OCR Group to launch ‘tallest development’ in Kuantan

PETALING JAYA: OCR Group Bhd aims to launch Vertex Kuantan, its second project in the city, by the first half of 2023, said group managing director Billy Ong Kah Hoe.

The mixed development, dubbed the “tallest development in Kuantan”, will have a gross development value (GDV) of RM268 million.

Meanwhile, Ong (pix) said the group had also seen a healthy take-up rate of 85% for the first phase of its affordable housing project, PRIYA Scheme Kuantan.

“Kuantan is evidently one of the most vibrant locations in the East Coast of Peninsular Malaysia, with major investments and industrial developments such as Malaysia-China Kuantan Industrial Park as well as the upcoming East Coast Rail Link.

“With the rapid urbanisation in Kuantan, we believe that this project not only provides us access into the up-and-coming property hotspot in Kuantan, but also supports the state’s home ownership drive among the masses,” he said in a statement.

The PRIYA Scheme Kuantan is a 50:50 joint venture between OCR’s subsidiary O&C Properties (Kuantan) Sdn Bhd and Yayasan Pahang.

The development is currently the largest affordable housing scheme in Kuantan.

The RM166 million GDV project comprises 978 units of single-storey terrace houses and 146 units of single-storey semi-detached homes starting from RM137,000. The project is slated to be completed in the second quarter of 2021.

OCR to launch RM268m GDV Vertex Kuantan project in 1H20

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 21 — Boutique property developer OCR Group Bhd is targeting to launch its second Kuantan project, named Vertex Kuantan, in the first half of 2020. The RM268 million gross development value (GDV) mixed development will be the…

First environmentally oil palm effluent treatment plant opens in Pahang

KUANTAN, Oct 9 — Pahang has become the first state in Malaysia to have an environmentally friendly effluent treatment plant for palm oil factory from Japan. Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Wan Rosdy Wan Ismail said the technology developed by I.H.I…

Domestic construction contract awards slump in Q3

PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian construction sector saw an 81% year-on-year (yoy) slump in domestic contract awards in the third quarter (Q3) of 2019 to RM1.1 billion, bringing the nine-month sum to RM9.2 billion or a 36% decline compared with the corresponding period of 2018.

And now, the sector is pinning hopes on Budget 2020 with potential announcements on infrastructure projects, possibly the Johor Baru-Singapore Rapid Transit System Link (RTS), MRT3 and Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High Speed Rail (HSR), according to HLIB Research.

Elsewhere, contracts that are expected to be rolled out are six bridge deals with a combined value of RM2.4 billion under the Sarawak Coastal Road.

“Other material developments related to the sector are the ramp-up of LRT3 project (RM16 billion) in Q4 19 and potential signing of a PDP (project delivery partner) agreement for the Penang Transport Master Plan by year-end (RM24 billion).”

The research house said the decline in contract awards was due to smaller average contract size of RM90 million (-22% quarter on quarter, -59% year on year) compounded by contraction in number of contracts awarded which totalled 12 in the third quarter of 2019.

Infrastructure jobs made up 31% of domestic contracts for the nine-month 2019 period with the balance from building jobs. The decline in contract value and lower proportion of infrastructure works was attributable mainly to holding back or downsizing of infrastructure projects post 14th General Election (GE14).

“Year to date, all Sarawak-related contracts are infrastructure works which testify to our view that momentum of project flows in Sarawak is gaining traction as the next state elections must be held before September 2021. Infrastructure contracts that are expected to roll out in Q4 19 are six bridge contracts with combined value of RM2.4 billion under Sarawak Coastal Road,” said HLIB.

Meanwhile, foreign contract awards in third quarter 2019 spiked to RM918 million while cumulative nine-month 2019 foreign contracts surged more than sixfold due to domestic contractors shifting focus overseas post-GE14 and absence of foreign contracts in second quarter 2018.

HLIB Research remains “neutral” on the construction sector despite the positive news flow on several project revivals, including the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL), Bandar Malaysia and potentially MRT3.

“We believe the worst is over for the construction sector but this has been largely reflected by the share price rally YTD with the Bursa Malaysia Construction Index up 31%.”

IJM Corp Bhd remains its top pick in the large-cap space as a beneficiary of the ECRL via construction contracts and the positive spillover effect to Kuantan Port (60% stake) and Malaysia-China Kuantan Industrial Park (20% stake).

“Within the mid-small-cap space, we like Sunway Construction Group Bhd (SunCon) as a well-managed pure construction play that is able to bid competitively within the increasing open tender landscape.”

Straits Inter Logistics expands bunkering services to Lumut Port

PETALING JAYA: Straits Inter Logistics Bhd expanded its bunkering services into Lumut Port, following an agreement signed between its 55%-owned unit Tumpuan Megah Development Sdn Bhd and the port’s operator, Lumut Maritime Sdn Bhd today.

