Welcome to CBRE’s 2020 Greater China Market Outlook. This annual flagship report identifies the key trends and strategies CBRE expects to shape the office, retail, logistics and investment property markets in Greater China over the coming year. Highlights include:


  • While the signing of the Phase-One trade agreement between China and the U.S. in mid-January has boosted business sentiment across the region, the coronavirus outbreak is expected to have a significant, albeit short-lived, effect on the China economy in H1 2020, with a recovery expected to commence in the latter half of Q2 2020.


  • Financial sector opening-up will bode well for office demand, while 5G adoption is set to support the growth of “ABC” (AI, Blockchain and Cloud Computing) tech industries. Despite its still volatile business environment, Hong Kong SAR will continue to serve as a major financial hub for Greater China.


  • Office markets will shift in favour of tenants. There will be ample opportunities for flight-to-quality relocations, with occupiers expected to prioritise portfolio agility as they seek to navigate the rapidly shifting business environment.


  • The focus of Chinese consumption will continue to shift back to the domestic market. Chinese brands – which can quickly adapt to shifting consumer trends and possess strong homegrown appeal - will play a more dominant role in retail leasing demand.


  • CBRE expects to see the development of more smart logistics facilities across Greater China in the coming year. Build-to-suit projects will be necessary to meet occupiers’ facility specifications and technological requirements.


  • Although investors will continue to benefit from low interest rates, room to ride on the rental growth cycle is limited. CBRE expects structural investment themes to become more prominent in 2020, led by the “3Ds”:  Different sectors, Defensive assets and District-specific plays.