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ETP will boost property mart, say developers [11-03-2011]  
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Property developers are upbeat that they will do better with hints of better market conditions ahead due to the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP).

More developers will be launching new projects nationwide in the second half of the year, findings by the Real Estate and Housing Developer's Association Malaysia (Rehda) showed.

These include terrace houses, condominiums and apartments priced from RM100,000 to RM500,000, and service apartments, semi-detached houses and bungalows worth RM500,000 to more than RM1 million.

The survey showed developers will raise the prices for new houses by an average 13 per cent this year.

Some have indicated their prices may rise by 20 per cent to 50 per cent, depending on the locality of the projects.

Rehda president Datuk Seri Michael Yam said while the housing market may have strong underlying demand due to the country's demography, young population, and now the ETP, the pressure of increased building materials, labour costs and land prices pose huge challenge to industry players.

The survey had 135 developers responding to market conditions in 2010 and their outlook for 2011.

Fifty-nine per cent of them said the ETP is expected to add value to their developments.

Rehda national council member NK Tong said despite the price rise, he believes demand for new houses will be higher.

"People will buy in anticipation of a brighter economy. People who are trying to predict the property market will have to view the local and global economy, which for this year looks positive," Tong said.

The ETP aims to generate RM76 billion for the country by 2015. Since the launch in October 2010, the government had announced 60 projects, including the Mass Rapid Transit and the greater Kuala Lumpur Light Rapid Transit extension.

The government is aiming for a population boom in Greater Kuala Lumpur/Klang Valley (Greater KL/KV) to 10 million by 2020 from the current six million, with foreigners making up some 20 per cent of the population. Tong said the additional 1.6 million foreigners expected in Greater KL/KV by 2020 from the current 540,000 will help boost property sales.

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