Property veteran Han gets China itch

At the age of 70 when most people are retired, former Labour Permanent Secretary Han Cheng Fong has decided to strike out on his own with a focus on China, where he has done deals for former employers like DBS Land and Fraser & Neave.

His first project, in a joint venture with a Hong-Kong based Chinese lady whom he declined to name, is an office, shopping and hotel complex in Chengdu, which he values at around S$500 million when completed in 2013.

Dr Han, who went to Far East Group and Sino-Land after he left F&N, said: “After I finished my contract with the Far East Group and Sino-Land, I thought I could take it easy. But soon my feet got itchy and through my contacts in China, I got in touch with Zhong Tie (China Rail), a state-owned company which is on the Fortune 500 list and which won the bid for four adjoining parcels of land on one of which our project stands.”

The complex, developed by the joint venture company Brilliance International Investment, sits on 52,830 sq m (569,000 sq ft) and will have a built up area of about 288,800 sq m (3.1 million sq ft).

A 32,000 sq m plot has been carved out for a shopping mall and sold in October to Singapore-based Perennial Real Estate, which is headed by Mr Pua Seck Guan, formerly of Capitaland. The four-storey mall will have a built in area of 84,000 sq m.

Most of the four office towers will be sold on a strata-title basis for around 9,000 to 10,000 yuan (S$1,856 to S$2,063) per sq m for office space and for an average 20,000 yuan for shop space. Dr Han, who hopes to retain the five-star hotel with about 300 keys, values the office and hotel part of the complex at between 1.35 billion and 1.5 billion yuan.

Source : Today – 8 Oct 2011

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