The possibility of U.S. sanctions on Russian banks is the key threat to a real estate sector that is already under pressure from a weakening economy and ruble devaluation in the wake of the Ukraine crisis.
As an international real estate developer Ghelamco has made its way to Russia, via Poland, from its roots in Belgium, where it began in 1985 making pre-cast concrete, which it still does from a factory in Ypres.
PNK is the biggest of the Russian warehouse developers and the most active developer in Russia's regions. Compared to most international warehouse developers, PNK follows its own strategy with a strong focus on domestic clients. It recently put into full production its own plant for prefabricated building components.
St. Petersburg has suffered a fall in tourism in the first quarter of 15 to 20 per cent due to the cancellation of trips by Americans and some Europeans. Leonid Flit, chairman of the management board of the North-Western regional department of the Russian Tourism Industry Union, linked the cancellations to recent events in Ukraine. However he expects tourism to revive in June.
Private contractors can help governments establish who will benefit from new infrastructure, who should pay and how. The calculation is especially challenging in Russia because of large differences in people's wealth, says Vincent Piron, President of Piron Consulting and a specialist in the economic analysis that can determine which projects best suit Public Private Partnership contracts.
Registering ownership of a property is challenging for any owner, Russian or foreign. But when the owner is a foreign state, the situation becomes both complicated and unclear. Diplomatic missions need advice before they go shopping for real estate.
Moscow would be wrong to simply copy the famous Rungis food market outside Paris. That's according to Rungis Consultant Coordinator, Mayeul Nicolas. He told Mark Gay that Russian authorities should adapt their proposed wholesale market to local conditions — and not forget to improve transport links to Russia's agricultural regions.