• “Ahead of the announcement, LBS wishes to make various proposals which it believes is crucial towards revitalising the property sector and is hopeful that the government will take these into account.”

PETALING JAYA, (Feb 17): LBS Bina Group Bhd today announced its wish list for Budget 2023 that will be tabled on Feb 24.

They include a revival of the Home Ownership Campaign (HOC), reduction of financing costs, resolving the foreign worker shortage and introduction of subsidies for raw material costs.

“LBS looks forward to the measures which will be announced by the government during Budget 2023. Ahead of the announcement, LBS wishes to make various proposals which it believes is crucial towards revitalising the property sector and is hopeful that the government will take these into account,” stated the developer in a media release.

Revival of HOC

To alleviate the public burden of home ownership, LBS urged the government to consider implementing additional measures to assist potential homeowners and “in particular first-time home buyers”.

“We request that the government consider the reintroduction of the HOC. The effectiveness of the HOC is widely evidenced during its implementation between 2019-2021. Hence, its reintroduction will help spur demand and further encourage homeownership, providing more options and price points for potential homebuyers,” said LBS.

Reduction of financing costs

The hike in interest rates throughout 2022 has led to properties becoming more expensive with the increase in mortgage rates.

“To assist with homeownership, especially for those in the lower-income households, we propose that the government introduce lower financing costs for mortgages or offer rebates of up to 10% to first-time homeowners to ensure that buying sentiment remains,” said LBS.

Fix the foreign worker shortage problem

“We are hopeful that the government will be able to deliver on their recent plan to allow entry of 500,000 foreign workers from 15 source countries in 2023 to overcome the shortage of labour in various sectors, especially the construction sector,” stated the developer.

It has been estimated that 700,000 foreign workers have left Malaysia due to Covid-19 pandemic. “Hence, we believe the number of foreign workers required to address the country’s immediate labour needs and to stimulate further economic growth is much higher.”

“We hope that Budget 2023 will include initiatives such as reducing foreign worker levy while introducing a more efficient and transparent application process to shorten the time for foreign worker approvals.

“We are aware that the government has recently introduced the Foreign Worker Recruitment Relaxation Plan and Illegal Immigrant Recalibration Plan 2.0 to expedite the approval process and we hope that the plan will live up to its purpose,” added LBS.

Subsidies for raw material costs

To alleviate the burden caused by rising prices, LBS called on the government to consider placing a price cap on the raw material costs to prevent an exorbitant increase in price. “With this, property players will be able to manage costs more efficiently.”

LBS Bina executive chairman Tan Sri Lim Hock San said: “We hope that Budget 2023 will provide a paradigm shift and deliver an upswing in property sentiment via stimulus packages. Budget 2023 is an opportunity for the government to assist the general public with alleviating the burden of everyday lives, which include homeownership.”

“The formation of a Unity Government will be able to create an environment that will attract more investors as well as promote economic growth and increase the well-being of the people.

With this, we look forward to the hovernment’s commitment in ensuring the provision of adequate, quality and affordable housing segments in order for more people to own their dream homes,” added Lim.

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