Special committee to review terms of Forest City project


PUTRAJAYA: The Housing and Local Government Ministry will form a committee to review all the terms of the Forest City development project in Johor.

Minister Datuk Zuraidah Kamaruddin said the committee would comprise representatives from the ministry, Finance Ministry and state government, as well as others should the need arise.

The committee is tasked to go through the terms in the agreement and project approval, she said after attending the National Physical Planning Council meeting.

“We will fine-tune the statement issued by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad on banning foreigners from buying residential units in the Forest City project. We will meet the developer to get the actual picture of things.”

The committee, she said, would submit a report to the prime minister, adding that she expected the developer to refer to her ministry for clarification on the directive.

Zuraida said she had been informed that the residential units were being offered for sale in China and not in Malaysia.

Housing and Local Government minister Datuk Zuraida Kamaruddin (right) addresses the media during a press conference in Putrajaya. With her is her deputy Datuk Raja Kamarul Bahrin Shah Raja Ahmad. Pic by MOHD FADLI HAMZAH

On Monday, Dr Mahathir was reported as saying that foreigners would not be allowed to buy residential units in the US$100 billion (RM410 billion) Forest City project.

He said the project was built for foreigners. Most Malaysians, Dr Mahathir added, could not afford to buy the apartments.

The developer, Country Garden Pacificview Sdn Bhd (CGPV), was reported as saying that it had complied with all laws and regulations pertaining to approvals needed to sell units to foreign buyers.

CGPV said the prime minister’s statement did not gel with the outcome of a meeting between Dr Mahathir and Country Garden Holdings founder and chairman Yeung Kwok Keung.

The two had a 40-minute closed-door meeting on Aug 16, prior to the prime minister’s visit to China.

The developer said it was seeking clarifications from the Prime Minister’s Office, as it believed that Dr Mahathir’s comments could have been taken out of context. © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd