Property Drive

May 19, 2010 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Overseas Realty Ceylon, a unit of Singapore’s Shing Kwan group, is pushing ahead with Colombo’s largest property project amid renewed buying interest in apartments after the end of a 30-year war. Overseas Realty owns Colombo’s World Trade Centre building which houses the Colombo Stock Exchange and is jointly developing Havelock City, an 18-acre block of land with state-run Bank of Ceylon.

Movement

“I would not say property prices are moving up as such, but certainly from the perspective of our company we are seeing significant increase in interest in rentals at the World Trade Centre,” says Thilan Wijesinghe, managing director of the group.

“We have also seen a significant increase in apartment sales in comparison with the same period last year.”

Havelock City has started work on a third apartment block, with sales of around 70 percent out of 226 apartments in the first two towers the firm is building being completed. The first two towers had cost about 25 million US dollars.

Sri Lanka’s property market is recovering from a downturn triggered by a balance of payments crisis, high interest rates and an intensifying war at home amid a global downturn which reduced