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Foreign investors seeking investment opportunities in Vietnam’s real estate sector

Despite the wave of fleeing of domestic enterprises, foreign investors find opportunities in this crisis by quietly seeking beautiful land areas to develop their projects.

Being real estate developers in Malaysia and owning two apartment projects in Binh Duong (Vietnam), Saw Kim Suan, President of Setia Lai Thieu Ltd said: “This is the best time to choose and negotiate projects”. He also said that in 2012, Setia Lai Thieu began to seek beautiful land area to prepare for new plans. The interested places of Malaysian investor were the areas which have the potential to develop and well connected infrastructure with Hochiminh city centre.

Saw Kim Suan said “Vietnam’s real estate is cheaper and competitive market. There is much potential, so we are still patient and are waiting for opportunities”.

Meanwhile, a representative of a real estate project broker in district 3 confirmed that he has been advising some Japanese investors to buy prime located land areas in the centre of district 1, Hochiminh city for building development. He also shared these investors are unaware of the price reducing situation and full of offices for lease and commercial centre suppliers.

“Their unique requirement is that land areas have to locate in Saigon Centre and are clear. They did not plan to buy cheaply and expensively sell, they plan to explore for a long time. Thus, they choose very carefully”

In a talk with about new project developing plan, general director of Hung Viet Co and KRDF03 (Joint Venture Co between Vietnam and a Korea), Sang Hun Oh said: “Together with two ongoing constructing projects in HCM City for Korean community and Vietnamese people with stable income, the holding company is considering to seek more investment opportunities in real estate sector in the next few years”.

Sang Hun Oh shared, most of people are aware of the real estate market becoming worse and reaching the bottom. In contrast, this is the best time for professional investors make decisions due to “soft” prices. “After crisis, following economic laws, all kinds of assets, including real estate will recover their value. That is the time for receiving results of these investments” said Sang Hun Oh.

Being an advisor for many foreign enterprises, chair of Song Phat Ltd, Tran Tan Thien said that the number of foreign investors seeking projects in the past 6 months has increased. Compared with 2-3 years ago, Asian investors, especially Japanese was dominating. He said: “If only counting in Song Phat system, the number of foreign investors reaching projects in consumer goods, foods and real estate for high-rise building, workshops has increased by 50 percent on year”

According to Thien, because Vietnam’s economy in general and real estate market in particular are still young in comparison with other economies such as: Malaysia, South Korea, and Japan…, foreign investors still find out opportunities in crisis. Their characteristics are having long-lasting plans, stable financial potential for medium and long term

He explained that Asian investors joining Vietnam’s market gradually increased due to many reasons such as near geographical location, cultural similarities, good friendship and small gaps in economic development. In addition, European crisis is spreading leads all investors move to a new market in South East Asia like Vietnam.

He said “foreign investors are considering many plans to choose the dropping point of Vietnam’s economy and they accept invisible challenges to participate in amidst this crisis in order to seek chances.”

According to Colliers International’s report on Vietnam’s real estate market in Q2/2012, although in the past six months, real estate market has had no changes, from Q2/2012, loosened fiscal policies have opened many positive signs such as saving and lending interest rates have fallen and consumer and property loans have been loosened under control.

Colliers analysed, total Vietnam’s FDI in the past 6 months reached $6.38 billion, equally 72.3 percent year-on-year. Of which, $1.5 billion dong of FDI was poured into real estate including additional registered capital and total investment of four newly allowed projects. Colliers explained these things showed that although they knew they had to face with many risks in Vietnam real estate market, they still find out and believe in the long term ability of it.

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