This is the weekly news wrap, featuring the latest real estate stories from Hong Kong. Whether your interest lies in industrial, retail, office real estate or asset investments, we have got the news that matters, covered. 

Tycoons on 2019 Forbes Hong Kong Rich List Face Multiple Headwinds
Almost half of the tycoons on the 2019 Forbes Hong Kong Rich List saw their wealth fall amid a tough past year fighting headwinds on different fronts. Twenty-three tycoons suffered a decline in wealth, affected by factors such as the softening local property market and China’s slowdown. Li Ka-shing retains the No. 1 spot on the list, despite a US$4 billion fall in his wealth to $32 billion. Property tycoon Lee Shau Kee remains at No. 2 with a net worth of $30 billion, down $2.9 billion from the year before and LKK Group Chairman Lee Man Tat climbs eight spots to No. 3 on the list.

High Data Centre Rents Have Allowed Three Firms to Dominate US$883 Million Hong Kong Market
South China Morning Post
Land scarcity and some of the highest rents in Asia-Pacific have allowed three operators of data centres to dominate the market – estimated at US$883 million – in Hong Kong. According to a report by Structure Research, which focuses on data centre and internet infrastructure, NTT Communications, a subsidiary of Japan’s largest telecommunications company, Sunevision Holdings, the technology arm of Sun Hung Kai Properties and US-based global data centre operator Equinix command 55% of revenue in the sector.

Brace For Up to 20 Per Cent Decline in Hong Kong Home Prices, CK Asset Senior Director Says
South China Morning Post
Hong Kong home prices could be headed for a multi-year downtrend that knocks valuations by up to 20 per cent, prompting major developers to slash prices for new homes along with the sliding market, according to a senior executive at CK Asset Holdings, the second largest developer in Hong Kong by capitalisation. The executive director Justin Chiu Kwok-hung said that home prices could drop 10 per cent this year and by up to 8 to 10 per cent next year, amid simmering trade tensions between China and the US that show little sign of being resolved in the near future.

Chinese Investors Are Spending Billions on Thai Property Despite a Turbulent Political Scene
Thailand's popularity among Chinese property investors has soared despite a 2014 military coup and uncertainty about upcoming elections. According to recent data from online Chinese real estate portal, Thailand was the most popular country in the world when it comes to inquiries from potential real estate buyers in 2018 – climbing up from the sixth spot in 2016. Thailand was the fourth-most-popular country for Chinese property investment in 2018, with US$2.3 billion coming in from Chinese sources.

Greater Bay Area Development Plan Set to be Unveiled
EJ Insight
Chief Executive Carrie Lam said central authorities will unveil in the coming few days the blueprint for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area. The Outline Development Plan, unlike her policy address, will only provide broad directions and will not specify projects to be implemented, Lam told media before attending a regular Executive Council meeting on Tuesday. She said the National Development and Reform Commission will explain the plan during a symposium to be held in Hong Kong on Feb 21.

Trade War: Trump 'Could Extend' Deadline for Deal with China
US President Donald Trump has said he could extend the 1 March deadline to reach a trade deal with China if they are making good progress. Chinese and US officials will hold high-level talks this week aimed at halting their damaging trade war. US officials previously said 1 March was a hard deadline for achieving a deal to avert further tariffs.

CBRE in the News

Hong Kong's Property Market Feels the Trade War Squeeze
The Straits Times
Features Marcos Chan, Head of Research, CBRE Hong Kong, Southern China and Taiwan

Foreign Funds Zero In on Hong Kong’s Neighbourhood Malls as Next Big Investment Opportunity
South China Morning Post
Features Lawrence Wan, Senior Director, Advisory & Transaction Services – Retail, CBRE Hong Kong

Securities Regulator Joins the Crowd Fleeing Central
Features CBRE