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Opportunities in the New Malaysia



U.S. REITs were established by Congress in 1960 to provide investors, especially retail investors, access to income-producing real estate. Since then, the U.S. REIT approach has flourished and served as the model for more than 35 countries around the world. REITs, for the first time, brought the benefits of commercial real estate investment to all investors – benefits those that previously had been available only through large financial intermediaries and to wealthy individuals.

The REIT approach to real estate investment has been refined and enhanced over the ensuing years. REITs in the U.S. and increasingly around the world now regularly provide investors with the opportunity for meaningful dividends, portfolio diversification, valuable liquidity, enviable transparency and competitive performance.

Investors have responded to this investment opportunity. Nearly six decades after their creation, the U.S. REIT industry has grown to a $1 trillion equity market capitalization representing nearly $3 trillion in gross real estate assets, with more than $2 trillion of that total from public listed and non-listed REITs and the remainder from privately held REITs. That growth led, in part, to the creation of the new Real Estate headline sector in the Global Industry Classification Standard in 2016 In Asia, REITs took off in the early 2000s with the launch of 2 REITs in Japan in September 2001 followed by Singapore in July 2002. Malaysia followed suit thereafter when the first M- REIT was launched in August 2005 pursuant to introduction of the Guidelines in REITs by the Securities Commission of Malaysia (SC).

Over the last 13 years, M-REITs have become a significant component of the listed capital with a CAGR of 40% since its inception to March 2019, from less than RM 500 million to RM44 billion markets . Malaysia’s REIT industry has, since, provided investment diversification, and its stakeholders income stability, inflation protection, delivering long-term performance and lower risk and volatility. M-REITs saw a landmark development with the launch of the Bursa Malaysia REIT Index in October 2017, increasing the visibility of M-REITs in the capital market.

M-REITs: Monetizing assets and raising capital for the property sector

As Malaysia stays on track to move the nation towards becoming a high-income economy, the growth of Malaysia’s middle-class will continue to fuel demand for all real estate classes. Capitalizing on global mega trends, such as e-commerce, industry 4.0, digitalization, healthcare, education amongst others, REITs are poised to benefit from these trends.

In this scenario, REITs will continue to serve as a tool to power growth and satiate the demand for new real estate in Malaysia. As a socio-economic development engine, REITs will be one of the key drivers to sustain prosperity and progress for the country by:

  • attracting new flows of foreign direct investments into Malaysia.
  • monetizing and raising capital for real estate and infrastructure development.
  • generating stable returns for sovereign wealth funds, pension funds and insurance companies, institutional funds and retail investors
  • enabling Malaysians to own a share of quality real estate, thus empowering wealth creation.
  • increasing job creation, elevating living standards, and upgrading expertise in the real estate industry.
  • supporting the fostering of innovation in emerging real estate sub-sectors capitalizing on global mega trends

The inaugural MALAYSIA REIT FORUM 2019 – OPPORTUNITIES IN THE NEW MALAYSIA aligns with the Malaysian Government’s agenda to raise new capital through monetizing assets to strengthen the Government’s balance sheet in order to improve the prosperity of the nation and establishing a sustainable future. The Government’s recent proposed stake divestment of its airport assets into a REIT structure is the first in the world and heralds a new direction for growing and enhancing the visibility of M-REITs globally.

The forum will focus on the benefits and strategies of realizing the value of public sector/ government assets through a REIT, explore the latest developments in the Malaysia REIT market, and uncover the potential of REITs as efficient vehicles for nation building, while at the same time delivering wealth creation for Malaysians and get inspired by innovative ideas to propel future growth of the industry, having an overview of the Asia REIT landscape and finding out what’s in store for 2019 and beyond from a distinguished panel of speakers.

The Venue

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