Singapore office rents seen rising twice as fast as Hong Kong

People along the Marina Bay Waterfront Promenade with the skyline of Singapore's Central Business District and Marina Bay Financial Centre stands in the background on Apr 16, 2017.
People along the Marina Bay Waterfront Promenade with the skyline of Singapore's Central Business District and Marina Bay Financial Centre stands in the background on Apr 16, 2017.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE (BLOOMBERG) - Singapore office rents are set to post the biggest gains among Asian cities as an increase in demand runs into moderating supply, according to Cushman & Wakefield Inc.

Office rents in all major Asian cities, with the exception of Tokyo, are set to rise over the next two years, according to forecasts from Cushman. Singapore will lead the pack, with rents forecast to surge 25 per cent, more than double the 12 per cent growth forecast in Hong Kong's central business district.

"The best is yet to come for the office leasing market," said the Singapore-based Sigrid Zialcita, managing director for Asia Pacific research at Cushman. "Conditions haven't looked this good since the spurt in the aftermath of the financial crisis."

The extra office space that tenants will rent in major cities tracked by Cushman in the Asia Pacific region will surge to 120 million square feet in 2018, the highest level in data going back to 2005, according to Zialcita.

In Singapore, the rent recovery is set to gain traction as supply begins to moderate this year. Rents are forecast to climb to US$100.80 per square foot a year in 2019 from US$80.53 per square foot in 2017, according to Cushman's forecasts.