29 April 2013

Iskandar Malaysia (Johor Bahru) - Singapore Relationship

I have been living in Johor Bahru, Malaysia for more than 20 years before I moved to Singapore. If you asked me the feeling I have towards those cities, I would tell you that I love to stay in Johor Bahru for its relax life style and work in Singapore for its fast moving tempo on business development environment.

I have been at Batam for several vacation with my family, and some merchandisers allows us to use Singapore dollars to buy the food/services there. It gives me to an idea of how we can create a bigger pie in these region - Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia in Asean region.

If you look at the map, Singapore stays at a very strategic location in between Asean countries. It is now one of the world's top financial hubs, oil refinery hubs, offshore and marine centers, as well as logistic centers. It takes many years to build up its repo as the world class transportation hub too.

With limited Singapore land supply and high density of population now in Singapore, Singapore has no choice but to transform itself to a lower labor-incentive nation, mainly focus on finance & service industry such as tourism, retailers, and so on. With this policy in place, I believe there will be more SMEs in Singapore move to Iskandar area to produce the goods & services there and sell it / export it through Singapore ports as Singapore ports will still remains at one of the world's busiest logistic centers.

Nonetheless, the property price in Iskandar will only be increasing in longer term after more highly paid workers staying in this region, which I hope the improvement of infrastructure & security will help this trend to continue in long run.

News on Iskandar:

ANOTHER RM5.06 billion worth of investments has been committed to Iskandar Malaysia in the first quarter of this year, bringing the total since 2006 to RM111.37 billion as at March 31.

Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA) chief executive Datuk Ismail Ibrahim said in a statement yesterday of the total cumulative committed investments, RM44.82 billion or 40.2% represents investments that have been realised.

“Iskandar Malaysia continues to receive strong support and patronage from both local and foreign investors in spurring its growth. This indicates the high level of confidence that stakeholders have in the various initiatives being

Among the promoted sectors, manufacturing recorded the highest cumulative committed investment at RM35.33 billion, he added.

Property development — residential, retail and industrial segments collectively — contribute cumulative investments of RM40.42 billion as at March 31, followed by utilities (RM9.53 billion), government investment — mainly in infrastructure and public works (RM8.31 billion) -- and emerging technologies (RM1.03 billion).

Local investors contributed RM72.6 billion (64%) of the cumulative committed investments while the balance RM38.8 billion (36%) came from foreign investors.

Asia remains the key source of foreign investments, with Singapore and Japan being the top two Asian investors.

Source: http://www.mmail.com.my/story/iskandar-gets-another-rm5b-investments-54449


  1. At the moment where only 5-6000 string Singapore household living in Johor, it may sound plausible to commute daily, when more than 100,000 cars are jammed packed at the causeway everyday, losing valuable sleep time and family time, one might wonder, if it is worth it?

    Iskandar must provide the kind of high paying jobs for the community to survive on its own. Would businesses move to Iskandar? We shall see...

    1. Some of my Malaysian friends who cannot afford to buy a HDB flats or private condos in Singapore are considering to move back to JB once the MRT is linked to JB, which I think is a catalyst to further improve (or I would say "goreng") the property price near to the Train Station. For those foreigners which form about 40% in Singapore population, I believe JB is another choice for them. With "Greater Woodlands" project in plan, I believe there will be increasing demand in JB property market in future.


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