As a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, Dutch GDP is expected to contract by 6.4%, which will cause unemployment to rise to 4.8% by the end of this year. Business investments will fall due to gloomy turnover expectations and private consumption will also decrease with consumers wanting to save more money, rather than spend it. As similar effects will most likely affect our major trading partners as well, Dutch exports are expected to lag significantly this year and will only partially recover next year.
The office market accounted for approximately 23% of the total office investment volume in the first two quarters of 2020. This brings the investment volume to EUR 1.5 billion, a decrease of 19% compared to the first half of 2019. Office take-up in the first half of 2020 was 490,000 sqm. This is a decrease of 20% compared to the same period last year, but this is not fully attributable to COVID-19. The continuing scarcity of high-quality office space in the most important office locations in the Netherlands is also an important cause. This scarcity has already been visible in the best locations in the largest cities in the Netherlands.
In the first two quarters of 2020, approximately EUR 700 million has been invested in retail property, with the majority already realized before the COVID-19 outbreak. The Retail and Hospitality industry are currently not doing well as businesses are heavily affected by the contact-limiting measures that have been put in place to prevent further spread. Retail turnovers were severely impacted, but the various branches showed significant differences in turnover results.
In the first two quarters of 2020, approximately EUR 1,92 billion has thus far been invested in industrial and logistical property, an increase of 51% compared to the same period last year. Investors showed a remarkable appetite for logistical properties as e-commerce activity increased at the expense of regular food and non-food retail.
In the first six months of 2020, demand was still strong but yielded less take up: 42 transactions resulted in a take-up of 480,000 square meters in logistics space, which is approximately 60% below mid 2019.
The take-up of regular industrial space was remarkably stable at 1,09 million sqm, which is comparable to mid-2019. The industrial property market is showing remarkable resilience regarding both the impact of COVID-19 and the lack of supply across many industrial markets in the Netherlands.
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