Source: Politika | Friday, 26.02.2010.| 12:49
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Petar Matić sold business building and two parcels in New Belgrade - termination of lease contract requested for two hectares at Autokomanda

(Petar Matić)

MPC Properties, the company owned by businessman Petar Matić, started selling its real estates in Belgrade. Matić has recently sold the business building in Zorana Đinđića Boulevard for 9m EUR, which he obtained by taking over company Hypo Consultants. Then he sold two building lots at about 2 ha in vicinity of New Belgrade's flea market. The biggest surprise is, however, announcement of termination of the lease contract for three hectares of land at Autokomanda, for which he struggled against Delta a year ago.

Newspaper Politike failed to find out in MPC yesterday (February 25, 2010) why one of the biggest real estate investors makes such business moves. The public suspects that the U.S. partner Merrill Lynch endangered Matić's company because of the global financial crisis. It is more likely, however, that the business and commercial space market is saturated. That is why the company decided to sell the land for construction of business buildings as soon as possible.

Matić submitted the request to the City Secretariat for Ownership-Legal Affairs for termination of the lease contract with the Directorate for Building Land for the parcel at Autokomanda, for which his company Plenum set aside 23m EUR in December 2008.

Matić now waits for the Secretariat to make the decision on termination of the contract, forward it first to the Mayor to sign it and then to the Directorate for Building Land.

– Upon the termination of the contract, we will calculate how much money from the fee for land regulation will be returned to the other side. As far as rental is concerned, which he paid regularly, it will not be returned to him. Monthly installment amounted to 1.6m RSD – says Nenad Bajić from the Directorate.

However, that does not mean that the land at Autokomanda will be allotted to Delta, which wanted to buy that parcel to have business towers and big shopping center built in that location since it already owns neighboring parcels.

Upon the termination of the contract, the land will be returned to the city. If it wants to rent or sell the land, it will have to announce a new tender. The question is if anyone will be interested in renting it in the near future. There is almost no need for new shopping centers and offices in Belgrade because the existing space of the kind is almost half-empty. That also affected the price, so that the price of square meter of luxury office space in New Belgrade dropped from last year's 23 EUR to 10 EUR.

Siniša Nikolić, an investment adviser, says that the reason for such situation in the market is the crisis, which also affected the policies of investment funds.

– Nobody wants to give money for business and commercial space any more. Everybody is investing exclusively in residential development and agriculture. I do not believe that there will be some significant changes in the following period – says Nikolić.

(Note: complete text is taken from newspaper Politika of February 26, 2010)

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