Valuers and Property Consultants in Private Practice Malaysia and Institution of Surveyors Malaysia.

The conference will underline issues faced by the real estate sector, covering residential, office, retail, hotel and industrial markets.

Organising chairman Elvin Fernandez said the conference was timely and important to re-calibrate the fundamentals in the Malaysian real estate market. He said there is a self correction mechanism in the market now as the country's 2,000-odd developers are holding on to their launches.

By Business Times (by Sharen Kaur)

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