KOTA KINABALU: Sabah expects an economic spur in the housing sector with the implementation of its Malaysia My Second Home scheme, Deputy Chief Minister II Datuk Seri Dr Joachim Gunsalam.
The state expects bigger returns the Sabah-Malaysia My Second Home (SBH-MM2H) initiative participants, Dr Gunsalam, who is also state Local Government and Housing Minister, said when officiating the roof-topping ceremony of the Coral Bay @ Sutera organised by GSH Corporation Limited and China Railway Construction Group (CRCG) (M) Sdn Bhd here on Thursday (June 1). "The state will benefit economically through property purchases, the inflow of funds and the stimulation of the local economy," he said.
The SBH-MM2H was adapted from the "Malaysia My Second Home" programme implemented by the Federal Government under the tourism sector.
It is also the main economic sector emphasised in the five-year Hala Tuju Sabah Maju Jaya (SMJ) Development Plan 1.0 (2021-2025).
"Given its stunning and picturesque scenery, Sabah has a great deal of potential for drawing tourists who would like to make it their second home.
"Furthermore, Sabah's unique mix of ethnic groups and cultures is one of the state's main attractions for tourists," he said, adding the SBH-MM2H programme provides incentives and rewards for foreign tourists taking up the offer.
Under the scheme, participants would be required to stay a minimum of 30 days per year with an individual or family being only allowed to stay for 5+5 years in Sabah.
Other requirements include buying property worth RM600,000 or more, obtaining a medical check-up certificate from the applicant's country of origin and opening a bank account in any Sabah-based local bank with a RM200,000 fixed deposit.
Dr Gunsalam said Sabah's residential real estate market has been recovering since 2021 with 4,805 transactions involving RM1.941bil in 2021.
"The housing industry is an important contributor to the Malaysian economy by providing new job opportunities and also contributing to total output (GDP).
Higher economic growth and income correlate directly to property prices," he said.