CapitaLand ready to resume operations after COVID-19 eases

October 05, 2021 | 16:39
The government is lifting the ban on construction activities from October 1 after many months of halting to fight COVID-19. VIR's Bich Ngoctalked with Ronald Tay, CEO of CapitaLand Development (Vietnam) about how the company works to resume operations and prepare for a new launch in the last months of the year.

What is CapitaLand doing to resume operations after the government allows businesses to reopen?

CapitaLand ready to resume operations after COVID-19 eases
Ronald Tay, chief executive officer, CapitaLand Development (Vietnam)

As the localities are taking prudent steps to ease restrictions, we recognise that it will not be "business as usual" for real estate after the unprecedented crisis. While a source of global economic disruption, COVID-19 presents an opportunity to make new growth initiatives, including stepping up our digitalisation efforts through identifying new sales channels to create a differentiated customer experience.

Our focus now is to work on project execution to meet market demand and put us ahead in the path towards normality. We are also upskilling our employees to ensure they remain relevant and competitive in the post-COVID-19 environment. On top of that, we will continue to put in place best-practice precautionary measures to ensure the well-being of our stakeholders and employees.

At the same time, we are evaluating various opportunities, from single residential projects to industrial parks, logistics assets, and urban developments on a bigger scale that provide longer sustainability of pipeline. By leveraging deep local expertise and networks, we are making efforts to grow our portfolio of these facilities both in the north and south regions.

Social distancing and construction stoppage have seriously affected the progress of real estate projects. What were the main difficulties that CapitaLand encountered during the epidemic in Vietnam?

The pandemic has created significant challenges to CapitaLand Group at both its headquarters and key markets including Vietnam. Amid this unprecedented situation, the health and safety of our employees, residents at our properties, along with the stakeholder trust in our business growth remain our top priority.

In Vietnam, we adhere to the strict guidelines put in place by the government and have applied the work-from-home policy for employees in June to mitigate health risks. The major change of this policy is the shift to virtual meetings and the focus on digitalisation applied in most of our business activities.

In terms of our business, we are proud to have an experienced team that has been contributing to maintaining our operations from project development to handover and marketing activities. Despite numerous challenges and limitations caused by the pandemic, the completion of handing over the majority of 1,400 units of Feliz en Vista and d'Edge Thao Dien (Ho Chi Minh City), and the commencement of operations of Capital Place, an international Grade A office tower in Hanoi, are the key milestones marked in 2020.

By Bich Ngoc

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