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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Russia Tops Europe's Retail Ranking

For MTBV Development's 82,000-square-meter shopping center in Krasnodar is due to open its doors in late 2008.
Russia will create more new shopping center space during the second half of 2007 and all of 2008 than any other country in Europe, a report from real estate consultants Cushman & Wakefield released Friday said.

The country topped the European-wide survey with a volume more than three times higher than that of the second-placed country, Poland.

More than 4.6 million square meters of new shopping space is set to hit the market in the 18 months running up to the end of 2008, the report said.

The report in particular points to a booming market in the regions as a catalyst for the country's retail explosion.

"Development has really taken off across the Russian regions this year, with quality developers such as BV Development and The Regions rolling out shopping centers to up the stakes in the major regional cities," said Tim Gosling, head of research at Cushman & Wakefield Stiles & Riabokobylko.

Rapidly rising incomes are driving a consumer boom in regional cities to follow the one that kicked off in Moscow some years ago, Gosling said.

"However, developers need to do their homework. One or two of the biggest regional centers -- such as Kazan and Yekaterinburg -- have very little space left for new retail projects at the moment. Others are ripe," Gosling said.

Across Europe, 11.4 million square meters of new retail space will be added to the market. The figure represents a 38 percent rise on 2007 figures and will be the third successive year of record growth in the sector.

Following in Russia's slipstream, Poland came second with 1.49 million square meters of new shopping space, while Spain and Turkey followed in third and fourth place, respectively.