Singapore REITs plan industry body to engage regulators, educate investors

The managers of Singapore’s largest real estate investment trusts (REITs) have set up an association to promote greater awareness among investors as well as to represent the REIT industry in their dealings with authorities.

Called the REIT Association Singapore (REITAS), the industry grouping is headed by Mr Chua Tiow Chye, the Group Chief Investment Officer and Regional Chief Executive Officer of North Asia and New Markets at Mapletree Investments.

Mapletree Investments, a unit of Temasek Holdings, manages several Singapore-listed REITs including Mapletree Commercial Trust and Mapletree Logistics Trust.

Other executive committee members include representatives from property giants such as CapitaLand, Keppel Land and Frasers Centrepoint as well as property fund management firm ARA, Citigroup and HSBC, the association’s website said.

According to the website, the key objectives of REITAS include promoting the Singapore REIT industry to greater market prominence in regional and global capital markets, as well as creating a better understanding of REITs listed on the Singapore Exchange (SGX).

REITAS – whose official launch date is scheduled for Nov 17 – also intends to represent the Singapore REIT industry “in engaging the various relevant authorities with the aim of improving the operating, legal, commercial and regulatory environment for S-REITs”.

News of REITAS’ creation comes just a month after the launch of the Small and Middle Capitalisation Companies Association (SMCCA), a grouping of small and mid-capitalisation companies listed on SGX.

SMCCA has already started to engage the SGX on behalf of members by submitting written responses on proposed regulatory changes such as the imposition of a minimum trading price as well as the enforcement frameworks that the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and SGX first proposed in February this year.

Source : Channel NewsAsia – 5 Nov 2014

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