Commercial property investors attract stable Russians
Companies in the UK could be set to build up a stronger presence in Russia after the country was flagged up as an attractive market for commercial property investors.
According to CBRE, foreign investors have been drawn to Russia in greater numbers partly because its economy managed to stabilise last year. The nation's commercial real estate was said to be seen by many as a particularly good option for those looking to tie up funds in overseas assets.
While domestic investors still dominate the market, the amount of activity among foreign buyers went up significantly in 2011. As a result, the number of business money transfers between the UK and Russia may be about to go up during the next few months.
However, CBRE stressed that while overall investment activity in the Russian real estate market reached record levels last year, it does not expect to see more new ground being broken in 2012.
Christopher Peters, the group's director of research in Russia, commented: "With slightly lower economic growth in Russia and globally in 2012 than in 2011, the record level is unlikely to be exceeded or repeated this year".
Figures from CBRE showed that the average deal that took place last year was worth more than €105.6 million (£88.5 million), with a total of €4.55 billion being invested in the market during this period.
Mr Peters noted that this is more than 1.5 times higher than the amount recorded in 2008 – the last time investment activity hit new heights.
"For the first time in a few years, retail attracted the largest portion and accounted for the largest deal," he observed.
Moscow was found to be especially popular, along with St Petersburg, Murmansk, Kaliningrad and Kaluga.
According to official statistics, gross domestic product in Russia went up by 4.3 per cent in 2011.