The agreement has a contract period of one year from Oct 1, 2019 with the option to renew for not more than one year, upon mutual agreement.

A bunkering anchorage area namely Pit-Stop Bunker Hub @ Lumut will be set up for the business venture.

Under the agreement, Tumpuan Megah will have the exclusive right to operate, manage and provide bunkering services located at or within Lumut Port limit including but not limited to jetties/wharfs, anchorage area and the designated Pit-stop Bunker area.

Straits group managing director Datuk Sri Ho Kam Choy said the tie-up with Lumut Maritime was part of the company’s overall strategy to establish a collaboration with strategic ports in Malaysia to bunker for vessels within their port limits.

“We believe that the opportunity to collaborate with Lumut Maritime will bring forth new dimensions to both parties’ infrastructures which will allow both parties to tap the vast potential in the bunkering industry.

“The tie-up with Lumut Maritime definitely marks an important milestone for Straits for its expansion in the bunkering business,” he said.

Currently, Tumpuan Megah operates in eight ports in Malaysia, including Pasir Gudang Port, Tanjung Pelepas Port, Johor Baru Port, Kuantan Port, Kemaman Port, Kuala Terengganu Port, Labuan Port and Miri Port.

To recap, Straits had completed its acquisition of a 55% stake in Tumpuan Megah in September 2018 in an effort to expand its business footprint. The acquisition of Tumpuan Megah enlarged Straits’ fleet from two vessels to nine, with a total capacity of 12 million litres.

Pahang to receive investments worth RM1.38b from China

KUANTAN, Sept 20 — Pahang will be getting RM1.38 billion of investments from China via a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed with six companies from the country. A Mentri Besar press secretary’s office media statement here today said the…

Marriott International sees huge untapped potential in Malaysia’s tourism industry

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 16 — Marriott International, the United States-based multinational diversified hospitality company that manages and franchises a broad portfolio of hotels and related lodging facilities, sees a huge untapped potential in…

Marriott International sees huge untapped potential in Malaysia’s tourism industry

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 16 — Marriott International, the United States-based multinational diversified hospitality company that manages and franchises a broad portfolio of hotels and related lodging facilities, sees a huge untapped potential in…

Kuantan Flour Mills in the red in Q3

PETALING JAYA: Kuantan Flour Mills Bhd (KFM) recorded a net loss of RM511,000 for the third quarter ended June 30, 2019 compared with a net profit of RM33,000 in the same period of last year, attributed to higher raw material and production overhead cost.

However, its revenue rose 31.7% to RM15.13 million from RM11.49 million previously, due to continuous improvement in wheat flour sales.

For the nine-month period, KFM’s net loss narrowed to RM1.73 million from RM2.36 million in the same period a year ago, while revenue jumped 55.7% to RM42.19 million from RM27.09 million.

The group expects upon commissioning the new production line during the financial year, its production efficiency will further improve, thereby enhancing its financial performance.

VEWC finances the largest bauxite mine in Malaysia

SUBANG JAYA: Private investment firm Via East West Capital (VEWC) has sealed a memorandum of understanding with The One Minerals Mining Sdn Bhd (TOMM), where VEWC would provide TOMM staged funding of US$350 (RM1.47 billion) for 7,000 acres of bauxite mining area in Johor.

The first tranche of funding would be US$50 million for 1,000 acres of bauxite mine.

This project is going to be the largest mining project in this country. It is expected to be lucrative and would provide a big boost to the country’s export income. This world-class mine is expected to generate around 500,000 metrics tons of bauxite per month or 6 million metrics tons annually.

The main market for bauxite is China. Bauxite prices have remained historically strong at a time when other commodity prices have fallen.

The bauxite mine would be operated, engineered, procured and constructed by TOMM in Johor. Mining for bauxite is simple, requiring little more than stripping back topsoil to reveal bauxite ore. The bauxite forms blankets typically between 1 and 6m, but in places up to 10m thick. Once the ore is extracted the top soil is easily re-established and the land restored.

TOMM plans to increase the mining area to a total of 7,000 acres over the next five years.

The project would be financed by the VEWC, which provides real time and insight investment details to all their investors directly, without going through third party. Investment information of the investors are securely stored with VEWC private node block technology, which is bulletproof and unhackable.

In recent years, bauxite mines near Kuantan came under deep scrutiny by local residences, media and relevant government agencies due to its poor environmental track records.

TOMM plans to remove the stigma associated with bauxite mining and is committed to be an environmental-friendly mining company. Equipped with VEWC latest vessel and GPS tracking technology, TOMM’s monitoring center would have 24 hours satellite surveillances to assure green mining practices.

TOMM has also plans for mining areas which have turned non-viable for bauxite mining. These plots of waste mining land would be turned into solar energy farms, which would supply clean energy to the rakyat.