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Singapore land gets record $1 billion bid from Chinese buyers


Pooja Thakur Mahrotri, Bloomberg

A residential plot in Singapore may fetch a record price for a government land sale, with a Chinese consortium putting in the highest bid at S$1 billion ($718 million).

Logan Property (Singapore) Co. and Nanshan Group Singapore Co. put in the highest bid in the Stirling Road land auction that closed Thursday, according to a statement from the Urban Redevelopment Authority. The final award of the site will be decided once the bids have been evaluated.

The price for the land would be equivalent to S$1,050 per square foot of gross floor area, translating into the highest absolute price paid for a residential plot, according to Cushman & Wakefield Inc. The Urban Redevelopment Authority announced on April 10 that it had received an application from a developer for the site to be put up for public tender. The plot can house about 1,110 units, according to URA estimates.

“It is the first time for a pure residential site to cross the S$1 billion mark,” said Christine Li, director of research for Singapore at Cushman & Wakefield. “The participation from 13 local and foreign developers shows the sheer amount of liquidity in the market as S$11 billion is going after a plum site in Singapore’s fringe location.”

Developers’ hunger for Singapore land is adding to signs that the city’s housing market is making a comeback after three years of price declines. As new home sales surge after an easing of property restrictions in mid-March, developers are becoming more aggressive in bidding at land auctions. On average, they’ve paid a 29 percent premium, the highest level in at least five years, according to Cushman & Wakefield, which makes comparisons with the past prices of similar properties.

The richest bid came from a joint venture between Logan Property Holdings Co., a Hong Kong-listed developer which has developments in Shenzhen and the Pearl River Delta region and China’s Nanshan Group. Nanshan has been active in Singapore’s government land auctions. It participated in eight out of 11 tenders launched in the past 12 months, according to Cushman & Wakefield.

Other participants included MCL Land (Everbright) Pte. which was the second-highest bidder at S$925.7 million.

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