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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

AP Land to complete resort project despite March 11 quake

KUALA LUMPUR: Asia Pacific Land Bhd (AP Land) plans to complete the Shiki Niseko project in Niseko, Japan by the end of 2012 despite the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in the country.

AP Land joint managing director Low Su Ming said the ground-breaking for the project would be held next week.

“We have awarded the contract for the construction of the project and locked in the cost. So, we won't be affected by the expected increase in the cost of construction materials in Japan as a result of the reconstruction of the devastated areas caused by the earthquake and tsunami. Despite the catastrophe, we are not overly concerned over the impact to our project as the disaster area is located more than 600km away from Niseko.

“We are still confident in the vast untapped potential of Niseko as an international ski resort to cater to the growing affluence in various Asian markets,” Low added.

The company would be organising road shows to Australia and other target markets, she said, adding that the buyers were from Hong Kong, Singapore, China, Malaysia and Australia.

Shiki Niseko is AP Land's maiden development in Japan. The project comprises 69 units of one, two and three bedroom high-end residences with commercial component in the heart of the ski village, known as central Hirafu.

About 60% of the project have been booked and of this, 30% of the buyers have paid the downpayment.

While most investors had taken a long-term position and were prepared to ride out any short-term volatility, two to three buyers might pull out from the deal due to concerns about radiation from the quake-stricken nuclear plant in Fukushima, she said.

To address the concerns, AP Land had invited property consultancy LJ Hooker Niseko Resort branch manager Derek Kennewell to brief the project's buyers and the media on the actual situation in Niseko.

According to Kennewell, Niseko is located more than 600km from the disaster zone and there is no threat of radioactivity contamination.

By The Star

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