Investment from China into European real estate increased by 22% in 2015 from 2014 reaching €8.5bn, according to recent research by property consulting firm Cushman & Wakefield. Key developments include a broader approach from Chinese investors to sectors and geographies. The past year also saw private and listed companies grow their holdings alongside more corporate activity, the report said, with expectations that this will continue into 2016. 

The changes in 2015 have seen investment moving toward the European continent – the UK’s chunk of investment dropped from 80% to 56% in 2015. France accounted for 27% of investment, and German, southern European and Benelux markets also saw increased flows. Investors have also expanded their spread in terms of sectors; inflows are expected to target more retail, logistics, and hospitality and tourism space.

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Ted Li, head of Cushman & Wakefield’s Europe, Middle East and Africa China desk, said: “In line with trends last year, we see a continued focus on the continent with more investment flowing into Germany, in particular. Equally, we see a continued shift away from offices with investment in retail growing and a focus too towards industrial and logistics assets. While some institutional money will continue to seek long-income assets, those with an existing footprint will consider value-added opportunities as they seek to enhance returns.”