Developers in KK want utility charges to be fixed

KOTA KINABALU: Property developers here want a change in the way they pay utility firms such as Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd for infrastructure such as power cables and poles used for their project areas.

The developers want a fixed rate for the capital contribution charges (CCC) which they said were currently too costly.

Sabah Housing and Real Estate Developers Association (SHAREDA) president Datuk Francis Goh said the CCC for affordable housing apartments should be about RM1,000 per unit.

The CCC for medium priced apartment projects costing between RM250,000 and RM500,000 should be in the range of about RM2,000 per unit, he said after the association’s annual general meeting on Saturday.

Currently, CCC were calculated based on various factors including the cost of material, labour, transportation, and any work that has to be contracted out by SESB.

Goh said SHAREDA’s 180 members had paid some RM180mil in capital contribution charges to SESB. He however did not tell what period was involved.

Describing the current charges as prohibitive, he said the current method of calculating the CCC made the charges unpredictable for developers.

Goh said this was among the factors contributing to the exorbitant property prices in Sabah.

He noted that under the present calculation method, the CCC for an office and shopping centre development in the city totalled some RM20mil.

“This is about 20% of the overall gross development cost and ultimately it will have to be transferred to our buyers,” he added.

He said SHAREDA would raise the matter with the Energy Commission.

Goh also noted that the CCC charges in the peninsula were lower than those in Sabah, adding that the association does not know how such a situation could prevail.

State Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Hajiji Noor had raised similar concerns about the costly CCC charges in Sabah in asking SESB, Telekom Malaysia and the state water department to lower those charges.

He noted that SESB’s capital contribution rates was about five times higher than those imposed by its parent company Tenaga Nasional.

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