Malaysian developer UEM Sunrise recently made an announcement to the media that it has stopped all plans to build the Asian Trade Center development in Iskandar Malaysia. This has sparked jittery reactions from investors, who note that UEM Sunrise’s stoppage is the first major project in the region to fall through.

UEM Sunrise did not give a reason for the decision.

Property experts were stunned by the news, and spoke to the media about their worries for investments to Iskandar. The move was also unexpected because UEM Sunrise managing director and chief executive Anwar Syahrin Abdul Ajib had told the New Straits Times in December that building plans were going ahead and they were “in the midst of getting approvals from the relevant authorities”.

The stoppage also means the China Mall, which was slated to be a mall even larger than the Pavillion in Kuala Lumpur, will not be built, a move that spells trouble for investors. It was first thought that the China Mall would be a catalyst to attract foreign investors to the region.

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