MTEM worried developers in Perak may treat Bumiputera quota lightly

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21 February, KUALA LUMPUR – The Malay Economic Action Council (MTEM) is against the Perak government’s decision to allow housing developers to apply for properties under the Bumiputera quota to be released to other buyers within six months instead of 24 months previously.

Its chief executive officer, Ahmad Yazid Othman said the change would make developers even less serious in selling properties under the Bumiputera property category.

The Bumiputera property quota was imposed to correct long-standing economic disparities that have resulted in ethnically homogeneous housing areas and negatively impacted national unity, he said in a statement today.

The decision to slash the time limit to open unsold Bumiputera properties to non-Bumiputera was incorporated in the new Perak Housing Policy which comes into effect on April 1, 2019 as announced by Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Faizal Azumu on Feb 13.

However, the release of the unsold Bumiputera properties is subject to several conditions.

MTEM is concerned that after successfully reducing the holding period for the Bumiputera property quota, developers will then move to demonise the quota, claiming to be in a precarious financial state, Ahmad Yazid said.

Citing the National Property Information Centre, he said developers had oversupplied residential units valued at RM17.24 billion and property developers were trying to minimise their loss by being defensive on their profit margins.

In Johor, Ahmad Yazid said RM600 million were collected by a 7.5 per cent levy from developers who applied to release properties under the Bumiputera quota and 6,000 affordable houses under the Rumah Mampu Milik Johor were being planned to be built and sold to all Johoreans, regardless of race.

In MTEM’s view, Johor’s approach should be studied as conversion of levies is one of many methods that can be considered for nationwide implementation, said Ahmad Yazid.

MTEM believes that property quota for Bumiputera is a complex issue and any reform to it requires a careful study.

He said the reason why so much of the Bumiputera quota remained unsold was not only due to affordability but also unattractive locations.

Property quota for Bumiputera remains an essential tool to create ethnically diverse housing areas and that levies to release unsold properties under the Bumiputera quota will help fund the development of low-cost housing for all Malaysians, he said.

Ahmad Yazid said developers should start building houses that Malaysians really want and could afford instead of harping on Bumiputera quota.

– BERNAMA

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