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China's 'second-tier' cities will fuel property growth
By Wang Ying (
Updated: 2009-03-11 19:17

By 2020, more than 90 percent of China's commercial property trading will take place in second- and third-tier cities, presenting a slew of opportunities for real estate players who do not simply focus on places like Beijing and Shanghai, a new property report says.

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The report, released by real estate consultancy Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) on Wednesday, showed that over the next decade, enormous development potential exists in China's 40 secondary and tertiary ranking cities.

"China's second- and third-tier cities continue to grow and experience dynamic development. With massive infrastructure investment, these markets are increasingly accessible at a time when the focus is on domestic consumption rather than export-oriented," said Michael Klibaner, head of research for JLL Shanghai.

In the office sector, Tianjin and Chongqing have visions of becoming the economic centers of northern and western China respectively, and Nanjing is gaining status as a rising location for regional headquarters.

Among the 40 rising urban stars, Chengdu, Qingdao and Zhengzhou are expected to stand out as prime logistics centers since they all possess strategic locations, access to large population bases and growing roles as railway hubs or ports.

The report, titled "China 40 - the rising urban stars", postulates that although the retail market in China's secondary cities may face turbulence in the short term, cities such as Changsha, Wuhan and Wenzhou possess relatively undeveloped retail markets, and are well-positioned for a period of substantial growth.

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