Resicom – Holiday Investment – 04-21 – LB

Montenegro – NATO Membership Boosting Property

Montenegro recently marked its first-year anniversary of joining NATO and membership of the alliance seems to be boosting the interest of overseas property investors in the Balkan country.

At a reception to mark the country’s accomplishments since becoming a full member of NATO, the Prime Minister of Montenegro, Dusko Markovic, said: ‘That moment (of joining) marked the entry of our country into the community of the most developed countries of today and the beginning of a new era for Montenegro.’

He continued: ‘The new Euro-Atlantic epoch means a lasting guarantee of the sovereignty and inviolability of our borders, and thanks to that, Montenegro is a stable, secure and safe country today.’

Milos Radmilovic, Founder of property specialist IM Property Group agrees, saying: ‘It could be a coincidence but since Montenegro joined the alliance we have seen a significant increase in property buyers, especially those buying higher value properties and mid to large scale development sites. I think membership has certainly added to buyers’ confidence in the country.’

In addition to NATO membership, Montenegro has seen significant infrastructure investment in roads and utilities, funded by the government and various joint ventures.  The largest investment of this type, the motorway connecting the coast with the Serbian border, is believed to be valued in excess of €800 million for the first phase.

Government long term leases of state-owned land have further spurred a wave of foreign investment in large-scale tourism and hospitality centres, some of which are opening this year and next.

Since gaining independence 12 years ago, Montenegro’s 300 km long coastline and spectacular mountainous scenery has boosted the tourism sector, which now accounts for 20 per cent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), a rise of 9 per cent since 2017, according to the WTTC.

The rise in tourism has been helped by the launch of several new flights from London and Manchester, and across Europe from Brussels, Milan, Barcelona, Oslo and Stockholm, making Montenegro easily accessible to a wide market.

Growing tourism is also igniting the property market. Property prices remain stable but are expected to rise, fuelled by the low interest rates of 4 per cent and the ready availability of mortgages up to 50 per cent of property value.

Increased occupancies driven by improved flight availability has also resulted in higher rental yields for those overseas property investors looking to rent out their investments.

According to IM Property, most property buyers looking to invest in Montenegro are budgeting up to around €200,000 but there is a considerable proportion, about 10 per cent of buyers, that have a budget of over €1 million to target the luxury market.

Many overseas property investors will already know the mountains of Slovenia and coastlines of Croatia, but it seems that Montenegro could be the latest former-Yugoslavian country to look at.

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