Highlights:

  1. PMO: Foreigners may buy homes in Malaysia, but staying doesn’t come free
  2. Agong gives consent for SST implementation from September 1
  3. ASNB declares RM1.18b income distribution for ASW 2020
  4. Nestlé deal with Starbucks to market Starbucks products globally
  5. China’s swine fever outbreak may spread in Asia, UN agency warns

PMO: Foreigners may buy homes in Malaysia, but staying doesn’t come free
The Prime Minister’s Office has clarified that foreigners are free to buy homes in Malaysia but are subject to certain conditions. It said such purchases would not automatically grant buyers residency but foreigners can apply through the Malaysia My Second Home government programme. The clarification comes following Prime Minister, Tun Dr Mahathir’s remarks over the Forest City project in Johor yesterday.

Agong gives consent for SST implementation from September 1
The Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Sultan Muhammad V, has given his consent to implement the Sales and Services Tax (SST), paving the way for the tax to come into effect on September 1. The King’s approval came after the Dewan Rakyat and the Dewan Negara gave their green-light. This meant SST would be enforced from Saturday, replacing the abolished Goods and Services Tax (GST), Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said in a statement today. “With the implementation of the SST the Government hopes it can alleviate the people’s burden, as the Government will only collect RM21 billion in SST this year compared with RM44 billion in GST,” he said. He added that the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry would monitor and take action on any profiteering activity, he added.

ASNB declares RM1.18b income distribution for ASW 2020
Amanah Saham Nasional has declared an income distribution of six sen per unit for its fixed price fund Amanah Saham Wawasan 2020 for the financial year ending August 31, 2018. ASW 2020 will distribute RM1.18bil in income distribution to more than 870,000 unit holders who own 19.6 billion units.  As at end-July 2018, ASW 2020 recorded net income of RM1.179bil for the first 11 months of its financial year. ASNB is a wholly-owned unit trust company of Permodalan Nasional Bhd. PNB Group chairman, Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz said: “Despite a challenging market environment throughout the fund’s financial year, PNB through ASNB’s unit trust operations has been able to deliver sound and competitive returns to unit holders of ASW 2020.

Nestlé deal with Starbucks to market Starbucks products globally
Nestlé and Starbucks Corporation have closed the deal granting Nestlé the perpetual rights to market Starbucks Consumer Packaged Goods and Foodservice products globally, outside of the company’s coffee shops. Both companies will work closely together on the existing Starbucks range of roast and ground coffee, whole beans as well as instant and portioned coffee besides capitalising on their experience and capabilities to work on innovation with the goal of enhancing Starbucks’ product offerings for coffee lovers globally. President and chief executive officer (CEO) of Starbucks, Kevin Johnson in a statement said the global coffee alliance with Nestlé is a significant strategic milestone for the growth of Starbucks and helps the company to amplify the brand around the world while delivering long-term value creation for Starbucks’ shareholders.

China’s swine fever outbreak may spread in Asia, UN agency warns
The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation has warned that China’s deadly pig virus outbreak could spread to other Asian countries at any time. The agency raised concerns on Tuesday as China, the world’s largest pork producer, scrambled to contain an outbreak of African swine fever. More than 24,000 pigs have been culled in four provinces since the first reported incidence in the northeast province of Liaoning in early August. Last week, the eastern city of Lianyungang culled 14,500 pigs in an attempt to check the disease’s spread. In a statement the FAO said the cases had been detected in areas more than 1,000km apart, meaning the disease could cross national borders. The “diverse geographical spread of the outbreaks in China have raised fears that the disease will move across borders to neighbouring countries of Southeast Asia or the Korean Peninsula where trade and consumption of pork products are also high”, the FAO said.