Help Eco-Friendly Developers Move Forward Developing eco-friendly buildings in Malaysia is a costly affair, and that has kept many developers away from the in...

Help Eco-Friendly Developers Move Forward Developing eco-friendly buildings in Malaysia is a costly affair, and that has kept many developers away from the initiative.

REHDA’s immediate former president Datuk Seri Fateh Iskandar said that green developments in the country typically require long planning time and have higher initial costs of 15-20%.

These additional expenses include the procurement of eco-friendly construction materials, adoption of new technology and innovations, as well as design fees, professional fees, and payment for green rating assessments.

Fateh suggested, it is vital for the government to throw in more incentives to lure property developers into sustainable green projects.

“If we are serious about moving forward, incentives must be given.

Then more contractors will come up with more sustainable and green designs,” he said in his keynote speech during the Sustainable Housing Futures Conference at Limkokwing University, Cyberjaya in August.

Although maintaining an eco-friendly building is much cheaper in the long run, property buyers are still not encouraged by that as the upfront cost is still high.

Limited supplies of green construction materials and technology in Malaysia sees the need to import these resources from other nations.

Collectively, these factors are causing the high property prices, turning off buyers and thus impacting the demand for such eco-friendly developments.

Fateh urged the government to emulate Singapore, which has been providing incentives over the last five years.

“In Singapore, when multinational tenants want to rent a green building, they would have to pay a 20-30% rental premium.

Unfortunately, this does not happen in Malaysia.

Whether we build a standard building, MSC-status building, or green building, the rental is the same,” he explained.

There is also a lack of official regulations covering green construction technology.

“We need to tweak or re-legislate certain frameworks for green technology.

We have many building codes and regulations, but none for green technology,” Fateh pointed out.

By Neera Khandpuri.

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