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Macro Outlook Report – CEE Real Estate – Labour Force Riddle | July 2018

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This report takes a look at the labour force across the CEE region and identifies the issue and provides solutions to resolve the problem:

The problem

The availability of workers to companies is right now perhaps the most significant factor when assessing business plans and prospects in the CEE-6 region. Very low unemployment, dynamic growth, emigration and the fast development of the service sector have combined to create acute labour shortages. If the labour force riddle is not solved, then we foresee limitations to GDP growth, perhaps a recession and a likely shadow over private investment in the region in the medium to long run. If fulfilled, this path has negative implications for the demand for commercial real estate in CEE into the next cycle.

The solutions

We outline in this report six possible solutions to the riddle:

  1. A return of the labour force from the west.
  2. Immigration from the east, from the former USSR and elsewhere
  3. A step up in the quality of labour supplied in the region, through better education and training to improve productivity
  4. Less positively for the workforces, downward shifts in the demand for labour are possible.
  5. In the long run an automation of jobs and lower working hours in the week may do the job.
  6. On a less optimistic note for real estate, if nothing of note is done then an economic slowdown or a recession is most likely to solve the issue the shorter term.


Macro Outlook Report – CEE Real Estate – Labour Force Riddle | July 2018

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Czech Republic

Kevin Turpin

Regional Director of Capital Markets | CEE


Kevin joined Colliers in October 2019 as the Regional Director for Research in CEE and has been working in the Commercial Real Estate industry in the field of property market research and consultancy for over 15 years. The research and consultancy team consists of 16 research analysts, covering numerous markets across the CEE region. Kevin’s role is responsible for the delivery of market research and insights to both Colliers clients and its business lines. Kevin and team research and advise on all market sectors with a key focus on Offices, Retail, Industrial & Logistics and Investment. Kevin's previous roles have been in the HR consultancy, Information Technology and Public sectors, where he has gained valuable international experience working with people, technology, business and finance.

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