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26 | OPP CHINA WORDS | Hilary Li


BUSINESS


www.opp.org.uk |MAY 2012 Goods go on show


Anyone who still harbours doubts about China’s place as the breakaway market for overseas property investment should have been at April’s 2012 Beijing International Property Expo. It was a four-days of motivated Chinese buyers and agents, hungry for all the information they could get on how to turn their cash into cashfl ow and where to fi nd overseas security for their futures. OPP China editor Hilary Li reports.


he very high levels of traffi c at the Beijing International Property Expo last month revealed that the Chinese are truly beginning to broaden their horizons at last in terms of what to do with their property investment funds. Nowadays, it seems, they are all looking overseas, trying to fi nd safe and secure places to make money and store up their new-found wealth. For many, the focus has always been on investing in a new home in a well-etablished and well-run country like America, Canada, England or Australia. Why? Because they are easy to understand and the average Chinese buyer thinks that he knows what he will get. Everywhere else in the world, for years and years, has been greatly undermined by a lack of reliable information on what their overseas property sector might have to offer. To be sure, the aforementioned


T


countries will continue to enjoy favoured status for Chinese overseas property investors for many years to come, but there is cause to rejoice among the many of you working in other markets.


Rhoy Ramlackhan of the Property Annex, based in Mauritius, was smiling and perspiring simultaneously, as the tables on his show stand were fully occupied for the majority of the Beijing Expo’s duration. Surprisingly to some, but not to those who understand the Chinese, a value-priced slice of paradise on a faraway island ... and on one that makes permanent residence easy for investors to boot ... holds great attraction for just as many investors here as it does in the West. It was truly wonderful to watch


Rhoy and team sweep aside negative perceptions of Africa with information about Mauritius’ upper-


middle income status, healthy GDP growth, and world-class universities. The Jin Fei Economic Trade and Cooperation Zone promises China- friendly policies and business opportunity, as well. Peaceful, multi- cultural, and overall the cheapest tropical living to be had, Mauritius


“Cyprus is building, and several exhibitors enjoyed a warm reception at the Beijing expo.”


makes great sense to the Chinese investor.


Not that price-point is necessarily


the top concern to the Chinese looking for tropical splendor. Mariusz Meirzejewski, director of


sales and marketing for Bali’s Ayana Residence, had to do a lot of hopping to keep up with the fl ow of enquirers during the show, yet still found the


time to single-handedly collar a pickpocket. And while we’re on the subject of crime, it is also a crime that more Chinese don’t know about Bali: they have the money, and Mariusz most certainly has the property. Conde Naste has rated the Ayana


as Asia’s number one resort, and the attached residential living stays right in line with the award-winning hospitality theme. A two-minute walk from the beach,


the Ayana residence has enough amenities to impress Donald Trump, while still keeping an unpretentious, calm, teak-wood tropical ambience. Chinese millionaires, identifi able by their be-jewelled belt buckles and designer clutch purses, were clustered about the Ayana booth arguing loudly with each other, a sure sign of serious consideration in China.


Sky-blue seas and sandy beaches


are as appealing to the Chinese as they are to the westerner, have no doubt. Throw in EU residence status, however, and you have the makings for a far-Eastern stampede. Cyprus is doing a lot of building, and several Cyprus exhibitors enjoyed a warm reception at the Beijing Expo, none more so than Barry Winter of Pafi lia. Pafi lia has a diverse portfolio of property for sale in Cyprus including apartments, penthouses, beach front villas, luxury golf properties, and custom built villas in Paphos, Limassol, even Greece. Pafi lia’s range of price and


The Chinese have the money | if you have the properties and you are prepared to go out at there and persuade them to buy


property was key to its success at the show, as there were all sorts of Chinese visitors at the show looking to make an international move. This is lost on quite a few international property companies, who presume that only the very wealthiest Chinese


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