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Malaysian developers look beyond home turf

Bangkok Post
Show DC, located on Jaturatit Road near Rama IX Road in Bangkok, is AEC’s first venture in Thailand. An integrated distribution centre for small businesses, it could be a prototype for more such buildings to serve Thailand’s huge retail sector.

Show DC, located on Jaturatit Road near Rama IX Road in Bangkok, is AEC’s first venture in Thailand. An integrated distribution centre for small businesses, it could be a prototype for more such buildings to serve Thailand’s huge retail sector.


The limited amount of land available in Penang, Malaysia is driving a local property developer and his colleagues to seek opportunities in other Asean countries, particularly Thailand, Myanmar and Laos.



Steven Ong, a director and shareholder of AEC Property Development, said land in Penang was fully developed and he had decided to seek more opportunities elsewhere. He views Thailand as a good centre from which to expand, especially to Myanmar, which is embarking on a new era of economic development.

Six individual developers from Malaysia and one from Thailand, Thanongsak Hutanuwat, who has connections with local investors in Myanmar, have formed AEC to invest in the property business in Thailand, Myanmar and Laos.

“We expect to have the first project in Myanmar within the next six to 12 months. It might be a small-scale project with investment size of not over US$100 million,” said Mr Ong.

He said the reasons for entering the property markets in Thailand and Myanmar were different, given their vastly different levels of economic development. In Thailand, he and his Malaysian partners first explored an opportunity five years ago, but the political climate at that time did not support their investment. This year, amid brighter prospects, they have returned.


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