500K+ Sq. M of Logistics Spaces Under Construction in Romania, 60% Pre-Leased


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Industrial and logistics projects accounting for more than half a million sq. m are currently under construction and due to be delivered by the end of 2024, 60% of which being already pre-leased. The limited pipeline of speculative projects could put pressure on rental levels in the coming period due to the fact that, even though Romania recorded one of the most spectacular increases of demand for industrial and logistics spaces in the Central and Eastern Europe after the pandemic, rents remained the lowest in the region, according to data from the Cushman & Wakefield Echinox real estate consultancy company.

Therefore, around 555,000 sq. m of industrial and logistics parks are currently under construction and are planned to be completed in the Q4 2023 – Q4 2024 period, with 315,000 sq. m being already pre-leased. Bucharest (154,000 sq. m), Brasov (108,000 sq. m), Bacau (50,000 sq. m), Slatina (50,000 sq. m) and Timisoara (34,000 sq. m) are the main locations where developers will expand their footprints in the next 15 months.

The development activity in the major industrial and logistics hubs

Submarket Stock
(sq. m)
YTD completions (sq. m) Under construction

(sq. m)

Bucharest 3,402,800 122,700 154,100
Timisoara 742,300 10,000 33,500
Ploiesti 395,600 9,000 23,600
Cluj – Napoca 420,100
Brasov 372,000 18,000 108,000
Pitesti 283,900
Sibiu 160,800 8,800
Other Cities 1,061,800 92,600 226,500
ROMANIA 6,839,300 252,300 554,500

Source: Cushman & Wakefield Echinox Research

Andrei Brinzea, Partner Industrial Agency Cushman & Wakefield Echinox: “In a context where the economic uncertainty continues to impact the tenants’ expansion plans, developers may adopt more cautious approaches when it comes to commencing new investments in industrial & logistics facilities, on the short term at least. This caution can also be noticed in other markets in the region, a region where the new supply has seen an y-o-y decrease by 16% in the first 9 months of 2023. However, we estimate that the developers’ appetite for new investments will bounce back on the medium term, given that we are already witnessing a downward inflationary trend and a stabilization of the financing costs, elements which could stimulate the tenants’ needs for new industrial premises.”

The YTD new supply was of 252,000 sq. m across the country. The total yearly development activity in 2023 will be lower compared with 2022 (821,000 sq. m), as the Q4 pipeline is estimated at around 183,000 sq. m.

In terms of demand, a gross take-up totaling 716,000 sq. m was recorded in the first 9 months of the year, reflecting a 22% y-o-y drop. The new demand continues to be the main driver of the leasing market, with a share of over 70% out of the gross take-up registered in Q3 2023 and also during the first 9 months of 2023.

Moreover, the local market has recorded the highest demand growth between 2020 and 2023 compared with the pre-pandemic levels among the CEE countries (Poland, Czech Republic, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, Bulgaria). Thus, the average quarterly demand for industrial and logistics spaces at national level has increased by 254% since 2020 (to 267,000 sq. m vs. 75,400 sq. m in the 2010-2019 period).

The prime headline rents in Bucharest and in the main industrial & logistics destinations in Romania slightly increased, ranging between €4.25 – €4.65/ sq. m/ month in Q3 2023, an upward trend which is expected to continue going forward albeit at a slower pace, given the limited pipeline of speculative projects.

The rental costs in Romania are the lowest in the region, even though rents have generally gone upwards since 2020, an omnipresent trend at both continental and global levels.

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