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Coffee Break Catch Up with… Meera Aswani

Meera Aswani
Senior Associate

In the next instalment of our Coffee Break Catch Up series, we speak to Meera Aswani, a Senior Associate in our Property Team.  Meera joined Hassans in 2016 after working previously at magic circle firm, Linklaters, in the UK since 2011.

Meera’s current practice focuses on assisting buyers and sellers, landlords, management companies and tenants, investors, developers and financial institutions in respect of residential and commercial property transactions in Gibraltar.

What is the current state of the private residential real estate market in Gibraltar?

The pace of construction of new private residential property developments in Gibraltar has been truly remarkable. In the last five years, we have seen:

  • Five buildings in the new Midtown development,
  • Quay 29 and Quay 31 in the Kings Wharf development,
  • West One in the Eurotowers development,
  • Clemence Suites and The Hub in Devils Tower Road,
  • The Residence in the Town Centre and Sylvian Suites in the Upper Town, and
  • Ocean Spa Plaza and Imperial Ocean Plaza in the Ocean Village development

… and they just keep coming!

The following residential developments will be completed soon: Arengo’s Gardens in the Upper Town, Carrara building in the new Eurocity development as well as E1 and Forbes in Devil’s Tower Road.

It really is an exciting time to be working in the property sector in Gibraltar. I am looking forward to the upcoming proposed developments which will be on a larger scale and which will incorporate different uses, namely, the Eastside reclamation and the Victoria Keys reclamation.

What are the five main benefits Gibraltar has to offer to individuals seeking to invest in property in the jurisdiction?

  • Investors can expect to receive rental yields in the region of 5-6%
  • There is no capital gains tax or inheritance tax payable in Gibraltar
  • Gibraltar has a stable and established legal system
  • There is mortgage financing available for investors and developers alike
  • There are no exchange control restrictions… so the sky’s the limit!

Are there any legal or other developments relating to real estate which you would like to see implemented in Gibraltar?

Recent laudable developments implemented in Gibraltar which serve the interests of transparency and democracy include: (i) public Development and Planning Commission meetings and (ii) legislation requiring Government projects to obtain approval from the Development and Planning Commission also.

I would like to see property legislation modernised in Gibraltar generally, including, registered title to property – with a state guarantee of title being conclusive evidence of legal title – as well as the digitalisation and the use of modern technology in property registration, such as, acceptance of virtual signatures on title deeds and online submission for registration of title deeds.

I would also like to see more of a focus on and encouragement for the refurbishment of the Upper Town, albeit in a sensitive manner, honouring environmental and heritage considerations. I would like to see this area include retail, boutiques, restaurants and cafes and other uses. This would attract both locals and visitors to this unique part of Gibraltar with its steep, narrow, colourful streets which benefit from splendid views across the Bay, particularly, at sunset!

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