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Overseas investors continue to seek London commercial property

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Strong investment by overseas corporates remains a key characteristic of the central London commercial property market, it has been reported.

According to Hawker Beechcraft Corporation (HBC), some £39 billion worth of property in the City is currently owned by foreign investors.

German businesses are the biggest foreign investors, owning around 13.5 million sq ft of office space at an estimated valuation of £12 billion.

This represents almost a third of the total overseas investment in the City, the analysis revealed.

Investors from the Middle East and Ireland are also well-represented, owning £4.5 billion and £3 billion of commercial property respectively.

In total, 52 per cent of all office space – amounting to 44 million sq ft of office space – is held by foreign investors.

“London remains one of the biggest and most influential financial capitals in the world and it is therefore no surprise to see that commercial properties in the City are still very much sought-after by overseas businesses,” said Sean McGeough, HBC president for Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific.

“Not only is London perfect for conducting business on a global scale, but it is also supported by a high number of business airports such as London City, Biggin Hill and Farnborough.”

This allows for travel into the heart of the city from continental Europe within a matter of hours, he explained.

Strong demand for commercial property undoubtedly helps inflate purchase prices for office space within the city.

This is why many firms choose to rent serviced office space, rather than purchase their own London premises outright.

By renting rather than purchasing commercial office space in the capital, businesses can secure prime London locations without a significant capital outlay.