Singapore prime Orchard Road shopping belt has been ranked the 27th most expensive retail street in the world by property consultant Colliers International.
The city moved up one notch from the 28th spot last year in the Colliers annual global ranking of rents for prime retail space.
Colliers said prime retail space along Orchard Road is US$330.19 per square foot per year on average. This was up about 2 per cent over the last survey in 2009.
Colliers Director of Research and Advisory Tay Huey Ying said the gain is due to the weakening of the US dollar against the Singapore unit.
But in Singapore dollar terms, rents for prime retail space on Orchard Road fell 5.5 per cent on-year in the first quarter.
Elsewhere, Colliers said street front rents in almost every region of the world fell during the past 12 months for a second consecutive year.
Colliers said despite an improved global economic landscape, retailers were still expressing caution in terms of expanding and committing to new stores.
But it also noted that there is mounting evidence that the worst of the downturn is over and high-end retailers would be back pressing for more high profile stores.
In particular, it said two sub-categories – financial centres and tourism-dependent cities – were doing better relative to the previous year.
It said, with many of the world’s rich feeling more secure and comfortable with luxury purchases, demand for high-end retail premises is expected to increase over the coming year.
In addition, with the improving global economy and credit markets, retailers with a strong balance sheet are quickly gaining the confidence to expand into markets previously viewed as too expensive or difficult to penetrate.
Colliers said the emergence of a sizeable middle class in Asia Pacific, the Middle East and central and eastern Europe will likely continue, and these “aspirational” consumers will be a key source of growth for many luxury retailers.
The Colliers survey is published annually and tracks annual retail rents of the world’s prime retail corridors across 127 cities in North America, Europe, Middle East and Africa, Asia Pacific and Latin America.
Source: Channel News Asia, 8 Jun 2010