ABSD exemptions for 252 property transactions by foreigners

Two hundred and fifty two residential property transactions by foreigners have been exempted from additional buyer’s stamp duty (ABSD) since it was first introduced as a property cooling measure on 8 December 2011.

These foreign buyers are from the US, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland which are countries having free trade agreements with Singapore.

In a written response to a parliamentary question, Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam said 138 residential property transactions by foreign individuals were granted ABSD remission for the period 8 December 2011 to 11 January 2013.

Another 114 private property purchases received ABSD exemptions for the period 12 January 2013 to 31 July 2013.

The government had raised the ABSD for foreigners from 10 per cent to 15 per cent on 12 January 2013.

Mr Tharman said these transactions are about 1.5 per cent of all property transactions that attracted ABSD during the period.

The amount of ABSD which has been remitted for the 252 transactions over the period was $81.2 million.

Negotiations on other FTAs like the Trans-Pacific Partnership are still ongoing.

Mr Tharman said the government will continue to seek a balanced package in its FTA negotiations.

Source : Channel NewsAsia – 16 Sep 2013