21 Mar 2019 - Indonesia (Medan)
Jet lag is manageable as I board my flight at Kuala Lumpur and despite crossing the sea and landing in another country the flight is up and down in just over an hour. I am now in a 2nd country in a week, arriving in the city of Medan, Northern Sumatra, Indonesia looking at commercial development land market. Arriving in the morning means I have avoided all of the long-haul flight midday arrivals, and whilst Europeans may not consider Medan as a destination numerous flights from the Middle east, South East Asia and China suggest we are missing something. I am quickly through immigration and after a week in KL I am less affected by the heat which has climbed to33 degrees, I am in the taxi and arrive at my Hotel and it is not even 11 am.
13 Mar 2019 - Liberia (Monrovia)
I am in Monrovia in Liberia looking at the land market.
It is complicated because only Liberians can own real estate, and to be Liberian you have to be of African descent, but almost of the major developers are foreign.
Therefore, all ownership by foreigners, which includes embassies, is based on a lease from Government or a Liberian company or person, normally for 30 years+ with rent reviews, sometimes with an upfront premium, compensation for buildings, profit share etc.
All of this makes the land market very difficult to analyse, with concerns that the ownership laws might encourage foreigners to withdraw their investments from the country.
28 Feb 2019 - Mali (Bamako)
I am in Bamako in Mali. It is spring here and the weather is mild which has made it relatively comfortable walking around the city. However, the place is not pedestrian-friendly because of the amount of traffic and the speed at which it moves (motorbikes particularly), so you need to be very careful crossing roads.
Property prices in Bamako are relatively expensive, and are generally equally if not more costly than the more developed Francophone West African markets of Dakar (Senegal) and Abidjan (Cote d’Ivoire). In term of benchmarks, prime offices here lease for up to CFA 12,000-15,000 /sq m /month and a prime ex-pat apartment would be up CFA 1,500,000 /month, with sometimes up to CFA 2,000,000 quoted.