Malaysian property sector lures Indian investors

Malaysia Property Inc (MPI) is looking at bringing in RM5 billion of Indian investments into Malaysia’s property segment with the first set of road shows held across three cities earlier this month.

"For a population of 28 million, we have infrastructure for 40 million people. About 16 million Malaysians live in their own houses. We have the infrastructure and the housing available and would like to have a larger number of Indians investing here," said Kumar Tharmalingam, Chief Executive Officer of MPI.

With more than two million persons of Indian origin residing in Malaysia, MPI is banking on the fact that cultural affinities coupled with strong economic rationale will attract more Indians at purchasing a second home in Malaysia.

"Also, from our perspective, it is difficult to bring in culturally different people. Given the large size of the Indian Diaspora, there is a certain comfort level," Kumar continued.

Despite the lack of high valuation and volatility of Malaysian property sector, MPI hopes that the offer of a lower entry-point, strong regulations and short travel times will attract more Indian investors.

Capital value appreciation for Malaysia’s residential properties normally ranges between five percent and seven percent year-on-year while annual rental value appreciation falls between eight percent and 10 percent.

"What we offer differently is that there is no need to have a local partnership and unlike Singapore, where you can’t buy landed property, there are no such restrictions here," said Kumar.

"Also, the level of management is very high and the documentation is clear. There’s no danger of losing property even if its kept locked up. And, foreigners are eligible to borrow up to 70 percent of the property’s value."

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