Todayonline.com | MARCH 30, 2013
SINGAPORE — Some 30 per cent of the 250 tenants at Pearls Centre — which has been gazetted for acquisition — did not receive an ex gratia payment as part of their compensation package, according to the building’s management.
These tenants are appealing to the authorities, which announced the S$450 million compensation package on Wednesday.
Said Mr Kok Chee Choon, committee member of Pearls Centre management: “We’ve received more than 10 calls from those who did not receive the ex gratia payment. After we’ve gathered their feedback, we’ll be appealing to the authorities next week to try and get some compensation for these tenants.”
The Singapore Land Authority (SLA) said it considers tenants’ age, the duration of their operations, the scale and nature of their business, and whether they are Singapore citizens, when deciding on the ex gratia payment.
Mr Ravishankar, who has been running an Internet cafe on the ground floor of the centre for about six years, was among those who did not receive the ex gratia payment, which can be as high as S$30,000. He called the SLA to ask why, and was told the decisions were made on a “case-by-case” basis. “They asked me to appeal through email,” he added.
Compensation for properties at the multi-storey Pearls Centre varies.
According to Pearls Centre management, the compensation for commercial units facing the road is S$9,000 per square foot. Shops that are near the escalator get S$3,000 per square foot (sq ft). Other areas get at least S$1,200 per sq ft. As for residential properties, the figure is S$1,100 per sq ft.
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