UK Property Remains Attractive to GCC Investors Despite Pound’s Recovery

Despite the recovery of the UK pound since the tenure of former Prime Minister Liz Truss, the country’s real estate market continues to hold appeal for investors from the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), according to Amit Seth, Managing Director of Qima Real Estate. Seth highlighted the country’s political stability, presence of tech hubs like London’s Silicon Roundabout and Cambridge, and its renowned universities as factors that continue to draw regional investors to the UK’s real estate sector.

Qima Real Estate, a company specializing in selling UK real estate to regional investors, sees an opportunity in the relatively weak pound. During its lowest point in September 2022, GCC investors were saving approximately 21% on their investments. While the pound has strengthened since then, investors can still benefit from around 10% savings based on current exchange rates.

While acknowledging that the UK is still in a recovery phase post-pandemic, Seth noted that investment levels have increased since the pandemic’s end, not only in the UK but also across Europe, with the UK, Germany, and France leading in foreign direct investment (FDI) attraction.

Seth also highlighted rental trends, stating that rents in the UK rose by an average of 6% in 2022 and are projected to increase by 5% in 2023 and 4% in 2024. Currently, the North of the UK offers an average rental yield of 7.4%, while the South provides a yield of 5.2%.

Qima Real Estate aims to leverage the strong relationship between the UK and GCC, which sees an annual trade volume of ยฃ45 billion ($55.55 billion). The company recognizes the value GCC investors place on the UK real estate market’s favorable returns. Seth also noted that sovereign wealth funds from the GCC have over $2 trillion invested in the UK, primarily in real estate, and this figure is expected to grow.

As the GCC investors continue to seek investment opportunities abroad, the allure of the UK’s real estate market endures, benefiting from the country’s economic prospects, cultural ties, and the potential for attractive returns on investment.

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