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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Russia Rents Called 7th Most Costly

Following last year's financial crisis, Moscow has inched down from fifth to seventh place on a list of the world's most expensive shopping districts, according to an annual survey of global retail rents released by Healey & Baker.

New York's Madison Avenue led the survey for the second year in a row, followed by Hong Kong's Causeway Bay and the Champs Elys?es in Paris. Prime rents averaged $6,459 a year per square meter in New York, $4,994 in Hong Kong and $4,951 in Paris.

Moscow was measured by the level of rents at the popular downtown shopping center GUM, where a square meter goes for about $3,000 in comparison to $3,500 to $4,000 before the August crisis last year. Moscow ranked third in 1997 with rents of $4,500 per square meter.

"We're in a [post-crisis] market where prices are dropping," said Natalia Oreshina, retail property consultant at Stiles & Riabokobylko, the Moscow associate of Healey & Baker. "Landlords have to cut prices so tenants can pay their rents."

GUM was picked for the survey because of its historically prestigious reputation of being the main shopping center in the capital, but rents at the popular downtown Manezh mall are at about the same levels, Oreshina said.

Healey & Baker's survey covers 212 locations in 43 countries.