May 6, 2020 / 10:26 AM / 23 days ago

Singapore eases some rules to help property developers in pandemic

A view of an empty street during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in Singapore April 27, 2020. REUTERS/Edgar Su/Files

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Singapore said on Wednesday it is providing temporary relief for property developers hit by disruptions to construction and home sales due to the COVID-19 pandemic amid disrupted supply chains and manpower shortages.

The measures include allowing developers to extend the completion time for projects and a relaxation of a rule that penalises some firms for not building and selling homes in a timely fashion.

“The government will continue to ensure that prices for private residential properties remain broadly consistent with economic fundamentals,” authorities said.

Singapore has implemented a two-month social distancing “circuit breaker” aimed at stemming the spread of the coronavirus that is due to last until June 1.

“The circuit breaker measures put in place from 7 April 2020 also saw the suspension of work at construction sites, operations at housing developers’ sales galleries, and home viewings,” the government said.

Private home prices in Singapore fell 1% in the first quarter ahead of the stricter lockdown measures.

Reporting by Aradhana Aravindan in Singapore; editing by Nick Macfie

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