Subprime crisis to affect Portugal in 2008

THE EFFECTS of the credit crisis in the United States mortgage and housing market are only likely to filter through to Portugal next year.

According to real estate analysts and consultants Cushman & Wakefield, 2007 will go down as an exceptionally good year in terms of investment in the national property market.

In its half year market study published on October 3, Cushman & Wakefield states that “the effect of the crisis in America will only be felt in the Portuguese market in 2008, with regards to both national and foreign investment.”

Shopping centres

The consultants say that all the signs so far for 2007 point to an exceptionally good year in property investment and transactions, with historic volumes of business totalling around one billion euros (1,000 million euros).

In the office rental market, this year is also likely to beat all records, overtaking the 200,000 square metre barrier for occupied space. The driving force behind such phenomenal rates of growth is the multinational companies, demand, the volume of business and the rise of new services.

By the end of 2007, six new shopping centres are slated to open in Portugal, adding an extra 126,000 square metres to the total area in this sector.

“These numbers prove that the shopping centre market in Portugal is not showing signs of slowing down despite the first half of the year being weak in this area,” states C&W.

Within the next few months, the following shopping centres are to be launched: Centro 8ª Avenida, São João da Madeira, Alegro in Alfragide, Arena Shopping in Torres Vedras, Dolce Vita, Funchal, Forum Castelo Branco, Porto Plaza and Trindade Domus, all in Porto.


C&W states that the launch of these shopping centres is evidence of “a clear decentralisation strategy being adopted by the real estate promoters in this segment of the market in order to increase their market share and diversify their portfolios.”

The consultant believes that the number of shopping centre projects in Portugal is “surprising”. “If all the shopping centres in the Regional Economic Strategic Plan are given the green light, by 2010 the market will see a boom in the area of 1.7 million square metres.”

Even in 2008, the market is likely to see significant growth in this area with another 210,000 square metres of shopping centre space being inaugurated. Among them are Palácio do Gelo (Visabeira), Olivais Shopping Centre modernisation (Mundicentre), Fórum Barreiro, Vivaci da Guarda, Maia e Caldas da Rainha (FDO Imobiliária).

Next week: See The Resident for an interview with Carlos Moedas, property market analyst at Aguirre Newman.

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