LOCAL buyers still make up the bulk of private home buyers in Singapore. Permanent residents (PRs) made up 13 per cent and foreigners 12 per cent of sales in the second quarter respectively.

Similarly, speculative activity in the private property market is driven mostly by locals. PRs and foreigners accounted for about 27 per cent of all sub-sales in the past two years.

National Development Minister Mah Bow Tan revealed these figures yesterday in Parliament in response to MPs who asked if PRs and foreigners were 'flipping' properties in Singapore.

Flipping, or a sub-sale, takes place when a buyer purchases a new apartment, then resells it before construction is complete.

Mr Mah added that the second quarter sales figures were close to the average of 12 per cent and 10 per cent for PRs and foreigners respectively over the past two years. PRs and foreigners also account for a relatively low 6 per cent of all landed home sales.

As a cosmopolitan city, it was important for Singapore to let foreigners and PRs buy properties here, while monitoring 'how much of the market is actually made up of foreigners and PRs', he said.

S'poreans driving home sales up