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Asia offers bright prospects for real estate investment, say industry leaders

KUALA LUMPUR: Asia, including Malaysia, offers bright prospects for real estate investment and development, say industry leaders at the 11th Forbes Global CEO Conference.

Chao Teng-Hsiung, chairman of leading Taiwan developer Farglory Group, said real estate players were now focusing on Asia following the economic problems in the US and debt crisis in Europe.

He said the players were attracted by Asia's steady growth in gross domestic product.

"Asia offers good prospects for development and the future is bright," said Chao, who was one of the panelists at a session entitled, "Scouting locations", here on Wednesday, Sept 14.

Chao said Farglory Group has a presence in US and China and was now expanding to the Middle East.

He said the real estate segment accounted for about 60% of a economy of each country.

"After 10-20 years of development, the returns are still higher than stocks. Real estate is something that is worth investing in," he said.

Chao said China offered enormous opportunities in the real estate industry arising from urbanisation, with 400 million people moving into city areas in a few years from about 240 million currently.

Another panelist, Regent Hotels and Resorts chairman Steven Pan, said real estate players, especially from Brazil, Russia, India and China (BRIC), were scouting for locations in emerging markets for expansion.

Pan said capital from from BRIC economies has created opportunities and they had become important investors in emerging markets and neighouring regions.

The industry leaders are in consensus that real estate players must add value to their products, embark on branding, understand the cycle of development and integrate technology with the products to ensure long-term growth. — Bernama

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