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  Economics
Kuwait real estate sales climb 19pct in March - NBK report
27/04/2013 | LOC18:28
15:28 GMT
| Kuwait News
تصغير الخطالشكل الأساسيتكبير الخط
KUWAIT, April 27 (KUNA) -- Real estate sales in Kuwait worth a total KD 293 million leapt 19pct in March, 2013 since the same period last year, said a National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) report here on Saturday.
The increase comes after a drop witnessed at the beginning of the year, NBK's weekly economic brief on Kuwait said, expecting the market to remain stable until a slowdown marked by the advent of the summer period, particularly as the market's three main sectors are witnessing healthy demand.
Total sales in the housing sector, including 490 transactions, reached KD 149 million in March with an average of 1.0pct on a year-on-year basis as the average of each transaction grew by 7.0pct in comparison with 2012.
The latest developments in the financing sector could aid an increase in the purchase of residential real estate in the mid to near future, mentioned the report, noting that the rise of demand could be met with limited supply.
These developments have also led to a rise in loans provided by the Kuwait state public lender, the Credit and Savings Bank and parliamentary approval for the formation of a families' fund, in addition to the possible reduction of interest on housing loans from local banks.
Meanwhile, the investment sector in March witnessed sales worth a total KD 122 million with a year-on-year increase of 31pct. These sales mostly focused on high-rise buildings, residential apartments or land plots, with the intention of leasing the final product.
This sector is being viewed as a substitute for investment at the Kuwait Stock Exchange, added the report. In recent years, focus on real estate investment has increased in light of decreasing stock market returns.
The report went on to predict that the investment sector will achieve a positive performance in 2013 on the backdrop of heavy demand and abundant supply, however, it expected a drop in April in comparison with the same month the prior year, which witnessed exceptionally high sales.
On the commercial sector, the smallest of the three, the report noted that the sector witnessed sales worth a total KD 22 million through 12 transactions after good performances in the last two quarters.
Furthermore, the report said that loans provided by the Credit and Savings Bank in March were worth KD 34 million, distributed amongst 545 residential loans, with the bulk of these going to new construction projects - the average of which was KD 69,000 per loan. (end) asj.sd KUNA 271828 Apr 13NNNN
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