Pakistan is a lucrative market for international real estate developers
Pakistan has paid a heavy price in the war against terrorism in the form of loss to precious civilian lives, government infrastructure, and game changing international investment opportunities. At one point, it was seen that international investors were fleeing the country for stable regions to start businesses. The Pakistani regime, having realized the problems that terrorism brought upon the country, united on a single platform to initiate massive security operations in the purported terrorist stronghold of Waziristan in the northwest tribal region and the southern financial capital of the country, Karachi. The action has proved instrumental in turning around the fortunes of the country which is once again becoming a safe haven for international investment.
The government’s true resolve in thwarting terrorism can be judged from the fact that the regime has passed the National Action Plan (NAP) and allowed the holding of military courts to expedite cases against criminals. The result of these efforts show for themselves. According to a Worldfolio report, Pakistan has witnessed a 70% decline in major terrorist attacks in 2015 and is continuing the trend well into 2016. With the terrorism threat on the wane, the revenue-generating sectors of the country have bounced back and are moving towards betterment. The real estate industry of the country has done fairly well and has stood out to be one of the most profitable sectors contributing towards the recovery of the national economy.
Presently, Pakistan’s economy is also forecast to grow by 4.5%. This news has once again stirred the interest of international investors in the country’s potential for immense economic growth. According to data available at online property portal, Zameen.com, the Pakistani property market has seen 118 percent growth in the last five years. These stats are especially important for international real estate developers since they can now extract the maximum profits by investing in Pakistan’s growing real estate industry.
Reasons why Pakistan’s realty sector is a lucrative option for international developers
The most important reason why Pakistan’s real estate industry will gain more value is the fact that the country is receiving heavy investment from powerful international countries. Initiation of work on the $46 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor is one reason why the real estate sector of Pakistan will see major development in the future.
The Wall Street Journal has called the improving security and economic conditions of the country as ‘Pakistan’s pleasant surprise.’ Meanwhile, the economist wrote that ‘Pakistan is enjoying a rare period of optimism about its economy.’ This means that the situation inside the country is ripe for international investment due to social and political stability. Being one of the strongest industries in the country, the real estate sector can see an inflow of huge foreign investment by developers wanting to create commercial or residential zones in the country.
Positive indicators about growth in Pakistan’s realty sector
According to property web portal Zameen.com, average land prices in Lahore rose 13.64% in the past year, while prices of 5 marla and 10 marla plots rose by 16.73% and 25.26%, respectively. Karachi had similar results with an average rise of 23.4% in land prices. These numbers indicate a thriving real estate industry in the country that can prove fruitful for international developers if they decide to invest here.
Another positive indication for the country’s real estate sector is a Bloomberg report published last year. The report said that Pakistan has showed 11.3 percent growth by June 2014 (double the 5.7 percent growth target). This report is further supported by Pakistan Bureau of Statistics report that said that the country is spending $5.2 billion on construction every year. The amount can be further enhanced if international real estate developers step into the game and take up projects in all corners of the country.
The renewed investment opportunities being created in Pakistan is a great sign for the country that has remained stricken by terror for a long time. Here’s to hoping that the current political and social stability in the country attracts international developers to invest in the real estate industry of the country.
The writer is a journalist and a real estate analyst at Zameen.com. He has a keen eye for the UAE property market and occasionally writes travelogues of his adventures about less travelled places. He is a writer by day and an avid reader by night.