More effective law on urban renewal planned — Khalid Samad

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KUALA LUMPUR (April 8): The Government is planning to table a new law on urban renewal to increase the effectiveness of redevelopment projects in the country.

Federal Territories Minister Abdul Khalid Abdul Samad (PH-Shah Alam) told the Dewan Rakyat today that Malaysia does not have a specific law for urban redevelopment.

Khalid said at present, the process was carried out only using guidelines under the Town and Country Planning Act 1976.

He said the guide involved four categories, namely urban redevelopment, urban rehabilitation, urban preservation and urban revitalisation.

"Therefore, to ensure that urban redevelopment is more effective, a new legislation is needed," he said during Minister's Question Time. However, he did not provide any timeline as to when will the new law be tabled in Parliament.

Abdul Khalid was responding to question posed by Fong Kui Lun (PH-Bukit Bintang), who asked the Ministry of Federal Territories to state whether the Ministry intends to introduce a new urban renewal law to facilitate the redevelopment of old buildings by private companies similar to that implemented in places such as Hong Kong and Singapore.

Abdul Khalid also said any redevelopment in Malaysia requires 100% agreement from existing owners.

"In other countries, properties that are less than 10 years old only require 90% agreement, and those above 10 years only require 80% agreement, so the new law will address all these issues," he said.

To another question, Khalid said housing projects based on a cross-subsidy model will be continued by the Pakatan Harapan Government. However, it would be implemented in a more transparent manner.

"We find that although the concept is good, but in many existing projects, the deals are found to be more advantageous to developers. We will be more transparent and open," he said, Bernama reported.

He was responding to a supplementary question from Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor (BN-Putrajaya) on whether the Government will continue to implement a cross-subsidy model to provide free housing to existing residents of an area without using Government funds, such as the projects in Kampung Kerinchi and Bandar Tun Razak.