KUALA LUMPUR (July 23): CapitaLand Malaysia Mall Trust's (CMMT) net property income (NPI) in the second quarter ended June 30, 2021 (2QFY21) rose 36.5% to RM26.43 million from RM19.36 million, on higher gross revenue and lower rental relief for eligible tenants.

Net earnings per unit rose to 0.54 sen in the quarter, from 0.01 sen in 2QFY20.

The real estate investment trust (REIT) has declared a distribution of RM10.6 million or 0.5 sen per unit for the quarter, bringing the total in the cumulative six months ended June 30, 2021 (6MFY21) to 0.86 sen, from 1.01 sen in the same period last year.

While CMMT's gross rental income rose marginally by 0.7% to RM43.17 million from RM42.86 million, gross revenue saw a bigger gain of 5.7% to RM52.71 million from RM49.88 million thanks to a rebound in car park income.

Property operating expenses fell 13.9% to RM26.3 million year-on-year mainly due to lower utility expenses and reversal of provision for doubtful debts, the REIT said yesterday.

For 6MFY21, CMMT's NPI fell 12.6% to RM51.34 million from RM58.72 million.

Meanwhile, gross revenue fell 12.1% to RM109.37 million from RM124.41 million, as gross rental income fell due to the effort of rebalancing occupancy and rental reversions, while recovery of utilities and marketing communications (marcom) income also fell.

Property operating expenses fell 11.7% to RM58 million, due to lower utilities across the malls while other expenses like maintenance, marketing and administration also fell.

On prospects, CMMT maintained its cautious outlook on retail sector recovery for the near term. It is also moving beyond the retail sector following shareholders' nod in June, it added.

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