Singapore has been ranked as the top transparent real estate market in Asia, according to Global Real Estate Transparency Index 2014, which was published recently by financial and professional services firm Jones Lang LaSalle ( JLL).
Ranked the 13th globally, Singapore took the first place ahead of China's Hong Kong in Asia, because the latter was dragged down by lower scores in the area of property taxation relating to cooling measures and also in accounting standards and corporate governance.
This is the second time Singapore has been ranked higher than Hong Kong, the last time was in 2010.
The world's dominant commercial real estate markets are in better shape than at any time since the global financial crisis of 2008-2009, the report said, adding that the world's most transparent markets are still dominated by the anglophone markets, with the United Kingdom and the United States as the top two.
Sub-Saharan Africa has shown the greatest improvement in transparency, benefiting from concrete efforts to improve governance and regulatory framework. Meanwhile, most countries in Asia Pacific recorded slower growth, with the overall real estate transparency in China's Tier I cities the strongest. This was due to limited improvement in the availability of market fundamentals data and slow progress with regard to policy reforms in the past two years.
The JLL Global Real Estate Transparency Index, first published in 1999, is based on a combination of quantitative market data and information gathered through a survey of the global business network in 102 markets worldwide.
JLL also published a separate Real Estate Environmental Sustainability Transparency Index, in recognition of the growing importance of environmental sustainability to the real estate industry. Among the 33 countries surveyed, Australia, France and UK ranked the top three.