KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 15 — The government lowered the price threshold for foreign house buyers in an urgent move to prevent the current property overhang from ballooning into a crisis, Tun Dr Mahathir explained today.
“This is not for foreigners who can afford to buy,” he said, referring to the recent announcement that foreigners can now buy high-rise houses in Malaysia at the lowered price of RM600,000 instead of the previous minimum set at RM1 million.
The government’s move to lower the threshold was announced during the tabling of Budget 2020 in Parliament last Friday and drew mixed responses
Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng who tabled the budget has said the measure was necessary to cut the oversupply of condominiums and apartments amounting to RM8.3 billion in the second quarter of 2019
Lim said the move was to encourage the sales of properties from developers and would not affect the secondary housing market
But critics have claimed that housing developers might take advantage of the situation by engaging in high-rise property speculation in order to jack up prices