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MARCH 2012 |www.opp.org.uk


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EDITORIAL Editorial Director Geoff Hadwick ✆ +44 (0)208 734 3970 geoff .hadwick@richmondgreengroup.com


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IN THIS MONTH’S OPP ...


China’s open door The Last Word (p64-65) Adam Wu, CEO of The China Business Network, helps the international property industry work closely with investors from China. There is a huge amount of money out there looking for the best place to get a good return, he says. But how can the industry tap into this vast and potentially lucrative market?


Letter from Beijing OPP China (p24) OPP’s Beijing editor Hilary Li asks where China’s wealth really lies, and explains why you should start broadening your horizons and look beyond Shanghai and Beijing.


Selling to Sweden Agent Profi le (p40) Andreas Versen’s company, Station Invest is experiencing a surge of interest from Swedes looking to buy property overseas. Why is this happening and where are they going?


Rustbelt Returns News Extra (p22) “Rustbelt” cities in the US are in the unusual position of having missed out on the boom, but also missing out on the bust. What are the opporunities in this market?


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Please note that the cost of a yearly subscription to OPP is £71.50 (UK), £110.50 (Europe) and £123.50 (rest of the world).


New opportunities The OPP Deal Zone (p63) This month in the OPP Deal Zone we highlight opportunities including a Thai resort, a Brazilian residential project, Indian hotels and Central American education project.


Group editor Geoff Hadwick


Editor’s letter • Geoff Hadwick ✆ +44 (0)208 734 3970 geoff .hadwick@richmondgreengroup.com | 7


Support Portugal: it’s fi ghting back A


few months ago I had the honour of being invited to lunch by the Portuguese Ambassador in


London. It is not something I do regularly of course and, as is always the case, I soon found out there is no such thing as a free lunch. The ambassador was hosting a discussion group for the new Secretary of State for Tourism, Cecilia Meireles, who had come to London to try and fi nd out what her new government could do to boost the country’s residential tourism industry, one of its biggest earners. There were about eight or nine industry experts in the room, all lined up to talk about how Portugal is perceived around the world. Meireles was impressive. She did not come with any preconceptions and she made it crystal clear that she was there to listen. She even took notes. Everyone was realistic, but positive, and Andre Jordan, chairman of the Andre Jordan Group, summed up the mood of the meeting by saying that it was the fi rst time he had ever been asked to sit down with a senior member of the Portuguese government to try and sort out some useful ways forward for the industry. “And I have


been around for decades,” he joked. The point was well made. Portugal has a huge amount to offer and, as OPP reports this month in our special feature on pages 44 to 55, it is determined to fi ght back.


Our special survey revealed a market that is tentatively moving towards confi dence again. And Vale do Lobo boss Diogo Gaspar Ferreira, in an exclusive OPP interview, also gives his reasons for thinking that the worst is over for Portugal. Like its coastline, Portugal is putting together a fi ghtback that will be properly planned and sensibly managed. The country deserves your support. It could be a useful blueprint for many other troubled property markets around the world. Elsewhere in OPP month, take a look at


our Buffalo, New York, report on page 22 for a sanguine view on the U.S. distressed market. And fi nd out what is happening in the Canadian city of Toronto on page 36. Is it as popular with Chinese buyers as Vancouver? And speaking of Chinese property investors, go to page 64 for the Last Word with Adam Wu, head of The China Business Network. He knows better than anyone what China’s wealthy are looking for ... and why.


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