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Penang Property Summit 2015 to address market challenges

PENANG will witness a gathering of property experts and industry players at the inaugural Penang Property Summit 2015. It will be held from Jan 9 to 11 at the sPICE Arena Penang (Pisa).

The summit is seen as a timely event, given the rapid pace of property development on the island and growing concerns about rising prices and the environment.

Themed “Managing Future Trends and Challenges”, the summit comprises two events: the Penang International Property Conference 2015, held on the first two days, and the Penang International Property Expo (PIP) 2015. The conference is expected to draw around 200 people and the three-day expo, 30,000.

The summit, co-organised by Penevents Sdn Bhd and the Penang government, will be officiated by Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng.

“The primary focus of the summit is to provide a forum for industry players, related trade associations and key public officials to network and broaden their knowledge on issues and trends relating to the industry,” says Ong Ban Seang, the summit’s event director as well as managing director of Penevents. “With changes evolving both locally and abroad, and with business environments changing dramatically, it is imperative that practitioners adapt to the changes and maintain their competitive edge.”

Lim will deliver a keynote address at the conference and participate in a roundtable discussion with CEOs of Penang property developers, entitled “Meeting Future Challenges in the Penang Property Scene”. It will be moderated by Ho Kay Tat, CEO of The Edge Media Group.

Other key topics to be presented at the conference include “A Regional Perspective of the Property Market” by Chia Boon Kuah, president of Real Estate Developers’ Association of Singapore; “What and Where to Look for Investments in Penang” by Datuk Lee Kah Choon, director of Invest Penang; and “The Malaysian Property Scene – Prospects and Challenges” by Datuk Jerry Chan, chairman of Real Estate and Housing Developers’ Association Malaysia (Rehda).

Panel discussions at the conference will be moderated by Penang state executive councillor for housing, town and country planning Jagdeep Singh Deo and vice-president of Fiabci Malaysia Michael Geh.

“Many of the topics chosen for the conference are actually issues of deep concern facing the industry, such as the need to meet the growing demand for affordable housing in the state,” says Ong. “The panel discussion on Penang’s property outlook could throw up lively debates pertaining to the government’s cooling measures, and the concerns regarding the increasing rejection rate of housing loan applications.”

According to Jagdeep, the summit is going to be an occasion for all stakeholders to come together and voice out the issues they are facing. “For the first time, you will have an exhibition with a conference. We want to address every issue, globally, in one summit. Malaysia has seen increases in property values, especially in the last four years in the four major areas — the Klang Valley, Johor, Selangor and Penang,” he says.

“[There’s been] a slowdown … in the number of transactions conducted in these four urban states between the last quarter of 2013 and the first quarter of 2014. But it should be noted that the decline in Penang is the least … at only 0.3%.”

The Penang Property Summit 2015’s organising committee include stakeholders from both the public and private sectors.

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This article first appeared in The Edge Malaysia Weekly, on December 29, 2014 - January 04, 2015.

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