Greater transparency needed on housing and development data, says industry veteran

PETALING JAYA (April 17): MKH Bhd managing director Tan Sri Eddy Chen has called for greater transparency among stakeholders to share information and data that could help the property industry avoid a mismatch of property supply and demand.

Speaking at Facebook Live Fireside Chat entitled “Will the Malaysian property sector survive this mother of all crises?”, Chen who is also Perbadanan PRIMA Malaysia chairman said relevant information and data are needed and should be made available by the proposed centralised data system that is being set up.

“We need greater transparency, more information and this information to be centralized somewhere so that developers can know which product can sell and which one cannot in a certain area. It will help us to make investment decisions and avoid an oversupply situation in an area. 

"The data centralisation is much needed and I understand it is work in progress now,” Chen said, adding that data that are needed include those on land conversions, building plans, the number of units being built in an area, the number of projects coming up, among others.

"We have done feasibility studies but we lack certain data. We may think we are the only developer in an area but we suddenly  find that there are 10 others building in the same place."  

The other industry veterans who took part in the event held today were Rehda Malaysia president Datuk Soam Heng Choon and chairman of Rehda Institute Datuk Jeffrey Ng. The session was moderated by EdgeProp Malaysia managing director and editor-in-chief Au Foong Yee.

In response to that, Soam said a few government departments are involved in setting up of the centralised data system including the Statistics Department.

"When it is done, it will not only be useful to developers but everyone including purchasers. Hopefully in the next one or two years we will have it up,” said Soam.

"But especially during this Movement Control Order period, the experience of seeing literally sharp drops in revenue and sharp drops in cash flows is something I personally have never experienced before. If we can all get through this [with a lot of support from the authorities], it will be quite an experience,” said Ng.

The fireside chat which went live at 2pm on EdgeProp Malaysia’s Facebook page today garnered over 23,000 views.

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For the full report on the virtual Fireside Chat read the April 24, 2020 issue of pullout.

Missed our first Fireside Chat on ‘Undervalued Properties: Opportunities or Risk?’ which was held on April 10? Please click here to view the video.

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