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Investors set to battle for prime Barcelona office space | 12 February 2014

A number of investors are said to be interested in a sizeable collection of prime Barcelona property which is set to be put up for sale in March.

According to bloomberg.com, the Catalonian regional government will make around 15 buildings in the centre of the city available as it looks to pull itself out of a financial rut. It is thought that the sales could generate more than £249 million for the local economy.

Investors’ interest in Spain grew significantly in 2013, with more than £4 billion being spent on commercial property throughout the year – marking an increase of more than 112 per cent from 2012.

One of the most significant deals involved the property arm of AXA SA, which acquired 13 properties from Catalonia regional government at a total cost of £143 million. The buildings were then immediately leased back to the authorities, with the real estate firm achieving a net yield of 9.5 per cent.

While Catalonia contributes less than 19 per cent of Spain’s gross domestic product (GDP), it accounted for almost 30 per cent of the country’s regional deficits in November.

In 2012, Spain’s overall deficit – 10.6 per cent of its GDP – was the highest of any country in the European Union. It has, however, been given the next two years to ensure it meets the accepted limit of three per cent.

Among the new additions to the property market will be the buildings which currently house the government’s agricultural and educational departments, ee24.com reports.

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