The 1st quarter of 2014, can be seen a challenging start for Malaysian in terms of almost everything that essential.

From RM5 a bowl of noodle increase to RM6 can be challenging to average income Malaysian. And i do not want to mumble about the good and services that had increase. I think every single one of Malaysian can feel it and understand, this is something we cannot run from. Need not to explain further.

With most of the essential household items increase, it’s already so much burden to most of us.

By end of January, we started to experience dryer season with no rain at all for almost 2 months.

To make things worse, we are hit by strong haze from burning season at neighbouring country and because of dryer season even our own land had burnt easily that contribute to this hazy season.

With this being said, we are hit by the worst season ever. And therefore, water rationing have to come in place. Even now in April we are still experience this water rationing and might continue for another 2-3 months, and i would said it’s pretty challenging to some of us.

After that, our country being hit with another tragic with MH370.We can’t imagined how the family member going through this difficult time but may god give them the strength that needed to walk through this crucial time.

You can basically read about MH370 everywhere in the world, from international media to local news and it’s still being mystery to everyone. What had happen?

With MH370 missing, Chinese citizen had been criticised Malaysian government for failing to handle the matter well. And whole nation being hit by this especially in social media.

But, what we do not know is Chinese citizen are one of the most important contribution to country investment for economic, property sector and tourism.

Many Chinese travellers to Malaysia had cancelled their trip due to this event.

“In the past two weeks, the number of clients from northern China going to Malaysia has dropped by 50%,” Dun Jidong, a senior marketing manager at, China’s largest travel booking website, told the South China Morning Post (SCMP).

Following MH370’s disappearance, Putrajaya had suspended its Visit Malaysia 2014 tourism campaign.

Even, our lovely panda being postpone from coming to Malaysia until further notice.

In Johor, mainland Chinese developers have bought chunks of land there while individual Chinese house buyers, deterred by anti-speculation measures in Hong Kong, Singapore and China itself, have fanned out into the global property market. Malaysian properties are considered cheap by comparison.

Johor-based Landserve valuer and executive director Wee Soon Chit says the MH 370 tragedy will affect Johor’s tourism and property purchasers in the short term as it is the intention (of Chinese developers) that their countrymen buy into their products.

Says Steven Ng, managing director of Johor-based property firm Cheston International : “Whether the Chinese investors will refrain from investing or buying properties here is left to be seen but in the short term it would have negative connotations. This negative sentiment may take a few months to recover. This is provided the final episode of this unfortunate saga is played out favourably.

“(But) you can expect our name to be dragged through mud in China, and their perception of us (our products, people, exports) to go downhill. These are the things that cause them to pull their brakes (on us),” says Ng. The loss of MH 370 and the trail of events that followed have drawn the world’s attention to the security issues in the country. In the short term of six months to a year, it is expected to affect Johor in particular, real estate professionals say.

Do you know, the soaring household debt of 86.8% of gross domestic product at the end of 2013, from 80.5% a year ago, according to Bank Negara, continues to cast a shadow over the sector.

Although much of the speculation has been weeded off with the removal of developers’ interest-bearing schemes (DIBS), property prices remain high as it is deemed to be “the safest investment with lucrative returns in Malaysia. The low interest rates is also discouraging savings. At 86.8%, Malaysian households are among the most highly indebted in Asia.

Earlier this week, we heard more measures to curb lending to the property sector may be introduced.

So, do you think we will have challenging property market ahead?

To make matter worse, last 2 weeks kidnapping of two women from a resort off Semporna, Sabah, may further strain ties between Malaysian and China and dampen tourist arrivals, as one of the victims is a 29-year-old tourist from Shanghai.

By this being said, even though we have the most challenging year ahead, but I still believe every cloud has a silver lining.

Hope we will come together as a proud nation in these difficult time.