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Labour Shortage Impacting Smaller Developers in Thailand Featured

According to a survey by the Agency for Real Estate Affairs (AREA), many small and medium-sized property firms have had to suspend their condominium and other housing projects due to a labour shortage and bank restrictions on the provision of project financing.

Some developers, meanwhile, have had to delay the transfer of units to customers after being unable to complete projects on time due to a shortage of labour in the construction industry.

AREA's research shows that 89 residential projects - for both condominiums and detached housing, and comprising18,404 units worth Bt45.81 billion - have been suspended after developers were faced with commercial banks restricting the provision of project loans, plus problems caused by the labour shortage.

Some 44% of the affected projects in terms of value are for detached housing, 34% for condominiums and the remainder for townhouses.

Developers of 34% of the 89 projects had to suspend their plans after tighter bank restrictions meant they were denied access to project financing, according to AREA.

Early this week, Pirom Land suspended work on the Echo Condo and returned down payments to customers after a shortage of labour resulted in the company being unable to deliver units on time.

The company had already sold 70% of the Echo Condo project value of about Bt700 million.

Business Housing Association adviser Issara Boonyoung said a shortage of labour was currently the biggest problem facing smaller property developers, as the top 10 listed developers were expanding their investment to launch projects both in Bangkok and the provinces by signing long-term deals with contractors - a strategy that is squeezing the labour pool for small and medium-sized property firms.

"Most contractors are willing to join with market-leading firms, as they have more projects to support them in the long term than do the small and medium-sized developers," he said.

Meanwhile, it is the small and medium-sized players that are also facing bank restrictions on lending for residential projects, with key loan conditions changing, such as the sales recorded now having to be at least half of a project's value before a loan can be provided by some institutions.

This has forced some of these developers to suspend their projects, Issara said.

Financial results suffer

Some listed property firms have also had to delay the delivery of homes to customers due to the labour shortage, which will affect their financial results for the second half of the year.

For example, Property Perfect has had to revise down its revenue target from Bt15 billion to Bt14 billion as a result of its construction process falling behind schedule due to a shortage of construction workers.

Prinsiri, meanwhile, has lowered its revenue target from Bt3 billion to Bt2.9 billion for the same reason.

Last modified onSunday, 22 September 2013 20:00
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