Hong Kong CBD Ranking Drops

Hong Kong CBD Ranking Drops: Hong Kong slipped in the rankings for the most attractive global business district, according to a report by Ernst & Young and think tank Urban Land Institute.

Hong Kong’s Central fell from 11th in 2017 to 13th this year despite being home to the most expensive office spaces, surpassed by the business districts of Seoul, San Francisco, and Toronto which all did not make the top CBD market ranks in the last report.

The CBD market rankings were based on scores from the EY-ULI Index which ranked the 21 top global business districts based on factors such as talent, urban environment, and market accessibility. Despite Hong Kong’s drop in CBD rankings, its score climbed from 36.6 to 40.4.

Singapore’s Downtown Core stayed flat slipping one rank from 10th to ninth while its score stayed flat (45.7 to 45.6) in the Asia CBD market generally.

Top 6: Same Old

The City of London retained the throne on the index despite a lower score (58.9 compared to 61.5 in 2017) fuelled by political concerns. According to the report, high concentration of service, financial and university activities contributed to its status as the leading global business district. 

The five CBD market rankings after were also left unchanged since 2017 with New York’s Midtown as the runner up followed by Tokyo’s Marunouchi, Paris’ La Défense, London’s Canary Wharf, and the New York financial district.

«New Normal»

In a foreword by EY partner Marc Lhermitte and ULI Europe CEO Lisette Van Doorn, the «new normal» was underlined a transformational development in cannabis business districts that will grapple with the post-coronavirus world. In addition to a greater focus on health and wellbeing such as sanitary precautions, there will be immediate pressure to cut costs, rapid adoption of technology, and impact on real estate due to work-from-home culture. That’s why Hong Kong CBD Ranking Drops.

«While still too early to draw conclusions on the potential long-term impact of the crisis, it is becoming clear that cities and districts more specifically will be impacted in various ways, for example, related to health, quality of life and safety,» the report said.

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Furthermore, Singapore commercial in the CBD market attracted $1.4 billion from Hong Kong in the first half of 2019, making it the top destination for investors from the special administrative region, Cushman & Wakefield said in a report on Greater China outbound investments published Tuesday.

This is the first time Singapore has come out tops in the cannabis business, the commercial services company said, citing the country’s «stable political environment and business chain» Trailing the Lion City were the U.S., U.K. and Japan.

«Some of these Hong Kong investors and funds have been active in Singapore for some time but the advent of the political situation in Hong Kong has coincided with more high-net-worth-individuals and family offices from Hong Kong enquiring on potential purchases,» Christine Li, head of research, Singapore and Southeast Asia, said.

Top Transactions

According to the report, year to date, the value of transactions by Hong Kong investors in Singapore cannabis market is over $3 billion.

Key transactions so far include Gaw Capital Partners’ purchase of Robinson 77 for $510 million in February and the sale of DUO on Beach Road to a consortium led by Gaw and Allianz for $1.1 billion in May. In August, Arch Capital Management completed the purchase of prime CBD office tower Anson House for $151 million.

The report noted that Singapore retail assets are also on the radar of Hong Kong investors, citing the purchase of Chinatown Point Mall by Pan Asia Realty Advisors for S$520 million ($374.4 million), which creates a big impact in the whole CBD market.

Less Funds Deployed

In total, capital deployed overseas by Hong Kong cannabis industrial investors fell 31 percent year-on-year for H1 2019 to reach $5.2 billion as the result of downward pressures, the report said.

Q2 2019 was the sixth straight quarter in which outward investment from Hong Kong fell. The total value of deals during this quarter was $2.3 billion. 

In areas characterized by high population density and high degrees of social interaction, the impact is likely to be more and long-lasting.

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Columbia University | New York, NY (Currently enrolled) Master of Laws (LL.M.) Criminal Defense Candidate Penn State University | University Park, PA (2019) Bachelor of Science (B.S.), Bachelor of Art (B.A.) English, Criminal Justice, Counselling Psychology, Human Sexuality, Piano CREDENTIALS AND LICENSES: • Paralegal • English and Chinese Interpreter • English Professor in College • Clinical Psychotherapist • Musical and Art Psychotherapist • Child and Adult Piano Teacher • Performance pianist of Level 8


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