Belfast ,
04
May
2018
|
10:48
Europe/London

Brexit worries ease for commercial property occupiers - CBRE NI

Occupiers are following progress in the Brexit negotiations closely but worries about the impact on their business has eased slightly as more clarity starts to emerge about the exit deal. However, the survey respondents are typically large businesses with representation across many countries, which is likely to dilute their concerns.
Brian Lavery, Managing Director, CBRE Northern Ireland

Commercial property occupiers across Europe are less concerned that Brexit will have a detrimental impact on their business, according to a survey from CBRE.

The proportion of occupiers worried about the negative impact from the UK leaving the EU fell to 39% in 2017 compared to 53% the previous year, the real estate agent said in its report Brexit: A Guide for Real Estate Decision Makers.

The statistic emerged from a survey of 100 major occupiers across Europe by CBRE, most of which have pan-European or global operations.

In the UK, levels of concern have also fallen.

Only 38% of UK occupiers had significant or very significant concerns about Brexit in late 2017 compared to 65% the previous year.

“There will be substantial political noise and turbulence throughout 2018,” the report said. “Although an agreement on withdrawal issues has taken time to secure, it is not likely to have significant impact on real estate.”

Brian Lavery, Managing Director, CBRE Northern Ireland said: “Occupiers are following progress in the Brexit negotiations closely but worries about the impact on their business has eased slightly as more clarity starts to emerge about the exit deal. However, the survey respondents are typically large businesses with representation across many countries, which is likely to dilute their concerns.”

CBRE's report argues that real estate decision makers will be most focused on how the Brexit process handles migration controls on the UK labour market, trade restrictions with the EU, and regulatory and tax change.

The report said: “Trade access is likely to be no worse than the EU-Canadian deal, and no better than the EU-Swiss deal. Migration controls will be tighter than they are now, but remain extremely uncertain.”

Meanwhile, two thirds of UK-based respondents to the survey who identified specific mitigating measures said their firms were undertaking scenario planning while a third said they were thinking of changing their locational footprint.

While some relocations are likely, CBRE said the total number will be lower than expected.

“Assuming that there is an acceptable UK-EU deal over trade in services, CBRE’s view is that financial services job relocations will in the end amount to the low tens of thousands, over a very extended period, and not just because of Brexit.”

CBRE said Brexit will be a long and surprising journey.

“Exiting the EU will be a long and complex process with many twists and turns. Our current view is that it is more likely than not that the UK will, in the end, secure an agreement with the EU and thus that a ‘hard exit’ will be avoided. However, 2017 did bring a surprise (a snap UK general election) and we expect the remainder of 2018 to also contain its fair share of surprises.”

The full report can be found here: https://bit.ly/2JRW4fU