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Evergrande to restructure Faraday investment; Shui On Land inks US$1B Chinese JV

* Property giant China Evergrande Group will restructure its pledged US$2 billion investment in Faraday Future for a 32% interest in the Los Angeles-based electric car startup, after the parties agreed to drop and waive all current litigations and arbitration proceedings against each other.

China Evergrande had previously agreed to commit US$2 billion to Faraday over three years for a 45% stake in the company.

* A unit of Chinese property developer Shui On Land Ltd., a China Life Insurance (Overseas) Co. Ltd. subsidiary and certain units of Manulife Financial Corp. will invest US$1.00 billion in Chinese real estate through a joint venture. The parties agreed to allocate US$750.0 million to the initiative, which also includes the management and administration of the properties, which could be in Shanghai and other tier-1 Chinese cities.

Australia

* CoreLogic's latest home value index showed that slumping property prices gained momentum in December 2018 to end the year down 4.8% across Australia, The Australian Financial Review reported.

* Sydney's property prices have fallen 9.5% since their July 2017 peak, with 2018 being the first time the prices decreased over a 12-month period since 2012, the AFR reported, citing CoreLogic data. According to the report, AMP Capital's Shane Oliver believes prices will continue their downward slide by a further 10% in 2019, as credit tightening, apartment oversupply and changes to the capital gains tax and negative gearing weigh down on sentiment.

* Private hotelier Jerry Schwartz purchased the 169-room Hilton Surfers Paradise in Queensland for roughly A$70 million from private Chinese family group Ja Feng, The Australian reported.

* Macquarie Wealth Management said that the dampening housing market is resulting in reduced passenger growth on outbound traffic, with major tourism operators and hoteliers voicing uncertainty regarding the outlook for the sector in 2019, The Australian reported.

Hong Kong and China

* Hong Kong-based Spring Real Estate Investment Trust terminated its planned 1.65 billion-yuan purchase of the Huamao Place shopping mall in Huizhou, China, from Huamao Focus Ltd.

* Wanda Hotel Development Co. Ltd. completed its HK$878.0 million purchase of Dalian Wanda Commercial Properties Co. Ltd.'s entire shareholding in Wanda Hotel Management (Hong Kong) Co. Ltd., as part of Dalian Wanda Group Co. Ltd.'s reorganization of its hospitality business.

* A Keppel Land China Ltd. subsidiary will purchase a commercial property in Beijing's Haidian district in a 555 million-yuan deal expected to close in the first quarter.

* Analysts are projecting that Hong Kong home prices could drop by 10% to 25% in 2019, with the second half of the year tipped to offer a better opportunity to purchase a home in reportedly the world's least affordable housing market, the South China Morning Post reported.

* China's property market saw a greater number of deals in 2018 due to the government's emphasis on deleveraging, Mingtiandi reported, citing Cushman & Wakefield. U.S. private equity giant Blackstone Group LP, among other major international players, contributed significantly to deal activity in 2018, with the trend expected to continue in 2019.

India

* The GST council is likely to decrease the GST rate on under-development properties to 5% from 12% in its January meeting, but a recent survey conducted by Magicbricks revealed that approximately 57% of home buyers do not want to pay the tax, describing it as an extra burden, having already paid registration and stamp duty charges to the government, The Economic Times of India reported.

* A Reserve Bank of India report revealed prices decreased in the country over the last five years despite higher housing credit growth and better bank lending rates, the Press Trust of India reported. A substantial number of unsold homes gradually led to a moderation in price increases in the last five quarters, the report noted.

Elsewhere in Southeast Asia

* Allianz Group's real estate arm, Allianz Real Estate, is looking to invest in Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia in its bid to expand in the Asia-Pacific region in 2019, The (Singapore) Business Times reported, citing a company executive. Allianz recently bought a 20% stake in Ocean Financial Centre in Singapore for S$537.3 million.

* The Indonesian Settlement and Housing Developers Association is looking to develop 130,000 subsidized houses in 2019, after falling short by 30,000 of its 2018 target, The Jakarta Post reported. According to the report, the pessimistic target was set after considering the economic situation and existing government policy.

* India-based hotel chain OYO Hotels expanded its Malaysian footprint by opening two new hotels, the New Straits Times reported. The company already operates more than 150 properties across the country.

The Daily Dose Asia-Pacific, Real Estate edition is updated by 6:30 a.m. Hong Kong time. Some external links may require a subscription. Links are current as of publication time, and we are not responsible if those links are unavailable later.

Abdul Rehman Maqbool contributed to this report.