KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 14): The construction work for the retail mall at Bukit Bintang City Centre in Kuala Lumpur will start in January 2017 and is expected to be completed by 2021.

“The retail mall has a gross development value (GDV) of RM1.6 billion. The overall construction will take about four and a half years to complete,” said BBCC Development CEO Datuk Richard Ong at a press conference after the joint-venture (JV) agreement signing between BBCC Development shareholders, namely UDA Holdings Bhd, Eco World Development Group Bhd (EcoWorld) and the Employees Provident Fund (EPF), and Mitsui Fudosan (Asia) Pte Ltd, Japan’s largest real estate conglomerate and retail mall, to set up a JV company to own and operate the mall.

Under the agreement, Mitsui Fudosan will own 50% of the shares in the JV company while BBCC will own the remaining.

The 1.4 million sq ft retail mall will be developed under the Mitsui Shopping Park Lalaport brand, which features a hybrid mall combining indoor and outdoor lifestyle streets with high-end brands and F&B outlets.

Ong said the retail mall will comprise 350 retail units. Mitsui Fudosan will bring in new brands from Japan and the Far East.

EcoWorld chairman Tan Sri Liew Kee Sin said with Mitsui Fudosan spearheading the retail offerings at BBCC, the quality of the retail mall will be ensured not only in terms of design but also in its tenant mix and management standards.

The retail mall is part of the 19.4-acre iconic BBCC development which comprises serviced apartments, retail and entertainment components, hotel as well as offices. The 10-year development carries a GDV of RM8.7 billion.

Meanwhile, chairman of UDA Holdings and BBCC Development Datuk Mohd Shafei Abdullah said UDA will provide opportunities for bumiputera participation in the BBCC project with at least 50% of contract work to be awarded to qualified bumiputera contractors, consultants and suppliers.

“The retail mall will also have a Grand Bazaar featuring Malaysian-made goods such as handicrafts, souvenirs and art to [attract] foreign tourists. Bumiputera retailers with strong retail branding are welcomed to participate,” he added.

This story first appeared in pullout on Oct 14, 2016, which comes with The Edge Financial Daily every Friday. Download pullout here for free.

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