Singapore has the best prospects for investment in Asia-Pacific

Singapore presents the best prospect in the Asia-Pacific region for investment, according to “Emerging Trends in Real Estate Asia Pacific 2020”, a real estate forecast jointly published by the Urban Land Institute (ULI) and PwC.

The city-state saw a surge in transactions in 1H2019, mostly driven by cross-border capital, and volumes are expected to remain strong in 2H2019. With a glut in office supply absorbed, sentiment for Singaporean assets has now rebounded from the lows of 2017.

With vacancies now minimal, investor confidence has returned, with foreign investors leading the charge as buying activity surges.

Tokyo, Sydney and Melbourne also placed within the top five, reflecting overall investor preference for regional markets that are large, liquid and defensive, the report states.

Meanwhile, Ho Chi Minh City, in third place, is the only emerging market that investors viewed favourably due to its strong economic growth as it absorbs Chinese manufacturing capacity moving offshore. The city is also in first place for city development prospects for 2020.

Aside from Ho Chi Minh City, only Bangkok and Mumbai – ranked at 11th and 12th for investment prospects respectively – were among the emerging-market cities that made it to the top 10 for development prospects.

ULI anticipates that with fears of recession looming in the US, investors will always be wary of emerging markets, as past experience showed that in times of economic uncertainty, illiquidity and currency volatility make these markets unsafe for investors.