A total of 2,942 properties worth RM542.94 million remained unsold in Sabah up to the first quarter of this year.
"Of this, 2,590 units are residential properties, 323 units of commercial shops and 29 units of industrial buildings," said Assistant Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Edward Yong.
"Apart from these, there are also properties under construction but identified as unsold properties totalling 1,741 residential units and 201 units of commercial shops."
Yong said these unsold properties reflected a supply that was not absorbed by the market due to a mismatch between demand and supply.
This can be considered a waste of the investment funds of the financial sector, he added, when launching a briefing on the Property Information System Malaysia (Prism) computerisation system at the Federal Administrative Complex, Thursday.
Prism, to be implemented as a product of the Valuation and Property Services Department's (JPPH) National Property Information Centre (Napic), focuses on transmitting data through online facilities from the existing manual transmission.
The objective of Napic is to provide accurate, comprehensive and timely information regarding the demand and supply of property in the country to government agencies, property developers and all parties involved in the property industry.
Hence, Yong appealed to all parties involved in the property industry to use the Napic property data as part of information gathering before making decisions on their development projects.
Throughout the country, about 23,000 houses worth RM3.7 billion were not sold in the country over the last ten years.
According to the JPPH these residences were completed but that there had been no takers following the 1997-1998 financial crisis and other economic factors.
However, JPPH Director-General Valuation Dato' Abdullah Thalith MD. Thani, who disclosed this, said the figure is negligible given that about 4.3 million houses were built during the same period.
"In addition, the 23,000 units only account for 0.5 per cent of the six million units of properties in the country, including commercial shops and industrial properties," he said.
Abdullah said, Johor had the highest number of unsold properties totaling 6,513 residential units worth about RM1.17 billion, which represents 28 per cent of the total properties in the country. Next comes Selangor with 3,827 units worth about RM635 million and Kedah involving 2,619 units worth about RM237 million.
The briefing on Thursday was for the public sector as well as the private sector like housing developers, land dealers, and real estate agents among others.
Also present were JPPH Sabah director Sautarwin Marto and Sabah Land and Survey Department Director Datuk Osman Jamal.