Leading today’s roundup, Florida’s state pension fund is betting $100 million on Asian real estate via a vehicle of Boston-based AEW Capital Management. Also in the headlines, Macau’s Galaxy Entertainment Group is coming to terms with a cleanup of the Philippine island of Boracay that has put its planned $500 million resort on hold. There’s also news in Northeast China as home prices heat up on the border with North Korea, and overseas buyers are addicted to luxury flats in the prime neighbourhoods of Bangkok. And China’s state-owned construction giant is lending its services to develop a piece of Myanmar that’s twice the size of Singapore, so read on for all the details.
Florida State Board of Administration (SBA) has become the latest US state pension fund to commit to AEW Capital Management’s third pan-Asia value-added fund. Florida SBA says it has for the first time invested in the AEW Asia fund series, putting a $100m (€83.2m) into AEW Value Investors Asia III.
The move is to help the pension fund to diversify its real estate portfolio, it said. Most of the capital for the fund will be invested in office and retail assets with potentially some in residential. The fund will be mostly investing in the gateway markets of Hong Kong, Singapore, Shanghai, Seoul and Sydney. Read more>>
Macau casino operator Galaxy Entertainment Group, which posted a 36 percent jump in earnings on Thursday, says it supports the Philippines government’s move to temporarily close Boracay for environmental reasons and will seek further clarification after announcing plans for a US$500 million resort on the island.
The Philippines gaming regulator said at the end of April that the resort has been put on hold, and that Galaxy would need to convince President Rodrigo Duterte of its “advantages,” according to Reuters. Boracay is officially shut for six months for a clean up since April 26 after Duterte called the place a “cesspool.” Read more>>
Property prices in the city of Dandong have skyrocketed since North Korean leader Kim Jong Un visited Beijing in March, Chinese media reported. Housing prices in Dandong, in Northeast China’s Liaoning Province, have risen from RMB 3,000 (S$629) to RMB 5,000 per square metre and those in some areas even doubled, the Global Times said.
Housing prices in Xincheng district, a new housing area on the outskirts of Dandong, jumped 57 percent overnight, according to a report in the Securities Times, China Daily reported. Dandong is right across the Yalu River from Sinuiju, North Korea. Read more>>
In chic central Bangkok, a foreign buying binge is fueling a red-hot market for ultra-luxury real estate. At 98 Wireless, a luxury condo opened last March in the capital, one buyer from Hong Kong snapped up a $2.2 million apartment without more than a moment’s thought.
For the price of a cramped studio back home, the investor had bought an opulent two bedroom spread with Ralph Lauren furniture, three bathrooms outfitted with Carrera marble, butler service and a chauffeured Bentley limousine. Scenes like this have become more common in the Thai capital, where foreign money is pushing up prices at the top of the real estate market, even as developers struggle to sell more pedestrian properties. Read more>>
New Yangon Development Company (NYDC) on Monday signed a framework agreement with China Communications Construction Company (CCCC) under which the two parties will carry out the necessary surveys and studies needed to develop and implement a new city in Yangon, Myanmar.
NYDC is backed by the Yangon Regional Government, while CCCC is one of the largest international construction companies in the world. The total area of New Yangon City, encompassing Phase 1 and Phase 2, will cover 1,500 square kilometers. Under Phase 1, NYDC will develop 20,000 acres of land west of central Yangon across from Kyeemyindaing into an urban industrial district. Meanwhile, Phase 2 will stretch across from Dala to the Gulf of Martaban. Read more>>
Land reclamation is nothing new in Asia – China, Hong Kong and Japan have been at it since the 19th century – but it has recently reached epidemic proportions. Maritime ecosystems are abruptly transformed as natural islands are artificially conjoined with coastlines, natural shorelines are extended and artificial islands are built from scratch.
Cities on China’s coast reclaimed an average of 700 square kilometres of land – that’s about the size of Singapore – from the sea every year from 2006 to 2010 for new houses, industrial zones and ports. The 130 sq km of land that was reclaimed to build the new city of Nanhui was significant enough to reconfigure China’s national map, and the reclaimed land for the Caofeidian economic zone was twice the size of Los Angeles. Read more>>
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