KUALA LUMPUR – In the latest development, Lembaga Tabung Haji (Pilgrim Fund Board of Malaysia) has confirmed purchasing a piece of land for the purpose of the development at the Tun Razak Exchange (TRX) financial district from 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) at a cost of RM188.5 million, which represents a significant discount of the current market value as appraised by an independent professional valuer.
According to TH Deputy Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Datuk Johan Abdullah, he asserts that the investment was in line with THâ€™s property investment strategy which is to focus on the domestic sector.
“The investment is a commercial decision which fits our risk appetite and has gone through all internal detailed due processes.
“The purchase of the property at RM188.5 million was at a discounted price based on the current market value and appraised by an independent professional valuer,” he said in a media statement today.
Earlier today, Malaysian Digest had reported that speculation was rife on several blogs including The Benchmark, which has posted several documents, alleging to show that Tabung Haji has purchased a plot of land in Tun Razak Exchange (TRX) for RM2,860 per sq. ft., totallling RM194 million to develop a 40-storey service apartment.
A second purchase referred to in the allegations involved another plot costing RM3,900 per sq. ft. totalling RM578 million for the development of a 74-storey building named ‘Signature Tower’.
However, Johan in his media statement has denied the second purchase of Signature Towers (Phase 2) as alleged in the speculative rumours earlier.
The allegations put forward in the speculations in relation to the land purchase had highlighted the purchase price at an inflated rate compared to the original price paid by 1MDB.
However, a check of the market rate of land prices in the prime TRX area is in line with the rate paid by TH for its purchase.
Referring to a report in The Star dated 7 April, Malaysian Resources Corporation Bhd (MRCB) had purchased a plot of land from the German Embassy in nearby Jalan Kia Peng (adjoining TRX) at a much higher rate of RM3,188 per sq. ft. totalling RM259.16 million.
In comparison, the purchase price paid by TH for prime real estate in TRX is significantly lower than the amount paid by MRCB.
According to market sources, Indonesian commercial developer Mulia Group is in talks with 1MDB to takeover the development of Signature Towers. – www.malaysiandigest.com