T. Ananda Krishnan, the second richest man in Malaysia, is one of the 10 foreign investors who are purchasing large swathes of property in London, and pushing up property prices well-beyond the reach of local Britons, according to media reports.
Usaha Tegas Group, the main business holding of the Malaysian billionaire, reportedly has submitted plans to develop 104 luxury homes on a piece of land which formerly housed the St John’s Wood barracks.
The proposed luxury apartments are expected to go for up to £5 million while the detached mansions, featuring seven bedrooms on the same site, will likely sell for a higher price.
The report noted that sites for around 30,000 homes in London are owned by just 10 investors from Hong Kong, Malaysia, Australia, China, Sweden and Singapore, raising concerns from housing experts and British politicians that Londoners would not be able to afford buying their own homes.
Citing data from Molior London, a research house on residential property, the report revealed that plans for over 21,000 homes in central London are being developed by investors from Hong Kong, Singapore, mainland China and Malaysia.
Many of the new developments in London are treated as “safe deposit boxes” by international investors, instead of being owned by Britons, who are in dire need of housing, said the report.
With this, mayor Boris Johnson “challenged” foreign developers to commit to making new houses available to locals to buy before or alongside foreign buyers, said London’s deputy mayor for housing, land and property, Richard Blakeway.