Angola’s property boom

As property markets around the world shrivel in one country the sector is thriving and expected to continue to enjoy considerable growth…

Angola, which rivals Nigeria as sub-Saharan Africa's biggest oil producer, is undergoing a massive reconstruction programme which is fueling a property boom.

Property values, particularly in the capital Luanda, have skyrocketed amid an oil-fuelled economic boom that followed the end of the country's 27-year civil war in 2002.

Basic one-bedroom flats in Luanda rent at £3000 a month, and it is not uncommon for expatriates to pay £10,000 a month for something more luxurious.

Demand for office space has tripled in the last three years, according to Colliers International.

A shortage of modern buildings coupled with growing demand for housing from foreign workers is making real estate one of the hottest and most profitable sectors of the African nation's economy after oil.

'I predict continued growth in real estate prices during the next three years,' said Jose Camargo, Head of the Angolan real estate unit of Brazilian construction company Odebrecht.

The Government is committed to improving infrastructure including rebuilding ports, railways and other key infrastructure as well the construction of hotels, office and apartment buildings.

Dozens of construction cranes dot Luanda's skyline. The Bay of Luanda is undergoing a £1 billion facelift that includes new hotels and apartment buildings and other businesses along its historic but neglected shoreline.

The construction craze is likely to dent but not solve the shortage of apartments and office space, and prices are expected to remain buoyant, according to Nelson Rego, the Head of Angolan real estate consultancy firm Proprime.

This will be underpinned by strong economic growth and heavy inflows of foreign investment. The economy grew by around 20 per cent last year and is expected to expand by a further 15 per cent this year.

Investors see the country as a stable emerging market with a Government that has embraced pro-business policies, and the ruling MPLA's landslide victory in the recent parliamentary election ensured that the direction would not change radically.