Commercial property: Bold venture farther south and east to improve returns.

By Jan Cienski in Warsaw

As the old saying goes, property is all about location. In central and eastern Europe that used to mean only two places: Poland and Prague – the rest of the region was deemed too economically risky and politically unstable after the crisis

Mixed picture: Financial Plaza in Bucharest, Romania

Most of central Europe south of the Czech Republic “is a step too far unless you’re an opportunistic investor”, says Mike Atwell, head of CEE capital markets with CBRE, a property consultancy. However, the global low-risk environment is changing the equation.

Conservative investors, mainly from Germany, as well as sovereign wealth funds, have flooded into prime Polish and Prague property. While property yields in Germany have settled at about 5 per cent, in Poland and the Czech Republic they are 1.5 percentage points higher – for a similar risk profile.

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