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Swire Properties Had a Busy Year

Swire Properties, the real estate arm of Swire Pacific Group, reported underlying profit in 2016 rose to HKD7.11billion(USD920million) from HKD7.08billion in 2015. Gross rental income was HKD10.77billion in 2016 compared to HKD10.72billion in 2015. The developer said the 2015 profit included a loss of HKD229 million on disposal of four hotels in the U.K.

Swire had a busy year in 2016 - it opened the first of two office towers in the Brickell City Centre development in Miami, in March; in July 2016, it announced the HKD15billion redevelopment of Taikoo Place in HK; in October 2016, it conditionally agreed to sell its 100% interest in the company which owns an uncompleted investment property development in Kowloon Bay, Hong Kong for a cash consideration of HKD6.528 billion, subject to adjustments.

Swire said in 2016 gross rental income fell in Hong Kong while increased in mainland China and the U.S.A. The reduction in Hong Kong largely reflected lower retail rental income consequent on lower retail sales. Profit from property trading in 2016 included that recognised on the sales of residential units in the U.S.A. Fewer residential properties were sold in Hong Kong. No sales of office property took place in Mainland China, , the company said upon announcing the 2016 annual result, adding the performance of the hotels in Mainland China improved during 2016, while at the same time hotels in Hong Kong were adversely affected by a reduction in the number of visitors to Hong Kong. On an attributable basis, net investment property valuation gains in 2016, after deferred tax relating to investment properties in Mainland China and the U.S.A., were HKD8.03billion, compared to net gains of HKD7.06billion in 2015.

Gearing increased from 15.3% at 31st December 2015 to 15.6% at 31st December 2016. The company attributed increase in net debt due to expenditure on investment and trading properties in Hong Kong and on the Brickell City Centre development in Miami in the U.S.A., but added they were partially offset by sales proceeds from trading properties in Hong Kong and Miami.

- APMR News

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