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November 30, 2011updated 04 Apr 2017 3:45pm

Singapore to overtake Hong Kong as Asia’s financial centre by 2016, says poll

A webinar poll conducted by real estate agent Jones Lang LaSalle has revealed that Singapore is the front-runner to become Asia’s financial centre by 2016.

By BBR Staff

The webinar had 48 participants from Asia, Australia, Europe and the US were they were questioned about Hong Kong’s real estate market versus Singapore’s real estate market.

The participants were asked which of the two cities had the best opportunity to be Asia’s leading financial centre in the next five years. 55% of respondents voted for Singapore while 48% voted in favour of Hong Kong.

The poll was close and Jeremy Sheldon, managing director of markets for Jones Lang LaSalle in Asia-Pacific, said the reason for this close result was that Singapore and Hong Kong are Asia’s two premier financial hubs and while they are often thought of as competing centres, they are increasingly seen as complementary because companies have compelling reasons for locating in one city or the other.

"[G]eographically, Hong Kong remains the gateway to China while Singapore provides access to significant growth in South East Asia and particularly Indonesia, which is currently experiencing strong economic growth," said Sheldon.

But one of the biggest differences in the two regions is the so called "planning regime": while Singapore is well planned, Hong Kong’s master plan is evolving, said Sheldon.

"Singapore has reaped the benefits of a well-developed master plan that ensures the right space is available in the right locations. This includes space with large floor-plates in the CBD as well as suburban locations that are connected to the CBD to ensure location choice and price differential," he elaborates.

The other factor going in favour of Singapore its capital markets.


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