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Aligning existing supply with demand to bolster the office market in 2017
Aligning existing supply with demand to bolster the office market in 2017

Aligning existing supply with demand to bolster the office market in 2017


  • Prime/Grade A+ office buildings to sustain rents
  • Grade A and B office rents to continue facing downward pressure

“In the wake of continued contraction in demand anticipated over the next few quarters, Grade A and B office rents in Abu Dhabi are expected to fall by at least 10%-15%, a magnitude similar to 2016 rental drops” – predicts Core Savills.

However, despite lower demand from blue chip/large corporates, the current lack of Prime/Grade A+ office stock, exacerbated by growing Grade B stock is expected to keep prime office rents relatively resilient to further drops” the report pointed out.

Core Savills CEO, David Godchaux says: “There is a broad mismatch between demand and supply, particularly in the Grade A and B markets. There is a relatively active demand for smaller offices with spatial requirements ranging between 600-2000 sq.ft, however, the availability of such smaller units remains limited, with many landlords resisting floor division further, despite continued vacancy”

“New local enquiry levels are concentrated on the footprint optimization/consolidation while international first phase expansions have been largely limited. Notably, expansion requirements are coming from Dubai-based firms who are looking to expand their presence in Abu Dhabi given the softening rents. These enquiries are concentrated within the healthcare, budget F&B, accounting, legal and other service based industries” detailed the report.

“A relative spike in activity levels may be triggered in vacant stock if landlords cater to the mismatched demand from smaller spatial requirements, by splitting offices and offering competitive rental rates to uplift occupancy levels.” added Mr Godchaux.

Looking ahead, Al Maraya Island is expected to attract steady interest from corporate office occupiers for its premium commercial office facilities, due to the evident lack of similar grade buildings in the market. “An underlying future demand for prime offices which is forming and currently not being met by the supply of premium grade stock, is expected to favour office absorption in Al Maraya Island. As this underlying demand is progressively absorbed, some occupiers shift from older Grade B to new Grade A offices, additional downward pressure will mechanically impact Grade B occupancies and rental levels”

Mr Godchaux says: “The ongoing development of freezones and ports are actively diversifying revenue Abu Dh Dhabi’s streams while master residential communities are coming at par to house these economic clusters. The fact that emirate is comfortable with hydrocarbon reserves to fuel its future growth adds to the positive future momentum. This coupled with the increased activity on mergers & acquisitions in the oil & gas and financial services sectors translates towards integrated efficiency.”

“As previously witnessed in the region, mergers in the long run largely contribute towards cost saving and capturing larger market shares, a case evidenced by the merger of Emirates Bank and National Bank of Dubai to Emirates NBD back in 2007. Similarly, optimization and growth is expected from the current mergers in oil and gas and banking sectors in Abu Dhabi” adds Mr. Godchaux.


For further information, please contact:

Katherine Revett, Marketing Director, Core Savills:

About Core Savills

As one of the largest UAE property services firms, Core Savills, combines unrivalled local market insight with the international strength provided by over 700 global offices. As a full-service real estate business, working with tenants, landlords, investors and developers of residential and commercial real estate in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, the company provides integrated expertise across all property sectors, including prime real estate, international residential, offices, retail, hotels, industrial and logistics.


Source: Press Release