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Saturday, September 24, 2011

Beijing developer to invest RM2b in Iskandar

KUALA LUMPUR: Iskandar Malaysia is set to receive some RM2 billion investments from a Beijing-based real estate developer.

Zhuoda Real Estate Group yesterday signed two memoranda of understanding with Iskandar Investment Bhd (IIB) to buy land and develop mixed residential and commercial projects in Medini, IIB's flagship development in Iskandar Malaysia.

The first deal is for the development of a residential project at Medini North, with Zhuoda buying a plot of land there for US$53 million (RM158 million) and investing another US$389 million (RM1.2 billion) to develop it.

The second one is for Zhuoda to lease 40,000 square metres for about US$24 million (RM70.8 million) and invest another US$169 million (RM520 million) to develop it.

"The definitive agreements are scheduled to be signed at the 3rd World Chinese Economic Forum in Kuala Lumpur on November 3," IIB said in a statement released in Beijing yesterday.

The project in Medini North, the leisure and tourism destination in Iskandar Malaysia, will be a joint venture between IIB's subsidiary Medini Iskandar Malaysia Sdn Bhd (MIMSB) and Zhuoda.

To be 80 per cent owned by Zhuoda, the joint-venture company will build residential units on about 73,000 sq m site.

IIB president and chief executive officer Datuk Syed Mohamed Syed Ibrahim said this is the first major investment by a Chinese property development company in Iskandar Malaysia.

"Bilateral trade between China and Malaysia is expected to rise to at least US$80 billion (RM239.7 billion) in 2011 and IIB's partnership with Zhuoda will further support the efforts by both governments in promoting two-way investment between the two countries," he said in the statement.

Zhuoda chief operating officer Yang Han Qing said the company, established 18 years ago, has a total asset value of US$7.8 billion (RM24.1 billion) and net asset value of US$6.6 billion (RM20.2 billion).

"This signing is a milestone for Zhuoda's initial overseas investment and a landmark in Zhuoda's history to become a globalised company," Yang said.

According to the Iskandar Regional Development Authority, Iskandar Malaysia has recorded a total cumulative investment of US$25 billion (RM75.96 billion) from November 2006 to June 30 2011. Foreign investments accounted for 40 per cent of this amount.

By Business Times

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