Commercial property sales in £5bn slump

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ANNUAL commercial property sales in Scotland have fallen by more that £5 billion since the height of the market in 2007, new analysis shows.

The 80 per cent drop has compelled the Scottish Property 
Federation (SPF) to call on the Scottish Government to help spur economic growth in the sector ahead of a conference today in Edinburgh.

The trade body has demanded that proposed fee increases in the Scottish planning system “go hand-in-hand” with service improvements, as well as calling on the government to take a “pragmatic” approach to energy efficient regulation. It also said that reducing empty property rate relief acted as a “drag” on property investors and developers.

Jestyn Davies, chairman of the SPF and managing director of Murray Estates, said: “The wider picture of the low or no growth economy continues to affect the property industry harshly.

“There is great potential within our industry to contribute to national wealth and indeed to create jobs, improve placemaking and enhance the energy efficiency of commercial buildings: but we need the best possible regulatory and tax environment that allows the sector to attract investment and flourish.”