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‘The Dutch market punches above its weight in Europe’

The Netherlands punches above its weight in the European real estate market, delegates heard at Real Asset Media’s Netherlands Investment Briefing, which was held last week at Taylor Wessing’s headquarters in London.

‘It has strengthened its position as the 4th largest investment market in Europe, which is remarkable for such a small country,’ said Raphaël Rietema, Director, EMEA Strategy & Research, CBRE Global Investors. 

Netherlands Keynote: Raphaël Rietema, Director, EMEA Strategy & Research CBRE Global Investors
Filmed at the Netherlands Investment Briefing, London by Real Asset Media.

It now sits behind Germany, the UK and France and just ahead of Spain with an investment volume of €19 bln in the first three quarters of 2019. By Q3 last year the figure was higher, €22 bln, but according to Rietema Q4 will look better, because there is a lot of activity and a lot of liquidity in the market’.

The Dutch market has become much more diversified in recent years, but residential stands out as the star sector, followed by offices, industrial, retail and hotels. The Netherlands have the second-biggest residential market in Europe after Germany, worth €6 bln.

‘The investor base has also become much more diversified’, said Rietema. ‘The market used to be dominated by domestic players with a 60/40 ratio, but now it is the other way around’. 

The office sector, which used to be oversupplied, has been transformed. ‘Vacancy rates have been falling for the past ten years and now they are extremely low, especially in Amsterdam’s CBD’.

Amsterdam has also become the third city in Europe for tech-based employment after Dublin and Berlin and ahead of London. ‘This is the market that has seen the steepest rental growth,’ said Rietema. ‘It is a structural trend that is set to continue and it will result in more rental growth in the future’.

In the increasingly intertwined logistics and retail sectors, demand is such that vacancy rates are low despite a lot of development activity. 

‘Demand drivers for logistics are changing,’ said Rietema. ‘Now it is less about trade and exports and more about the restructuring of supply chains because of e-commerce. In five years’ time internet sales will be 21% of all retail sales compared to 14% now’.

The Netherlands will catch up with the UK and be far ahead of other European countries.

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