Business and shopping in Belarus have made a quantum leap from what they used to be two decades ago. The population has access to a much wider variety of shopping and entertainment opportunities, and business companies receive a full range of considerably more sophisticated services from their landlords.
There appear to be six main factors accounting for the impressive progress the commercial real estate sector in Belarus currently exhibits.
1. International Trade Relations
Traditionally, Belarus has been a workshop for the CIS market. The country’s economy has mainly focused on export to Russia and the CIS. The situation has changed drastically over the last few years.
Belarus has expanded its foreign markets in all directions and actively trades with the UK, Ireland and Sweden. The EEU now consumes no more than 60% of the Belarusian export production. The rest goes to the EU, Scandinavian and Western Asian countries.
2. Foreign Affairs
The country has recently undergone a noticeable reorientation in its foreign relations, particularly in its financial sector, attracting attention from a wider circle of foreign investors and large international companies seeking to participate in Belarus’ economy.
No longer limited to Russia in its money flow from abroad, Belarus has become a target for investments from countries outside the EEU. The roles of the EU, the UK and China in the Belarusian investment sector have increased considerably in the last few years. In addition, about 75% of the money from abroad come as foreign direct investments.
3. Transition from Production to Enterprise
Consequently, there has been a considerable reorientation towards an actively expanding entrepreneurial activity, both foreign and local. The production of high-tech commodities for foreign markets continues to be one of the main contributors to the country’s federal budget. Yet, the increased attention from large international companies and the country’s greater involvement in financial activities have caused a significant shift from the industrial to the business sector.
The focus on high-tech products has remained intact, however. But Belarus is currently undergoing a rapid transition to the high-tech enterprise, as exemplified by such outstanding national projects as the Hi-Tech Park in Minsk. The particularly profitable commodities include optics, electronics and especially information technology products.
4. Domestic Business Sector
These trends and shifts have led to a higher demand for commercial property. The country has begun to need more offices to accommodate the ever-increasing number of local and international companies. The need was particularly acute in Minsk, where both national and foreign business activities seem to concentrate.
5. Internal Market
Besides the local business sector’s development, the population’s needs for more active and sophisticated shopping and entertainment have increased the demand for malls and entertainment venues. People’s expectations have grown to include a wider variety of cinemas, eating places and shops of all kinds. Thus, the local commercial real estate market became ready for considerable advances in its development.
6. BNK’s Estate
No progress in any field is possible without the direct involvement of highly efficient and productive individuals. BNK’s Estate, which has constructed some of the oldest business and shopping centres in Minsk, would not be providing such excellent services for their customers without Romeo Abdo’s executive management. The Galileo shopping mall and the Silver Tower business centre serve as two examples to confirm that.
The shopping mall’s advantageous location alone can guarantee a stable base of visitors and tenants. Yet, its management constantly upgrades the mall’s services and renovates its interior to meet its customers’ expectations and demands. Not content with an impressive variety of shopping and entertainment provided for Galileo’s visitors, BNK Estate intends to open the first fusion food corner and the most avant-garde movie theatre in Belarus.
Being one of the first business centres in Belarus, Silver Tower is famous for its outstanding caretaking and all-inclusive service for the large international and local companies that occupy its 17 floors of offices. Constructed in 2009, it has remained a leader in Belarus’s commercial real estate market ever since.
Belarus’ commercial property market seems to have all the conditions for its active development. And there is little doubt that under BNK Estate’s professional and responsive management, the shopping and business services will keep up with the customers’ evolving expectations and demands.