As one of the newest members of the European Union and 15th largest countries in Europe, the potential for economic growth and possibility for doing business in Bulgaria is endless. The country’s population count is at 7.97 million, with the market that comes with it. So investors looking to export to a country, which also happens to offer some of the most competitive business costs in the region, should look to Bulgaria’s lowest tax rates in Europe and generally low labour costs. Continue reading Recovering GDP Growth In Bulgaria Points To a Thriving Bulgarian Economy
As economic recovery gathers pace in Hungary, the overall property market has seen improvement in the second quarter of 2014, according to Cushman & Wakefield’s ‘Marketbeat: Country Snapshots: Hungary’ report. Driven by domestic demand and fixed investments, the country has seen a significant acceleration of GDP growth (2.7 per cent) –more than double last year’s 1.2 per cent. That’s expected to moderate in 2015, at 2.3 per cent, but still remain high and fully recovery its pre-recession peak of 2008.
A general trend upwards in demand in the real estate market continues across the EU Baltic States of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, according to the Ober-Haus ‘Real Estate Report 2014’ focussing on the capitals of Vilnius, Riga and Tallinn.
Poland is already a business services leader in Europe and is still going up. In the last two years, the market has grown by 50 per cent. Since the beginning of 2013, 66 new BPO centres have been established and 18,000 new jobs have been created in Poland, says the ABSL’s ‘Business services sector in Poland’ report. According to analysts, the total number of employees should increase from the current 128,000 to 150,000 people by the end of 2015.
Eighty-eight per cent of companies from France investing in Poland over the last 20 years are satisfied with their investments and 64 per cent are planning further development of their companies, says the ’20 years of French investment in Poland’ report by KPMG and the French Chamber of Industry and Commerce in Poland.
The CEE is still one of the cheapest regions in terms of property prices in Europe, according to the Deloitte Property Index 2013. Of the 15 European countries indexed, Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic presented an overall decline in property prices, to match its either stable or decreasing number of initiated projects per 1,000 citizens in the residential market.
Between 2008 and 2011, the number of newly set up companies employing at least 10 people continued to grow. Only a few other countries, including Germany, Luxembourg, Austria and Sweden, can boast the same, according to Deutsche Bank and Eurostat. Apart from that small group, the economic slowdown had a negative impact on most countries: Spain and Portugal; Latvia, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria and Slovenia.
In 2015, growth in 25 countries, including Saudi Arabia, Chile and China; India, South Africa and the UAE, and of course the Czech Republic and Poland, will exceed 4.5 per cent, according to EY’s Rapid-growth markets report. This development will be enhanced by increasing investments in infrastructure, high technologies as well as a growing and ageing population.
Poland has become one of the best logistics markets in Europe. As a result, 2014 should see further growth in demand for warehouse space as the country strengthens its role as a logistics centre for the CEE region, according to CBRE’s Poland Industrial Destinations 2014.
Only 30 per cent of the top 100 global outsourcing companies are already in Central and Eastern Europe but there is still room for the remaining 70 per cent, says Collier International’s Outsourcing and Offshoring in CEE: A Rapidly Changing Landscape Report.
Following a slump in 2012, FDI flows are once again rising globally, according to the UNCTAD World Investment Report 2014. Of the 9 per cent increase in flows reaching €1.07 trillion worldwide, Europe remains the largest FDI recipient, while emerging markets are reaping some of the bigger benefits, reaching 54 per cent of that total and a new high of €575 billion.
Property in Central and Eastern Europe is becoming increasingly popular among investors. In Q2 2014, the total value of investment transactions in Poland, the Czech Republic, Romania, Slovakia and Hungary reached €1.14 billion and was 73 per cent higher than in Q2 2013, says a recent report by Cushman & Wakefield. Since the beginning of this year, the region has seen an investment of about €2.5 billion — 38 per cent more than in the first half of 2013.