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Chinese investment surges in Canadian commercial real estate
Brief:Chinese investment in overseas commercial real estate markets has reached a record high, with more Chinese investors piling into Canada's property market, a report released by a Vancouver-based commercial real estate firm has shown.
In 2014, the global outflow of Chinese capital into overseas property markets reached a record amount of $18.3 billion, significantly up from $2.3 billion in 2010, real estate company Colliers International said in a report released this month.

There has been ample evidence of Chinese investors piling into Canadian residential real estate for some time, as Canada is starting to witness a significant wave of Asia investors underwriting commercial real estate deals across the country, according to the report.

It's no secret that Chinese investors are interested in Vancouver's hot housing market, but now Colliers' report suggests their target is shifting onto commercial assets like resorts and hotels, office buildings and empty land ripe for development.

Kirk Keuster, executive managing director of Colliers International, told that the Chinese buyers now want a business to go along with the house.

"What we've seen, noticeably over the last 24 months and increasingly more over the last 12 months, is that many of these investors are now seeking investment opportunities," Keuster said in an interview with Xinhua.

One of those sites is this 232-acre (94 hectare) plot just east of Vancouver. Brilliant Circle Group based in South China's Shenzhen city bought it in January and told local media they may develop it into a large urban village. The same Chinese company bought a development in downtown Vancouver in 2014.

This follows two other big buys by Chinese firms of a resort in Quebec province and a development site in Toronto -- the largest city in Canada. Keuster said large Chinese firms have their eye on Canada specifically, with the majority of investments focusing on Vancouver and Toronto.

"Canada is the target for a number of reasons. One is that it has stable economy, the other is the stable political environment, and thirdly it has a very regulated, balanced banking system," Keuster explained.

He said the Chinese money was stoking an already competitive commercial market with high land values and a shortage of industrial assets. And that's good news for sellers.

"Sellers are enjoying this demand and the buying segment is facing even more competition. It's becoming even more and more challenging for all of these investors to actually get invested, to find opportunities and acquire them," he added.

China Daily

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