Singapore's overseas real estate investment jumped 35% to US$19.9b

July 11,  2018

Most of the capital was directed to the US, Australia, and the UK.

Across the Asia Pacific, Singapore had the third largest real estate capital injections into other countries, Knight Frank revealed. Outflows from Singapore jumped 35% from US$14.8b to US$19.9b, greater than the growth in China (8%) but less than that in Hong Kong (41%).

According to Active Capital: The 2018 Report, capital outflow from Singapore and Hong Kong was remarkable as limited local liquidity and diversification strategies encouraged investors to look overseas.

Knight Frank Asia Pacific head of capital markets Neil Brookes commented, “Asia-Pacific was the largest exporter of capital in 2017 despite a significant slowdown from China due to government capital controls. The reduction in outbound Chinese capital was countered by significant increases in Singaporean, Japanese and, to a lesser extent, South Korean capital emigrating to the US and Europe.”

Meanwhile, the top 20 routes of cross-border real estate capital reinforce the position that China, Hong Kong and Singapore are the largest exporters of capital from Asia Pacific in 2017.

Singapore investment to the US hit US$6.6b. Its real estate investment in Australia and the UK hit US$3.3b and US$2.8b, respectively.

Knight Frank Singapore senior director and head of research Lee Nai Jia said, “Investors based in Singapore seek income-generating assets in advanced economies to diversify risk, as these overseas assets also offer a source of recurrent income.”

Knight Frank Singapore executive director and head of investment and capital markets Ian Loh added, “Whilst Singapore is a net exporter of capital, we continue to see inflows of capital from Hong Kong and China investors, both for development sites and investment properties.”