In Asia Pacific, real estate has grabbed the headlines several times in 2017 -- from Hong Kong recording the world's highest transaction for a single office block with the sale of The Center for $5.2 billion; to hotel conglomerate Accor's $1.2 billion acquisition of Australia's Mantra Group's portfolio of serviced apartments; and the $1.5 billion sale of Singapore's Asia Square Tower 2 to CapitaLand Investment Trust.
Investor appetite for real estate assets appears to be unfettered by the geopolitical and socioeconomic challenges that have dominated the news this year. Asia remains an engine of global economic growth with gross domestic product in two of its biggest economies -- China and India -- growing at a healthy clip. Japan's economy continues to expand, up for seven consecutive quarters and with a solid outlook. Over in Southeast Asia, Singapore is enjoying a resurgence in both its office and residential sectors after two years of sluggishness and investor sentiment towards the republic is warming up.
Looking ahead, JLL's research forecasts that regional transaction volumes will grow 5% to reach $135 to $140 billion in 2018, driven by continued momentum in core real estate markets and increased interest in developing destinations such as India.
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