RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY | Staff Reporter, Hong Kong

Hong Kong ranks 15 in real estate transparency index

The city could elevate to ‘highly transparent’ if its sustainability transparency improves.

Hong Kong ranked 15th among the indexed Asian markets globally on the biennial Global Real Estate Transparency Index, according to JLL. The index shows the most significant gains in improving real estate transparency of emerging markets, led by a greater emphasis on corporate social responsibility and the wider adoption of new technologies.

JLL’s head of research in Greater China, Nelson Wong, said that the city could elevate into the ‘highly transparent’ tier if it could improve its sustainability transparency, which could be learnt from those in the ‘highly transparent’ market.

“Hong Kong’s real estate market has strong regulatory frameworks, transaction processes and governance structures. Furthermore, we see the adoption of proptech platforms, digital tools and ‘big data’ techniques are increasing in this market, which has improved transparency as a result,” he added.

According to JLL, pressure exists from investors, businesses and consumers to further improve real estate transparency and compete with other asset classes, as well as meet heightened expectations of the industry’s role in providing a sustainable and resilient built environment in the age of COVID-19. Furthermore, innovative new property technology is changing how real estate data is gathered and analysed and is influencing industry transparency at a regulatory level.

JLL’s chief research officer in Asia Pacific, Roddy Allan, adds that transparency becomes fundamentally more important as enforcement of robust regulatory frameworks whilst investors look to allocate more capital into Asia Pacific real estate.

JLL notes that in both Asia Pacific and outside of the region, sustainability commitments have become the biggest single driver of real estate transparency and an increased focus on corporate social responsibility and the need to create sustainable buildings bring environment, social and governance (ESG) considerations into the mainstream.

Another key driver of transparency is said to be the volume of real estate market data now available due to the growing adoption of proptech platforms, digital tools and “big data” techniques with the pandemic leading to an acceleration in new types of non-standard and high-frequency data being collected and disseminated in near-real-time.

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