Abu Dhabi, Qatar funds invest in Milan properties

Government-backed investment in Italy picks up as country emerges from three-year recession

(Photo for illustrative purposes only)

(Photo for illustrative purposes only)

Government investment funds in Abu Dhabi and Qatar, as well as in Azerbaijan, have invested a combined $380 million in three different properties in Milan.

Wall Street Journal reported that Abu Dhabi Investment Authority has agreed to buy a 1960s building in the north Italian city, which the newspaper said will be demolished and replaced by a new tower.

Late last month, Qatar Investment Authority completed a deal to acquire the historical building that housed BNL’s (a subsidiary of BNP Paribas) headquarters in Piazza San Fedele in Milan.

The State Oil Fund of the Republic of Azerbaijan is buying a building from the Italian chamber of commerce, bring the total investment – including costs of redeveloping the sites – to $380 million (€350 million).

The investment comes at a time when sovereign wealth funds are investing heavily in Italian property, as its economy emerges from a three-year recession. Data-firm Real Capital Analytics said investment in Italian real estate last year was around $9.7 billion, up from $7.2 billion in 2014. In Milan, 90 percent of investment into city came from foreign investors, according to Knight Frank.

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