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  1. #1
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    16th Home and Condominium Fair at the Queen Sirikit National Convention Center

    PROPERTY / MARKETING & PROMOTION
    Bargains offered as companies clear stocks


    KANANA KATHARANGSIPORN

    Developers are trying to clear housing stocks by offering discounts and free furniture at the 16th Home and Condominium Fair at the Queen Sirikit National Convention Center until Sunday. Most of the condominiums on offer have already been launched and are suffering from slow sales.
    There has also been a significant drop in condominiums developed by new companies because financial institutions are stricter about releasing project finance, said Kittisak Jampathippong, deputy CEO of the property brokerage Harrison. Harrison is offering 15 condominiums at the fair with only two new ones launched.

    Bangkok Post

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    Property-sector slump blamed on policy uncertainty

    Property-sector slump blamed on policy uncertainty


    The value of the property market slumped by up to 20 per cent or Bt10 billion in the first four months of the year, due to political uncertainty and unclear economic policies under the interim government.


    According to the Thai Condominium Association's president Atip Bijanonda, there is purchasing power for both detached houses and condominiums, but most home-buyers have delayed their decisions to buy because they have no confidence in the government's policies.

    "They are adopting a wait-and-see attitude. They are not certain if the policies will drive the economy or not and they are also waiting to see if the government launches tax measures. As a result, transactions have dropped by 20 per cent or Bt10 billion," Atip said, adding that last year transactions totalled Bt50 billion in the same period.

    He said the drop would not only hurt developers but related sectors such as mortgages, construction materials, construction services, home electronics, advertising and others.

    "If the government has no policy to boost the property market, it should have policies to drive the economy as a whole. The property market - with combined value of Bt200 billion a year - is important as it also helps related businesses generate revenue of nearly Bt100 billion a year," Atip said.

    Due to sluggish sales, most property developers have revised down their sales targets this year by 10-30 per cent.

    Metrostar Property's managing director Ratanachai Phatinavin said the company had adjusted its presales estimate from Bt3 billion this year to Bt2 billion. This will reduce its revenue from Bt1.4 billion to Bt1 billion.

    The Finance Ministry is expected to temporarily cut property transfer fees as well as mortgage registration fees in an effort to boost the market.

    The Revenue Department's director-general Sanit Rangnoi estimated that around Bt5 billion to Bt6 billion in revenue would be shaved off if specific business tax, a form of value-added tax levied on property companies, was reduced from 3.3 per cent to 0.11 per cent.

    Another Bt600 million would disappear if the government allowed taxpayers to deduct from their taxable income the mortgage interest burden of up to Bt100,000 per annum, from Bt50,000 at present, he calculated.

    Yesterday, three property associations - the Thai Condominium Association, the Thai Real Estate Association and the Housing Business Association - opened the 16th House and Condo Show, which will run until Sunday.

    Around 600 property projects worth up to Bt12 billion are on show as developers seek to boost sales in the second quarter. Atip said the event organiser expected up to 100,000 visitors and sales worth up to Bt3 billion from the four-day event.

    Many firms are offering discounts worth between Bt200,000 and Bt600,000.


    Somluck Srimalee
    The Nation

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    Chalongphob rules out cut in transfer fees

    PROPERTY SECTOR
    Chalongphob rules out cut in transfer fees


    WICHIT CHANTANUSORNSIRI

    Finance Minister Chalongphob Sussangkarn yesterday dismissed suggestions that the government planned to cut land transfer and mortgage fees in a new stimulus programme for the property sector. ''Buyers who might have waited don't have to wait. Transfer and mortgage fees will not be changed,'' the minister said.

    The statement contradicts comments made over the past week by Fiscal Policy Office staff and ministry advisers suggesting that a cut in transfer fees would be contained in the new stimulus package.

    But Mr Chalongphob said authorities were reviewing proposals to increase personal income tax deductions for interest rate payments on mortgages, now set at a limit of 50,000 baht per year.

    Authorities were also considering cutting specific business taxes, he said, but this was still under debate as the benefit would go mostly to property developers.

    Mr Chalongphob also said that a new tax scheme for eco-cars would be approved by the cabinet this month.
    The programme will offer reduced excise taxes for small-engine cars meeting fuel efficiency and size criteria set by the Board of Investment and the Industry Ministry. Manufacturers also must commit to exporting at least 100,000 eco-cars per year to qualify for the tax breaks.

    Bangkok Post

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