Property market upswing likely soon

KUALA LUMPUR: Hunza Properties Bhd is optimistic about the long-term prospects of the property market and believes the market is on the verge of an upswing. 

Deputy general manager (corporate planning) Tay Phaik Huat said research showed a bull run in the share market was imminent in the next few years, which would be followed by a property boom. 

“That is why most of our projects are timed for launch and completion within the next few years,” he said at a briefing on the company's half-year financial results yesterday. 

Tay said Hunza had several projects with a combined gross development value (GDV) of RM2bil targeted for completion in 2008 and 2009. They include the 701-acre project in Bandar Putra Bertam (GDV of RM458mil) in Seberang Prai, the 238-acre project in Bandar Putra Bertam (RM517mil GDV), Gurney Drive condominium and shopping complex (RM459mil GDV), Tanjung Bungah management projects (RM242mil GDV), and the 393-acre project in Sungai Petani (RM300mil GDV). 

Tay said Hunza recorded a turnover of RM57.11mil and profit before tax of RM15.78mil for the half year ended December 2005. 

“The half-year profit is not too exciting but, if we look at the company's full-year trend, we will see a proportionately higher profit,” he said. 

Tay said Hunza's yearly return on equity was normally more than 10%, indicating the company was working hard for shareholders. 

“At about RM180mil (in shareholders' funds), we are way behind the top developers, but compare the return on equity and you will see how hard we work our money.” 

Hunza executive chairman Datuk Khor Teng Tong said the country's population growth rate of 2.6% meant that about 630,000 babies would be born every year, and that at an average number of people per household of 4.5, this translated into 140,000 new households every year. 

“We have to build at least 140,000 houses each year if we assume every family needs a house. This does not include commercial properties,” he added.  

 HUNZPTY :  [Stock Watch]  [NewsHUNZPTY-O :  [Stock Watch]

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